I recently came across this Mitsubishi Uni pencil at the thrift store. I can find little about this specific pencil online, but I'm guessing that it's a close cousin to the Mitsubishi Hi-Uni - a well-known pencil from Japan - since it looks almost identical, except that it is printed with "Uni" instead of "Hi-Uni." Regardless, I am certainly impressed with this pencil and I think that it may become one of my new favourites (okay, I seem to be saying that about almost every other pencil I review these days, but honestly, I love them all).
This pencil also happens to be in the grade of F, which places it between HB and H in terms of hardness - a touch softer than HB, but still relatively dark. (The F stands for "fine", because this grade - being harder - could hold a sharp, fine point better than HB pencils.) Japanese pencils generally tend to be softer and darker than their European or North American counterparts, and I think this pencil might actually be a bit softer than some HB pencils I own. I am fairly sure that this is the first Japanese pencil I have used.
|Writing sample with a somewhat marginal sketch of a potted house plant. And if you're wondering what the dragonfly is doing on a house plant, it's actually a glass plant stake.|
I really love this pencil. The lead is smooth on the page and not scratchy, but not too smooth. It's not too dark and not too light. Not too hard and not too soft. Hexagonal rather than round or triangular, and with the corners rounded off just enough to be comfortable. It works well for both writing and sketching. It really is just about perfect.
I'm keeping this review short because I'm not sure if you can even buy this pencil anywhere, but if the Mitsubishi Uni is anything like the Hi-Uni, then I wouldn't hesitate to recommend the Hi-Uni based on my experience with this pencil. And I will definitely be adding the Hi-Uni to my list of pencils I need to try.