MONO graph fine… is it the new ‘Smash’?

Dropped by THINK store after work yesterday and saw that the MONO graph fine had arrived. I picked up the sample and really liked the feel of the coated grip and also the forward weighted balance. Decided to get one silver in 0.3mm first.

I had read the press release about the ‘new’ coating that was inherited from the recent premium ZOOM models, and also about the ‘drop lock’ for the twist eraser. But the part I was most excited about came from user posts that showed the tip-cone-grip was a one-piece metal construction. This seemed to be taking a page out of Pentel’s Smash playbook.

Taking apart my silver Smash, the similarities are striking. Both have a plastic core and embedded metal clutch that feeds into a monoblock of metal.

Looking inside the grips, the Fine is obviously brass. I don’t think Pentel has switched the Smash away from brass but the insides look ‘silver’ instead of a golden hue. Holding the two in hand, Tombow’s piece feels heavier. (Sorry, I do not have a digital scale.)

Lastly, the drop lock mechanism on the Fine prevents the twist eraser from ‘clicking’ and dispensing lead during use. This is a real upgrade over the Zebra Delguard ER’s puny eraser stubs, and also a step up over the now obsolete MONO graph zero.

All in all, I think the Fine is growing on me. I will return to the store and pick up the black and 0.5 as well.

Because the upper shaft is plastic, Tombow can easily make their signature MONO color version with blue/white/black stripes over a clear body. Looking forward to this model having a long production life.


I’m feeling tempted to buy :slight_smile:
Probably wait for the signature stripe version though.


I want these in every size and color. Looks like one of the finest modern pencils, and I already LOVED the Mono Graph ZERO.


Yeah as pearsonified said this is an upgraded version of an already excellent pencil. I’m super excited for it.

How’s the coating like? Is it on the monoblock of metal? I worry how this pencil will stand heavy use… I’m not the biggest fan of this recent coating trend.


I know, right? The proof is in the pudding. I hope I won’t be shocked by some X post from Japan showing the coating peeling off just weeks after launch, etc… as happened with the Staedtler Hexagonal’s coating.

There’s just no accounting for usage habits…

I’m continually numbed by the number of dropped, scratched and destroyed pencils on Reddit. Especially folks who actually managed to SNAP their pencils in half through heavy use.

A green service by Tombow: when your MONO graph fine’s grip wears out, trade it in for a new one at a low fee of 300 yen. The worn grip is then recycled.


It’s a shame the Zero kinda got lost in the sidelines as the main MONO graph and lite series ramped up in the colorways. One thing about the Zero that I noticed: the knurling, while nice to the touch, lost its shine quite quickly. Perhaps another casualty of economic reality?

I still wish Tombow would develop a lead holder for their excellent Irojiten color lead pencils. I could get behind a MONO graph color series in a big way.

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I hope the coating lasts, because it is quite a timeless design.

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Just received my Mono Graph Fine specimens (black and silver in 0.5mm), and my first impression is that this is one of the nicest modern pencils—perhaps the nicest modern pencil available for under $15USD.

IMO, the Mono Graph Zero was a tremendous pencil, and I already think the Fine is even better.

Now I’m just hoping Tombow releases some exciting colorways, similar to how Pentel has done with Orenz variants.

(Also, @knockology, I’m not seeing a way to change my font. But Papyrus is a big L because it’s difficult to read.)


The Fine looks quite nice but I’m not entirely sold on that clip, though…

The clip on the Zero is ok… maybe a little boring… but on the Mono Graphs (both MP and BP) they are quite interesting if you discount acting as a pushbutton too.

Edit: IMHO, the clip on the Fine speaks about “metal”, “thin” and “ligature” — it’s not an organic element as the overall pencil looks like.

I recently got a bunch of those inexpensive (yet brilliant) Mono Graph Lite ballpoints. The clip is pretty straightforward but it is in tune with the “plastic”, “cozy”, “warm”, “grippy” looks of the entire thing. This is not to say that you can’t have a contrasting element, but the clip on the Fine does not speak of “contrast” or of an element that you put in a design to break the balance or a perfection — to me it speaks more of an unresolved solution.


That said, I am almost ordering one.


Very tempted to buy both colors in 0.5mm. Black and Silver are a favrote combination of pencil colors.


This guy had a few left at less than $16 w free shipping. I think only .3 in black though.

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As far as the MONO graph line goes, I like the fine the best. The normal Tombow quality is certainly built into this pencil, and the grip is extremely comfortable. I have not had an opportunity for any extended use, but all in all I’m very happy with it.

The only negative thing I could say about it is the mechanism that locks the knock when erasing is reminiscent of a shaker mechanism. It’s got quite a bit of a rattle. Since I can’t read Japanese, before I ran the box through a translator, I thought it was a shaker pencil that was broken.


I don’t really like the eraser features but I’m guessing it’ll sell better in the Japanese market thanks to those. It’s much more appealing to students that way.
I have my mono graph fine on the way, I’ll post here once I get it.


Based on the positive comments regarding the Tombow MONO graph fine I ordered one too, and today it has arrived. The first impression is very positive, and I will use it in the next days.

Just like @Pdunc67 I thought of a broken shaker because of the moving part :smirk: I’m not a big fan of anti-slip coatings but the coating on the MONO fine is very nice. I hope it lasts!

However, there’s one detail which annoys me:

The lettering is skewed. – Yes, I’m picky :slightly_smiling_face:

For the record: Smash grip 4.7 g, MONO fine grip 10,7 g.


Does anybody know when the MONO graph lite was introduced?

The MONO Graph Lite ballpoint was launched in February 2021. The pencil came out later in November 2022.


@drifand Thank you!

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I finally got mine. The finishing is spectacular but I really don’t like the locking mechanism. If at least they had managed to turn the inner weight into a shaker as well as the lock, that would have been more interesting, but it rattles way too much for a mechanism I’ll never use (I don’t use the erasers on my pencils, I’m not a monster)

It doesn’t seem like the weight can be removed easily. I thought it may be like in the dr grip shaker, where you take the body apart and the shaker weight can be removed without any issues. I wonder if any japanese account figured a way to do it…


It can be done:

Search for モノグラフファイン分解


Thank you! The second link I can’t open since it seems to be from a private account but I got the job done.

For anyone interested: you have to pull the clip part from the main body. It requires some force but it’s non destructive (there’s no glue). After doing that, the internal mechanism just falls apart (in other pens, it’s friction fit.

Now remove the big metal+plastic piece. The small white plastic piece is needed so that the clicker button stays in place. You can reassemble now.

It has almost no rattle now! Perfect. It loses a bit of heft, as expected, but the front piece is solid enough for the writing feel to be excellent regardless.

I saw this on one of the tweets. There’s no need to disassemble this far, but the back rings are actually rings and not painted on!! So nice tombow. So nice.