My new favorite toy - Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum
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post #1 of 8 Old 06-12-2020, 12:42 PM Thread Starter
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My new favorite toy

Ok, so it's just a pencil, but not just any old pencil, it's a pentel snazzy mechanical pencil that'll accept pencil leads from 0.3mm to 0.9mm, but it has a great feel to it and doesn't advance the lead too much as to snap off just writing your name. It also allows you to get up close to whatever you're measuring /marking without having to keep tabs on the location of your handy pocket pencil sharpener.. I also bought one of those so I can find it under something in the shop 3 years from now along with the two mechanical pencils I'm bound to lose as well.
So just to be prepared I also bought a box of 48 wooden pencils which I'll NEVER lose unless I bother to breath once in awhile.
So without further ado here's my overpriced mechanical pencil(s)..
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I figured it's time to change my signature so hold your breath. This is it.
Impressive, huh?
Marty or Marty Farty if you feel mean.
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post #2 of 8 Old 06-12-2020, 12:48 PM Thread Starter
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Just wondering..should I hire a personal mechanical pencil secretary to keep tabs of my new pencils? I wonder what she'd charge for those kinds of services..

I figured it's time to change my signature so hold your breath. This is it.
Impressive, huh?
Marty or Marty Farty if you feel mean.
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post #3 of 8 Old 06-12-2020, 04:44 PM
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I have at least twenty Pentel mechanical pencils, including two of the five hundred series like yours. One of mine takes .3mm lead and the other .5mm. The barrel colors dictate the size lead they take. My .3 is kind of an ugly brown and the .5 is black. I use these two with my Vemco drafting machine; they never leave the drafting table. I think the .7mm is a blue barrel and I don't remember the .9 barrel color (I don't have one- it's like crayon size to me!)

The other fifteen or so are the "Sharp" model drafting pencil and are spread all over the shop and house. I also have two "sliding sleeve" models that I adore, but I don't think Pentel makes them anymore.

The biggest problem you may have with your new pencil is wanting more of them, in different sizes. Once you see how accurate it can be, you'll need to get another. I completely went over the edge, but I love those pencils, and as an old guy I still draw, sketch and draft just about everything on paper. Electronics are OK for some things, but I need to be able to put my thoughts on paper. I'm faster with a pencil than with a gizmo. I have pencils and clipboards of graph paper scattered all over the house and shop.
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Another $000,000,000.02 worth of advice,
Mark
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post #4 of 8 Old 06-12-2020, 05:41 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shop_Rat View Post
........... Electronics are OK for some things, but I need to be able to put my thoughts on paper. I'm faster with a pencil than with a gizmo. I have pencils and clipboards of graph paper scattered all over the house and shop.
My sentiments exactly.

Tony B Retired woodworker, among other things.


"Strive for excellence and settle for completion" Tony B
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post #5 of 8 Old 06-12-2020, 05:44 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by allpurpose View Post
...........should I hire a personal mechanical pencil secretary to keep tabs of my new pencils? I wonder what she'd charge for those kinds of services..
No tellin' what it will cost to keep the lead in your pencil.

Tony B Retired woodworker, among other things.


"Strive for excellence and settle for completion" Tony B
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post #6 of 8 Old 06-12-2020, 09:06 PM
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Here's a three pack of .7mm HB lead for four bucks. It'll last a loooong time!

https://www.amazon.com/Pentel-C27BPH...roducts&sr=1-1

I only have one of the cheaper Pentel .7 mm pencils (made way back when they were yellow), but I've had only one tube of lead for it ever. I do go through an amount of .5mm, but only because I use mechanical pencils for just about everything. I also have one set up for red and one set up for blue lead.

Another $000,000,000.02 worth of advice,
Mark
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post #7 of 8 Old 06-14-2020, 08:09 AM Thread Starter
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I too was a budding artist back when having those kinds of skills could earn a pretty good living and sometime in my 30s those jobs began to evaporate faster than a teaspoon of water in a hot skillet so I began finding other work far more dangerous. I still hear kids talking about wanting to be an artist and wonder who is filling their heads with delusions of grandeur when almost nobody is paying for pen and pencil skills anymore. I had invested in expensive brushes, paints, paper and a lot more and that was back when I was just getting my family established with two infants and POOF! Off to the factory floor and pain..
Now I will occasionally stop in one of the few art supply houses left and the prices are unbelievable. Art in itself has all but been priced out of reach for anyone with real art talent unless they have a sugar daddy.. I never had one..lol
Hey, I'm just happy to be able to afford a modest mechanical pencil anymore. Those fine 000 sable brushes these days? You need a bank loan for a few of them now.

I showed the pencil to my 38 year old son and he scarcely knew what it was designed to do. My kids made quick work of my old art supplies back when they were first learning how to scribble on walls with crayons.. To be young again, huh?

I figured it's time to change my signature so hold your breath. This is it.
Impressive, huh?
Marty or Marty Farty if you feel mean.

Last edited by allpurpose; 06-14-2020 at 08:17 AM.
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post #8 of 8 Old 06-14-2020, 09:48 AM
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I use a Sanford ProTouch II 0.3 mm mechanical pencil, which was later sold under the Papermate brand. They were made in Japan. Unfortunately, they have been out of production for many years. I bought them a long time ago. They are at least 25 years old. If you are able to find a used one anywhere, it will be very expensive. These pencils are unlike any other. With a perfect weight and balance, they are a joy to hold and use. I do not know why they stopped making them, as they are some of the best pencils ever produced.

The Sanford ProTouch II has a high quality, thick brass clutch, much beefier than the GraphGear mechanism. The eraser is a white plastic (vinyl?) material, like the "Staedtler Mars" eraser. The eraser extends and retracts when you rotate the top. The knurled grip feels good in the hand, and the little ring can be rotated so the window shows the type of lead in the pencil: H, 2H, 3H, 4H, B, HB, and F.

I have always used ultra-fine-point mechanical pencils for my work, ever since I discovered them in college. I like the fine lines that they produce. Despite all the training (and teaching others) to write notebooks with an ink pen, I never did. Fortunately, I was never called to testify about my notes in court.

These days, I use 0.7 mm mechanical pencils in the shop. I would prefer to use 0.3 mm or 0.5 mm, but they are too delicate to draw on wood. Wood grain snaps the leads too frequently. I keep a 0.5 mm Pentel P205 in the shop, but rarely use it. For the finest lines on wood, I use marking knives and gauges, sometimes shaded with pencil so I can see them.

Another reason I like 0.7 mm pencils in the shop is that I can make them myself. My current favorite is a pen and pencil set made from zebrawood. I keep the pencil in my shop apron and use it for drawing on wood and writing notes in a woodworking notebook.

Many different 0.7 mm mechanical pencil kits are available for making your own pencils on a woodturning lathe. The pencil kit mechanisms are okay, but not great. A lot of complaints come from people who do not know how they work and how to unjam them, something that all mechanical pencil owners should learn.

Woodturning pencil kits in lead sizes other than 0.7 mm are uncommon, and most of them take thicker lead, like 2.0 mm. Some penturners remove the mechanism and tip from a 0.5 mm Pentel P205 or 0.3 mm Pentel P203 and use them for their own woodturned pencil. I have not tried it, yet. The Pentel "P20x"-type pencils are the only pencil mechanisms that support this trick. All other pencil mechanisms rely on machined shapes and threads inside the pencil body itself. (The Pentel P203 is not available in the US, but easily purchased from overseas.)

Photos:
* Sanford ProTouch II 0.3 mm mechanical pencil.
* Sanford ProTouch II, with eraser extended.
* Zebrawood pen and pencil set that I use in the shop, made with Rockler "Long Wood" pen and pencil kits.
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Name:	Zebrawood Pen and Pencil Set.JPG
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