Sunday, March 21, 2010
Saturday, September 27, 2008
Economy (US $0 – 3)
Pentel Energize PL77
Pentel Technica-X PW45
Staedtler Graphite 777
Pentel Techniclic PD105T
Staedtler Triplus Micro 774
Low ($3 – 15)
Pilot Vanishing Point
Pentel Smash Q1005
Pentel Graphgear 1000
Pentel Flex Fit II PW35 (Now there’s a surprise)
1: August 2009 - Pentel Sharp P205 removed and replaced by Pentel Smash Q1005. The P205 remains highly recommended.
Medium ($15 – 50)
Pentel Sharp Kerry
Staedtler 925 25
Pentel Accugraph PG1505AD
High ($50 – 150)
Caran d’Ache Ecridor
Rotring Trio 357
Rotring Newton Trio
Parafernalia Revolution (Another surprise)
Caran d’Ache Varius Ivanhoe
Yard-O-Led Deco 34
Porsche Design P3130 Micado
Delta Dolcevita Medium
Parker Duofold Pinstripe
Link to List of Reviews (to find the reviews for the Top Five)
SOME RULES: Only pencils that have featured on my blog are eligible for the Top Five. Featured means a review or short article. This will hopefully encourage me to review pencils that I like in the hope they will make the Top Five. Vintage and discontinued pencils are eligible, as are multi-pens that include a pencil. Of course price ranges may change over time, particularly if a pencil is discontinued or vintage – the price range listed is my estimate at the time of entry to the Top Five. Also this is a list of the Top Five for a collection, so I am giving some thought to including variety, to having a representative range of pencil types and styles. Its not the Top Five draughting pencils, or Top Five writing pencils, or...it's the Top Five in general trying to keep some sort of overall balance. But this doesn't mean that I'm deliberately including unworthy pencils just to be representative, just that its something I keep in mind. My Top Five draughting pencil list would absolutely be different to my Top Five writing pencils to my Top Five unusual designs to my Top Five....etc.
Finally, since there can be only ONE, and that’s the Pentel SG65 / Excalibur, it is excluded from the list.
Monday, July 21, 2008
All are round cross-section erasers using a twist out mechanism unless otherwise noted.
Wide Erasers (over about 4mm or 3/16th inch diameter)
Faber-Castell Grip Plus
Faber-Castell Grip 2011
Pentel Side FX
Pentel Twist-Erase Frost
Pilot Clicker (push slider mechanism)
Sakura Sumo Grip
Stabilo Min Gum
Staedtler Noris 771
Staedtler Triplus Micro
Narrow Erasers (about 4mm or 3/16th inch diameter and under)
Faber-Castell Grip 1345/7
Faber-Castell Grip Matic
Faber-Castell TK-Fine Executive
Faber-Castell TK-Fine Vario L
Koh-I-Noor Mephisto Profi
Papermate / Sanford ProTouch II
Papermate / Sanford Technician II
Staedtler Integrity 9505
Back to Daves Mechanical Pencils
Thursday, April 12, 2007
I’ve dealt with a lot of online retailers, and most are satisfactory, average, OK, all those sort of words. But a few are different, so here goes.
The Good Ones
I’ve dealt with these folk more than once. I’d recommend them anytime. No comment about their pricing, product range, etc but if you are looking for customer service people that respond to questions, people that won’t rip you off, people that will fix up their mistake in the unlikely event they make one, then:-
- Swisher Pens in the USA, http://www.swisherpens.com/
- Pen Gallery in Malaysia, http://www.pengallery.com/
The Bad Ones
I’ve had the misfortune to deal with these folk more than once too. Maybe I’m a sucker for punishment, but I guess anyone can make a mistake, everyone deserves a second chance. Well these folk had theirs, maybe even a third chance.
“The foul bitter aftertaste of poor service lingers long after the sweetness of low price is forgotten.”
- I did have a retailer listed here. However, a couple of years have now passed since I last dealt with them, and they might have improved, so I don't think it's fair to continue to list them without a current evaluation of their performance.
Well actually I haven’t bought anything from these people, but they’re helpful communicative types so I’m pretty sure one day they’ll end up on ‘The Good Ones’ list.
- Cult Pens in the UK, http://www.cultpens.com/ In particular, and without critiquing it, I commend them for their “Guide to Mechanical Pencils”, particularly the Table of Features therein.
Disclaimer: Just for the record, these opinions are my own, from my own personal experience. No one paid me for anyone to appear on this page, but in the past I have had some inexpensive freebies or discounts from two of them, but only as part of an on-going relationship between a retailer and a (good?) customer.
Back to Daves Mechanical Pencils
Saturday, October 21, 2006
Updated 26 October 2009
Caran d'Ache Leads
Pentel Ain / Super Hi-Polymer + Hi-Polymer Leads
Pentel Ain Supplio Aromatherapy Leads
Pilot Neox Eno BegreeN Leads
Staedtler Mars Micro Carbon Leads
Uni "-ish" Coloured Leads
Uni Nano Dia Leads
“The Lead Cup” – Lead trials in a sports competition style
Round A – Parker, Pentel, Staedtler, Students Choice.
Round B – Faber-Castell, Rotring, Waterman, Zebra .
Round C – Caran d’Ache, Cross, Micro, Mont Blanc.
Round D – Insung Hands, Lamy, Papermate, Pilot.
Elimination Round – Caran d’Ache, Cross, Pilot, Zebra.
Semi-Finals – Caran d’Ache, Papermate, Pentel, Zebra.
Final – Caran d’Ache, Pentel.
The Lead Cup In Review
"The Great Blue Challenge" - Non-repro blue lead trials
General Lead Information
Sizes and Grades of Hardness
Does A Number 2 Pencil = HB?
HB Dark and Light, The Three HB's
Lead Diameter Plus and Minus?
Evolution of Thin Leads (0.5mm etc)
Refill Instructions for Mechanical Pencils
Non-Reproducible Leads (Non-Repro Blue)
Fading or Lightfastness of Coloured Leads
The “Leads” label on the sidebar back on the main site will also bring up some other stuff like postings of some pictures of leads, etc.
Back to Dave's Mechanical Pencils