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Discussion in 'Pens, Pencils, Notebooks, and Notebook Covers' started by DCBman, Sep 20, 2016.
Yes, I have a Kum sharpener, and it truly does blow some of my $40-50 brass sharpeners away!~!
This is just awesome! I do not anyone in real life that knows any of this stuff. Ticonderoga Black is my favorite pencil of all time. Just the feel of the paint in your hand is like nirvana. I bought a careers worth. Ok, question? Does anyone know its original name?
I do not; I found about them sort of by accident. I had always loved 'Dixon" Ticonderoga #3 yellows as a kid. No one had them. Back then even they were pretty good quality pencils and they wrote a mile between sharpenings (always amazed my friends). One day I stumbled into some Ticonderoga Blacks, they were like writing with butter. Ever since I have sought them out around the globe!
I'm an old school draftsman...all manner of pencils, pens and inks are a love affair of my life. The stories I could tell you! I have boxes of sets of the old Faber Castell (green) drafting pencils in B, HB, 1H, 2H, 3H, 4H, 6H and 9H. These are the ones with the gold and red trim around the end and lacquer over the top on the end. They just screamed "If you're a REAL draftsman, you don't need an eraser!" Yeah, I had an eraser, but it was a separate device (retractable pen like) and one of the old 'eraser shields' so you only erased exactly what you meant to.
I also have scores of lead holders, and all manner of leads. As you likely know, the sharpeners for those were different. And then there was the sandpaper sheets for the perfect point.
I got tired of having to frequently sharpen wooden pencils and switched to mechanical pencils when I was in high school. I use pens with water-resistant ink for writing in journals.
My family thinks I am nuts because I prefer old school pencils to mechancal. By a lot.
I used to be a draftsman as well, in the transitional years. Learned CAD and manual drafting. I still have some of my old manual drafting gear. Ames lettering guides, Mars/Staedtler eraser shields, etc. I don't EDC them, but I do frequently have a pencil in my maxped mini.
My new favorite thread. DCBman you should change the thread name. Also, I don't care who you vote for or what team you like, you are OK with me. Raise glass.... cheers.... clink... chug... burp.... fist bump.
Ps. Love the draftsman. Teacher here.
Change it to what?
Some people have tool chests full of Snap On tools. I have tool chests full of pencils and drafting equipment, whole floor standing tool chests full! Yeah, I have tool chests with tools too, but they're in the garage.
Frankly, I am delighted to see there are other people out there who enjoy some of these things! It truly is a lost art, and it's a shame too because it's such a pleasing skill/hobby/love/addiction/whatever you want to call it. Even intrinsically.
On another forum (Sailng Anarchy), there was a similar thread. Robert Perry, the famous (in the sailing world anyway lol) had some interesting photos of his work, and equipment. As I was a mechanical draftsman, I found some of his old NA equipment really cool, as I didn't draw a lot of compound, complex curves. He had a fine collection of "ducks", which I had never used before. He preferred splines to french or ships curves, as it gave a more natural line.
Interesting stuff, at least to me.
I've been exploring wooden pencils for the last couple of years. There's a satisfaction to be had using up a wooden pencil that you just don't get with a drafting pencil or lead holder and I've had a great deal of fun experimenting with different type of points and sharpeners. If I just need to get work done, I prefer a drafting pencil or lead holder, but for playing, I like wooden pencils. I keep some cheap pencils around with regular points, but all my nice pencils are sharpened by hand with a blade. I put chisel points on them of varying thickness and have a blast playing with the effect line variation has on my writing without the mess or fuss of a fountain pen.
When I was finished experimenting with fountain pens, I turned to wooden pencils simply because I could buy examples of the best pencils in the world for $2 a piece (as opposed to a $30 entry level fountain pen), so I bought examples of all the top tier pencils to play with and, as I learned what I liked and didn't like, I picked up some more.
I've got more pencils now than I'll be able to use up anytime soon, but that's okay. If I ever manage to use them all up, I'll probably just buy a box of Hi-Uni or Lumograph and call it good. Of course that means I'll need to work through the boxes of Cedar Pointes, Blackwing 602s, and what-not first.
Yeah, those Mitsu-Bishi Uni's are awesome too. Some of my old Berol's and Faber Castel's will hang with them, but you can't get those anymore. I need to order some more of the uni's. They're getting pricy anymore though ($24 bucks a box). I don't do too much hand sharpening on my good pencils though. I do on some of the cheaper ones (takes too much wood off, even with a sharp knife). I sharpen frequently, and just take off micrometers of wood. I also get the very most out of a tip through rotation (as most do and know). I like to buy pencils by the gross, but you can't buy Uni's that way (at least nowhere I've found).
Wooden pencils are a conversation piece, at least in the engineering world. I give pencils away sometimes and as a result now have a loyal following of people who now actively seek out and use wooden pencils. Just the other day I had a young engineer come in with a wooden pencil and ask..."hey, is this a good one?". I showed him some of the finer points in how to tell (i.e. the way it sharpens, etc) and let him decide. (it was just 'okay').
BTW...this may crack you up, but I've never been much of a fan of the 602 for some reason. I love the Blackwing straight black ones though (in my top 2). Somehow the lead seems different in the 602...just too soft (almost charcoal). It's probably just my imagination though.
I love my Blackwings in general though!!! Most people have never written with a "real" pencil until they try one of these!!
The quality of even the cheapest pencils now is much better than when I was a kid. Around school start, I'll pick up boxes of different brands of pencils for around $0.05 per pencil and they are all usable with decently centered leads and leads that sharpen well enough and don't fall out of the pencil in small broken bits like what I had as a kid.
They're not a pleasure to use like the pencils I buy for myself, but they're usable.
Anyways, they don't stay in the house long. School supply lists require a crazy amount of pencils to go to school with each kid, so I end up buying 8-10 dozen cheap pencils every year. I think they go into a communal bucket or something.
I use a tap-knife with a razor blade in it. I usually shave off the wood without touching the lead first. Then when enough lead is exposed, I'll make the chisel point and then adjust the width to suit my fancy. I take off less lead and can typically write longer between sharpening than if I used a regular point.
Well, except for those plastic pencils (whatever the hell they are). They SUCK! (the ones that aren't made out of wood, but some sort of shaved plastic).
They are a total BLIGHT on the pencil world in my opinion!!
flatline Do you use pencil extenders? If so, what kind? (and how low can you go???)
edit...I've got a couple from Japan where I can practically start grinding the metal off the eraser holder in the sharpener before they're finished! (talk about getting your money's worth!!).
I do use some extenders. I've got the expensive ($25ish?) silver Staedtler extender, a cheap japanese spring clutch extender of some sort from jetpens, and the Faber-Castell "perfect pencil" 9000 extender.
They all work well and let me get all but the last inch or so of lead from a pencil. My favorite is the perfect pencil extender. It just feels good to use.
I'll probably be viewed as a heretic on this thread. I have dreadful memories of junior high shop class -- which at the start emphasized manual drafting. Never seemed to be able to satisfy that teacher. Just a painful experience. So I have no fond memories of manually sharpened pencils or lead holders.
OTH. I ALWAYS have with me a fountain pen, either a bp or rb, and a mechanical pencil. Always used pencil in all math courses and accounting courses. Half the time I can only think on paper with a mp in hand! My favorites these days are Retro 51 with 1.15 mm leads or Parker Duofold propelling mp using either 0.9 or 1.15 mm leads. Probably these models (both the Retro 51 and the Parker Duofold) also appeal to me because they have nice beefy silicon erasers that are effective, unlike most mp!
Moshe ben David