Pen Giveaway – Pilot Metropolitan

As a way to thank all of you for stopping by the site every now and then and to facilitate the great simplification I’m undergoing, I thought I’d put one of my very lightly used Pilot Metropolitans up for a giveaway. As you can see, this is the all black Metropolitan with a medium nib. There is a squeeze converter inside the pen as well. To participate in the giveaway, simply offer a comment to this post. To make it a bit more interesting, please include your current favorite writing implement in the comment. We’ll leave this giveaway open until 10:00 pm EDT on Tuesday 8/11. The winner will be determined by a random drawing.



Thanks again for reading and good luck!

For Sale – Lamy Safari and Lamy Vista



Lamy Safari in charcoal black w/ black medium nib and Lamy Vista w/ fine nib for sale!!  SOLD
The picture gives the impression that the feed of the Vista is not clean but it was just vigorously cleaned with water. The picture is picking up the bits of water still in the feed.
Both pens include a Lamy converter. Safaris and Vistas are NOT sold with converters so the fact that both pens come with a converter is a plus.
$45 $40 SOLD (via Paypal) for both pens w/ converters – Includes shipping within US via USPS.
International shipping considered so long as you agree to pay all shipping costs over $5.
Email if interested.
I would prefer to sell both pens to one person. I will entertain offers for each pen individually but the first person to meet the price for both pens will be given preference.

For Sale – Kaweco AL Sport Raw Aluminum



Kaweco AL Sport w/ medium nib in raw aluminum finish for sale!! SOLD
This pen was inked exactly once with the Kaweco cartridge it came with. In other words, it’s as close to brand new as it could be without actually being brand new.
Pen comes with three (3) blue/black Kaweco ink cartridges.
$60 (via Paypal) SOLD – Includes shipping within US via USPS.
International shipping considered so long as you agree to pay all shipping costs over $5.
Email if interested. Price is final so no bargaining please.

Pen for Sale – Kaweco AL Sport



Kaweco AL Sport for Sale!!  SOLD
Blue finish with fine nib PLUS an extra medium nib!!
Squeeze converter included
$55 (via Paypal) SOLD – Includes shipping within US via USPS.
International shipping considered so long as you agree to pay all shipping costs over $5.
Email if interested. Price is final so no bargaining please.

Pen for Sale – Karas Kustoms Ink



Karas Kustoms Ink for sale!! SOLD
Very lightly used
Grey finish with fine nib and aluminum section
Converter included
$55 (via Paypal) SOLD – Includes shipping within US via USPS.
International shipping considered so long as you agree to pay all shipping costs over $5.
Email if interested. Price is final so no bargaining please.


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…

Palomino HB


Pencils, wood-cased and mechanical, have always been a prominent part of the collection but I would be remiss if I did not give a shout out to the gents from the Erasable podcast. While my discovery of the Palomino HB predates this podcast, there is no doubt that those guys played a role in my pencil collection and knowledge getting larger and deeper, respectively.

Anyway, as part of my quest to simplify the writing tools in my life, I spent a fair amount of time going through all the wood-cased pencils in my collection. In a previous post, I identified the Tombow Mono as my wood-cased pencil of choice. There is no doubt that it’s a great pencil but my goal to simplify has brought a change of perspective. I want a go-to pencil and the Palomino HB is that pencil. Why the Palomino and not the Tombow? Eraser, color and feel. The Palomino has an eraser and the Tombow does not. Admittedly, the eraser on the Palomino is entirely average but in the simplified world I now occupy, pencils with erasers make a lot more sense than those without. Next, the blue and orange colors of the Palomino are just great. Why would I want a black pencil with an unsightly barcode on it when I can have one in blue or orange. Lastly, the Palomino feels better in my hand than the Tombow. There is not anything uncomfortable about the Tombow Mono, but the rounded semi-hex cut along with the smooth yet tactile finish of the Palomino makes it one of the most comfortable writing implements, pen or pencil, I own.


In the world of HB pencils, the Palomino HB is a touch on the softer side but clearly not as soft as standard-issue B graphite. They should label the pencil as hB to accurately depict its graphite grade. Importantly, the point retention of the hB graphite is rather impressive. To be honest, I like the slightly harder (therefore slightly better at point retention) graphite of the Tombow HB a bit better but the difference is ever so slight. I guess my perfect pencil would be a combination of the Tombow Mono HB graphite with the Palomino HB body and eraser (let’s call it the Talominobow HB).

So there we have it. My wood-cased pencil of choice is the Palomino HB. I’ll audition other pencils in the future. But, if it cannot clearly beat out the Palomino HB, then I am going to pass and never look back. It would take me five lifetimes to work through all the wood-case pencils I currently own and my newfound simplification demands that I only own and use what I need to own and use. As Yoda might say, “If beat Palomino you cannot then forgotten you will be.”