Review: Uniball Air Rollerball Pen

I added another Uniball pen to my arsenal of sketching pens. This is the Uniball Air rollerball pen from Japan.

The pen has a slim profile and nice design. There are translucent slits on the body where you can see how much ink is left inside.

The whole pen is made of plastic and there's no rubber grip. But it holds nicely in hand.

The rollerball is smooth on the paper and it uses the Uniball Super Ink which is pigmented. It's actually liquid ink inside the barrel.

The ink dries fast and becomes waterproof. I've sprayed fixative over it and the ink does not break up. Good stuff. The ink is also very dark.

The plastic cap.

Handwriting test on the Strathmore writing pad.

The line is probably between 0.5-0.7 in terms of thickness. There is some variation in thickness that creates a subtle effect when it comes to drawing.

How the ink behaves will depend on the paper. For paper that absorbs ink, when you press the tip against the surface, the ink will continue to flow and create a blob. If you let the tip linger too long on the paper, then chances are it's probably going to leave a blob. If you're a quick sketcher or writer, then this is not going to be a problem.

Price and value

Each pen cost around USD $1.90 in a pack of threes. It's not expensive, but it's more expensive than the Uniball Vision or Eye which cost around $1.4 in a pack of 12. The Uniball Vision or Eye is a better deal for the money.

In terms of performance, perhaps the Uniball Air is slightly smoother? But you really have to have other Uniball pens side by side to compare.

Main highlight about this pen is the slight variation in line weight that you can get.

Overall, it's a good sketching pen. Great for quick sketching, pen and ink watercolour work. I like drawing with it. Actually, I kinda like the random blobs at the end when I'm using crappy paper.


Find more reviews at Dick Blick Art Materials (US) | Jackson's Art (UK)



Hi Teoh,

Hi Teoh,

Thank you so much for this review! I was looking for a rollerball pen to use for my plotter and I am so grateful for all your reviews because you helped me make a decision many a time and particularly now that I need this specific tool. I remember that you had made the video but I searched your blog for it. It really is ever so helpful - especially because you take the time to find the products in other countries. I have tried to buy through your links before but not sure if it still works when the item is on a waiting list first. In future I will go back to your blog for the info, I promise!

Thanks again and kisses for Tiffany. :-)

Lots of love

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