I’ll keep it short. The Pentel TUFF, aka Twist-Erase III has been around since the late 1990s or so. A friend had a well used blue one back in 2010, and he swore he had it for like 6-7 years since he was in design school.
It’s a simple design that’s purposeful, and despite how I might feel about the longevity of rubber grips, the average user out there has been buying them often enough that Pentel has kept the production line going for over 20 years.
I only got my first when I finally succumbed to the 2021 limited run 0.5mm in ‘khaki’. That mossy shade of green did me in. Then I went hunting and found the export versions in 0.7 / lime and 0.5 / dark green.
Kept wishing there was a green 0.9 but it was not to be. Instead I loaded up leads to reflect the light to dark shades of green:
0.7 Lime = HB (Couldn’t find any lighter for 0.7)
0.5 Khaki = B
0.5 Dark Green = 4B
What’s also interesting are the punched holes in the clips. I noticed the Japanese version felt smoother over the top, whereas the two export versions had a noticeable ‘lip’ around the holes. It was like the export ones had been punched through from underneath.
For anyone interested, the 2021 Khaki sold out real fast in Japan and is now only found on secondary markets. It actually found its way to Singapore but by the time I reached my favorite store, only the grey and beige were left on the shelves.