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Mechanical Pencil Lust redux

Now my University research project is on the final straight, and I’ll have a new one starting sometime next year, I thought it time to have a look at some new mechanical pencils. Well, actually, I thought I had lost my previous favorite pencil, the Faber-Castell TK Fine Vario L 0.5mm. However I found it in a bag I had used yesterday to lug a book and my notepad to lunch. Undeterred, I thought it time to check out some new models including one I had previously lusted after before.

The original post is here – http://www.crazymcphee.net/x/2009/02/13/mechanical-pencil-lust/

The Pentel graph gear was my original favorite, I gave the Faber-Castell 2011 straight away to Lisa, it was inadequate and plasticly for my needs, but perfect for Lisa’s, she destroys those things and already used 0.7mm lead. The Graph Gear eventually couldn’t go the distance. The the pocket clip, which is also the spring clip that holds the pencil tip out, finally gave away after about a year. Also its knobbly grip texture made writing with it for a long period actually painful on the fingers. Even though it was by far the most stylish looking pencil of the three.

Pentel Graph Gear 1000 0.5mm

Pentel Graph Gear 1000 0.5mm

My firm favorite soon switched to and has stayed with the TK Fine Vario L. The one drawback with the TK Fine Vario L is that the tip sleeve doesn’t retract, so it’s not strictly pocket safe. This is OK for me most of the time as usually it travels in one of my laptop backpack’s pen/pencil slots.However it’s sometimes annoying, although it’s adjustable soft-hard feature is very nice. It also balances extremely well in the hand and the metal barrel grip is very comfortable. With its dark green plastic, hexagonal section, upper half, it does look very old fashioned. However this is offset by its excellent writing comfort and long retractable rubber length (the Pentel’s short rubber had quickly worn out, and the cap had to be taken off to use it).

Faber-Castell TK Fine Vario L 0.5mm

Faber-Castell TK Fine Vario L 0.5mm

So, I’ll continue to use the TK Fine Vario unless one of these just-purchased beauties can knock it off its perch (images link to the product page on Cult Pens):

OHTO Super Promecha Pencil PM-1500P

OHTO Super Promecha Pencil PM-1500P

OHTO Super Promecha Pencil PM-1500P

The OHTO Super Promecha one looks like a superb technical pen but we’ll see how comfortable that the “fine diamond-cut knurled pattern” grip really is, especially with sustained use taking research notes. It has a lot of interesting features.

Uni Kuru Toga Pencil 0.5mm M5-450

Uni Kuru Toga Pencil 0.5mm M5-450

Uni Kuru Toga Pencil 0.5mm M5-450

The Uni Kuru Toga claims to be a “self-sharpening” mechanical pencil. Every time the lead touches the paper it rotates the lead, resulting in a conical shape on the end of the lead. It’s pretty cheap, so I got it to find out if this miraculous claim is true or not. I ordered the orange one.

rotring Tikky 3 Pencil 0.5mm Colour Barrel

rotring Tikky 3 Pencil 0.5mm Colour Barrel

rotring Tikky 3 Pencil 0.5mm Colour Barrel

A cheap and cheerful pencil, it’s always handy to have some of those for emergencies, in the car, people wanting to borrow them, etc. I got the red one.

That’s it – total price GBP 33.93 including GBP 10 in shipping. The Ohto is naturally more than half of that total cost, but given the strength of the AUD at the moment I though it a good time to shop for an item like this.