Perfectly sharpened pencils

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31 Responses to “Perfectly sharpened pencils”

  1. GawainLavers says:

    There is only one way to perfectly sharpen a pencil.  This is the specific tool I use.

    With circular sharpeners you wind up with a tip that cannot be modulated to choose broad or narrow lines, you never get lines narrow enough, and the tip doesn’t stay consistently narrow for an appreciable amount of time.

    • Andrea says:

       If one of my colored pencils proves brittle, I’ll resort to a a pocket knife. The trouble is, I’m not very good at getting a consistent point. It takes a lot of work, and colored pencils wear down fast.

    • Antinous / Moderator says:

      You use the tip?  With Prismacolor, I use the side.

    • capnmarrrrk says:

      Right up to the point TSA takes it away from you because you thought you lost it and it was in your bag the whole time.

      • GawainLavers says:

        I’m sure they’ll take away a pencil sharpener these days too, but yes, I’ve lost about 5 that way.  Actually, lost the last one going to jury duty.

        I’m old, but I can remember when they were about $20.  Absent-mindedness is costing me substantially more now.

        On a side note, I did this once in Brazil.  My connecting flight was going to leave in about 30 minutes; I swung by the Varig desks just in case, but the line was about eighty long.  I stood there for a moment, dejected, and a staff member came up who had apparently been checking every person in the line to see what it was in particular they needed.  They took down my flight number, took the knife, and it was waiting for me in an envelope in Sao Paulo.

  2. DoctorTecate says:

    What would David Rees do?

  3. The orange colored Palomino version of the KUM sharpener as pictured in this post is available at this link along with the Blackwing version  http://www.pencils.com/accessories/sharpeners

  4. memoid says:

    Every gentleman should carry a pocket-size two-hole pencil sharpener, for those lonely hours after a good brandy in the parlor.

  5. CliffordS says:

    Instead of step 2, you should use a sanding block.  It will change your life.  

  6. BurntHombre says:

    I never realized that’s why so many portable pencil sharpeners have a bigger and a smaller hole. Holy cow, I’ve been doing it wrong all this time.

  7. Danny Brizzi says:

    yeah I was a bit depressed to find this out.

  8. SomeGuyNamedMark says:

    A pencil?  What is this tool that you speak of?

  9. David Lanteigne says:

    One of the advantages of using a soft, dark pencil is that it is not necessary to bear down to make a distinct mark.  A  lightly held pencil used with minimal force may make for a more pleasant hand-writing experience. (For 45 years I was doing it the wrong way.)  Pencils, such as drawing pencils, come in a variety of hardnesses so the same pressure can produce a variety of marks.

  10. Stanley_2@@1 says:

    This is a great sharpener — but I REALLY wish the hinge to open the sharpener to empty is wasn’t simply a thin point in the plastic. It breaks way too soon and makes an otherwise well-designed item seem cheap. For a sharpener well designed enough to take replacement blades, I wish I didn’t have to keep putting packing tape on it to act as a hinge. Not to nit-pick, it comes from a place of love.

  11. I really like my Kuru Toga mechanical pencil. It rotates the lead as you write, always keeping the tip sharp, rather then letting it flatten on one edge.
    http://amzn.to/Wkt4n5

  12. pjcamp says:

    Perhaps a pen would be in order.

  13. i’ve sworn by staedtler’s mars 780 drafting pencils for many years.. 2b graphite and a square of ~300 grit sandpaper and i’m set. it takes 3 seconds to mod the tip however i need.

    (pic is from a prospective beer label.. didn’t pan out =p)

  14. stasike says:

    You aren’t doing it the best way.
    Have a look at this monograph ;-)
    http://www.amazon.com/How-Sharpen-Pencils-Theoretical-Contractors/dp/1612190405

  15. Thorzdad says:

    “I use soft pencils and I bear down hard when I write.”
    You’re doing it wrong. The beauty of a soft lead is how little force is required to make a mark.

  16. Beanolini says:

    You are left with a cylinder of graphite sticking out

    I’m feeling pedantic today, so I’d like to point out that it’s not just graphite. Most likely 20-30% of that dark substance is clay and wax.

  17. capnmarrrrk says:

    I’ve blown through my blades. You can buy replacement blades here http://www.pencilthings.com/category-s/83.htm

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