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"woodless Graphite" Pencils


ISW_Kaputnik
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Because I've been trying a variety of pencils lately for drawing, I recently bought these "woodless" ones to try out, thinking they might be good for shading, at least. Woodless in this case doesn't mean mechanical, I have plenty of those, or clutch pencils, I have some of those, too, with different lead sizes. These are just big hunks of graphite, partly coated with lacquer. You're supposed to be able to sharpen them by normal methods, knife, sanding block, or sharpener.

 

I've been trying them out along with my wood pencils for some drawing. They are pretty good for shading, or for when I want a dull point. The "EE" designation for the darkest lead is a bit of an odd one. After a little internet searching, it appears that it was an equivalent of 8B used by some pencil manufacturers, although in this set, it's the grade after 8B. In any case, it's just another extra dark lead.

 

Anyway, I just thought this was interesting. I'm not making any particular recommendation for or against them, but thought I'd see if anyone else uses them.

 

 

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"So convenient a thing it is to be a reasonable creature, since it enables one to find or make a reason for everything one has a mind to do."

 

- Benjamin Franklin

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They look interesting. How do they compare to the thicker clutch pencil leads? I think I'd be afraid of dropping and breaking them!

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I have used a variety of them, mostly for bold marks and shading. Some I have found to crumble. More expensive brands tend to perform better for me. I have broken them if I apply too much pressure on the paper.

Also I never use a pencil sharpener on them. If I need a thin line I just use a regular woodcased drawing pencil. I prefer 3b or softer.

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What about the “forever pencils” like the ones made by Napkin? They aren’t truly graphite but work similarly.

Secundum Artem

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What about the “forever pencils” like the ones made by Napkin? They aren’t truly graphite but work similarly.

 

I haven't actually used one of those, but they're a quite different idea, as far as I can tell, with a metal tip that will always have some residue to rub off on the paper, so that they will last a very long time, if not literally forever. The woodless graphite ones will actually wear down just like any wood cased one, although it will be a while before I know how long they last.

 

The Mont Marte ones that I got seem quite satisfactory. I have tried sharpening a couple of them in a regular sharpener just to see what would happen, and it worked quite well, but I'm not sure I'll bother with that again, as I did get these mostly for shading; I might just sand some of the coating off next time. I've been using the EE one the most, as I've been experimenting with drawings that have strong contrasts between light and dark, and if I want just to blacken an area, it works really well.

 

They do seem likely to be brittle, and I'm keeping them at home, not taking them with my travel kit, but so far I haven't broken or crumbled them. When these get down to just stubs, I might buy another set, as they weren't terribly expensive for art pencils. I'll see how I feel about them then.

 

I'm just an amateur artist, not particularly good, and someone more skilled might have a different opinion, or prefer something else.

"So convenient a thing it is to be a reasonable creature, since it enables one to find or make a reason for everything one has a mind to do."

 

- Benjamin Franklin

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I did try a Napkin forever pencil and while it worked, the friction on the paper was very high and the line was very dim and hard to see. So I’m sure one would have a hard time using it for drawing

Secundum Artem

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I have some Faber Castell Pitt Graphite, which should be similar. I have an HB in my EDC bag since 1 year and it is quite robust. Or, at least, I haven't broken it yet. I really like the weight (way more than a wooden pencil) and the feeling writing with it.

I don't sharpen it, just turn it while writing or sketching.

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