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Thursday, August 03, 2017

Review: Everlast Notebook

***I received no compensation of any kind and paid full price for this notebook and all other things mentioned.***

In one of the Facebook groups I belong to, someone shared that she had a notebook that was reusable from Rocketbook. I'd heard of them before, but their first notebook needed to be microwaved to erase the ink and reuse it and I totally didn't want to do that. (It's called the Rocketbook Wave.)

This notebook, though, that the woman was talking about didn't require microwaving. You wrote with a Frixion pen and then with a damp paper towel, could wipe the page clean. I use Frixion pens 90% of the time anyway--I love that the ink is erasable--and the idea of an erasable notebook? I mean how cool would that be?

After stalking online to buy this notebook, it finally became available. The Rocketbook Everlast Notebook.

I know I should have read the description, but I was surprised by how thin the notebook was. There weren't that many pages so if you were somewhere you needed to make a lot of notes and didn't have time to erase or upload, it might be an issue.

The paper itself has an interesting, slippery texture to it. I'm not sure how I feel about it yet, but it's the key to the reuse part. The pages are dot gridded and have a QR code at the bottom as well has a group of symbols. More about those in a minute. The cover is heavy duty plastic.

Thing number one is you must use a Frixion pen. Number two: It takes a little while for the ink to set. The back of the packaging the notebook came in suggested a few seconds, but that wasn't my experience. I ran my finger over the sentence I wrote probably ten to fifteen seconds later and you can see that it still smeared. I stopped as soon as I saw it.

Three: You need to setup the app on your phone or tablet to upload your pages. That was relatively painless except that I made a typo on my email address--the phone keyboard is small--and there is no way to correct a mistake. I had to uninstall the app, reinstall, and reregister.

I'm still not sure what the QR code is for, but the little icons are directional markers. For example, on the app, I setup the rocket to auto upload to Dropbox. I also updated my app settings to make the page a PDF rather than a JPG.  All I need to do is put an X through the rocket icon and the app sends it directly to my Dropbox. If I make the X through the diamond, it goes to email and I can setup the other icons for other cloud services as well as OneNote.

For the record, the auto upload to Dropbox as a PDF worked fabulously! So fabulously that I didn't think it had sent and so I manually sent it again. Oops! Trust the app, Luke. ;-)

So the big question: How well did it erase?

In my test, I found it wiped clean easily. The biggest issue I found was waiting for the page to dry. The paper towel is supposed to be soaked, wrung out, and then used to wipe. I guess how long you wait depends on how well you wring it out. I had to wait a while. But here's a shot of the page after I wiped off the writing.

The reason I was interested in this notebook to begin with is so that I could have my story notes electronically and not in notebooks all over the house. I think this will handle that well if I can remember to do the uploads regularly and if I can get used to the feel of the paper. I never thought I was real tactile when it came to how a paper feels beneath my fingers, but apparently I am.

Overall thoughts: The book does everything it promised and the app works well. The paper is slippery and doesn't feel very much like the paper I know and love, so I'm having an adjustment period. At least I hope I adjust. The notebook is expensive and the pages are few, but since it's reusable, it ultimately could be a money saver. There's a wait after writing and a wait after wiping, but that can be worked around.

Ultimately, I'm giving it a thumbs up, but I might revisit this topic later as I use it more.

***I received no compensation of any kind from anyone for anything I said in this post.***