A Bucket of Pencils


The humble mechanical pencil has always been a key component of my writing arsenal. I have had a few favorites over the years, but I never really zeroed in one or two (or five for that matter) as my go-to mechanical pencils. Due mostly to its availability, cheap price and fantastic eraser, Pentel’s standard Twist Erase (usually in 0.7 mm) frequently found its way into my hand. That little guy got me through more than a few organic chemistry tests in college. The Twist Erase is a fine pencil to be sure but that never stopped me from buying and trying other possibilities. How many other mechanical pencils have a tried over the years? Well, here is the list of mechanical pencils currently residing in the dedicated mechanical pencil bin at home. This list does not include the odd pencil lost in an office drawer somewhere or pencil components in multipens, but it is a reasonably complete list of the mechanical pencils I have tried over the years.

(in no particular order…)
Pentel Twist Erase 0.5, 0.7, 0.9
Pentel Twist Erase GT 0.7
Pentel Twist Erase XP 0.5, 0.7
Pentel Twist Erase Click 0.7, 0.9
Pentel P205 0.5, 0.7, 0.9
Foray 0.7
Kokuyo PS-P100 0.9
Platinum Pro-Use 0.7
Pentel e-Sharp 0.5, 0.7, 0.9
Caran d’Ache 844 0.7
Staedtler 925 0.7, 0.9
Vintage Eversharp 0.9
Parker 45 0.9
Pilot G2 0.7
Pentel PG1009 0.9
Pentel Energize X 0.5, 0.7
Pentel Energize Deluxe 0.5, 0.7
Pentel Graphgear 500 0.3, 0.5, 0.7
Pentel Graphgear 1000 0.5, 0.9
Pentel Graphlet 0.7
Alvin Draft/Matic 0.7, 0.9
Alvin Draft-Tec Retrac 0.5
Pentel Kerry 0.5, 0.7
OHTO Promecha 0.9
Zebra DelGuard 0.5
Autopoint 0.9
Autopoint Jumbo 0.9
rOtring 600 Newton Lava 0.7
rOtring 600 Newton Black 0.7
rOtring Tikky 0.7
rOtring Rapid Pro 0.7
rOtring 800 0.7
Parker Jotter 0.5
Parker Lifestyle 0.7
Pilot Color Eno 0.7 (multiple colors)
Lamy 2000 0.7
Lamy Scribble 0.7
Retro 51 Einstein 1.15
Cult Pens Double Knock 0.5, 0.7
Staedtler 925-35 0.5, 0.7, 0.9
Uni Kuru Toga 0.5, 0.7
(By my count, that’s well over 60 mechanical pencils I could put my hands on right now. )

As part of my objective to simplify/reduce/focus my writing tools, I would like to curtail this unwieldy collection down to a final few. Getting down to 2 or 3 options for each of the common graphite sizes (0.5, 0.7 and 0.9) would be a nice goal. I have made considerable headway towards on this in the past several weeks, but I am not yet down to a final list. Maybe I will compare similar pencils along the way so do not be surprised if a few mechanical pencil posts show up around these parts.

What will I do with the pencils that do not make the cut? The less expensive pencils will make their way into the “free for the taking” beaker of pens and pencils I keep in my classroom. Any pencil worth a few bucks will likely head to eBay. More to come…

3 thoughts on “A Bucket of Pencils

    1. I probably shouldn’t admit that I fell so hard for that pencil when I first discovered it that I bought two. 🙂

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