The definitions vary, but, in general, we consider that a mechanical pencil is any pencil with an advanced mechanism that drives the advance in some way. We will also mention the clutch pencils briefly, where the cable is released when a button is held down, but we consider that it is a separate type. Wooden pencils are not counted here, but that does not mean we do not love them too. Usually, made of metal or plastic, mechanical pencils are devices capable of holding a lead pencil that can be slowly released from its hollow bodies. Unlike traditional wooden pens, these pencils do not need to be sharpened. As long as they are filled with lead, they can be recharged continuously.
Mechanical pencils are available at all prices, and high-end models are typically manufactured with attractive metals, and low-end models are usually made from regular plastic. They also usually come equipped with attached erasers and pocket hangers.
Mechanical pencils can be called different things in different places, by different people. In the United Kingdom, ‘automatic pencil’ and ‘propelling pencil’ are relatively common terms, and people can also refer to ‘clicky pencils.’ Those designed for technical drawing can be called “drawing pencils” (or even “drawing” in British English) or “technical pencils,” although these terms have also been used for traditional clutch pencils.
What are the advantages of owning a mechanical pencil?
Compared to typical wooden pencils, mechanical pencils shine. Not only are they able to maintain a large amount of lead at the same time, but they also do not need to be sharpened. This allows you to write continuously for long periods without having to sharpen your pencil and lose the line of thought. Another benefit offered by mechanical pencils is that their erasers can usually be replaced after they have worn out. This can not be done with wooden pencils, at least not with the same style as the draft.
There are other good reasons why you might prefer a mechanical pencil over a wooden pencil.
- Its sharpness – if the cable is thin enough, it is not necessary to sharpen it, just keep writing or drawing. Not only does it save time and effort, but the worsening can be complicated.
- Constant line width – when a wooden box pencil is newly sharpened, write a fragile line. As soon as you have written a bit, the path becomes thicker and thicker. With a mechanical pencil, the line says the same thing, making it a more predictable tool.
- Constant balance – as a wooden pencil gets shorter, the balance changes. Mechanical pencils do not change while you use to lead. It is not very important for everyone, but some artists find that this makes a big difference for them.
- Rechargeable – no chunks, just keep putting more leads. There are no trees to cut. It can be argued that mechanical pencils are the most environmentally friendly option if you use them for a long time. However, since cables are packaged in plastic boxes, it is not a simple calculation to know which is better, but there is much to be said about a single tool that you can use for years.
- Choice of styles and materials – mechanical pencils can vary significantly in appearance: some look like technical tools, others look like luxury items, and others look like simple pencils with plastic bodies. Some even look like wooden pencils!
Mechanical Pencil – Advantages and Disadvantages
The positive, as well as the negative characteristics of a mechanical pencil, are explained here.
Advantages and disadvantages of the mechanical pencil are:
- Mechanical pencils are available in many different designs.
- They are very durable.
- A mechanical pencil provides a consistent stroke width.
- An integrated storage tank always provides for the replenishment of mines.
- There must always be a supply of mines.
- The mines break off more quickly because they are excellent.
What are the different types of mechanical pencils?
For the most part, mechanical pencils are relatively simple to use, with most of them, just click on the button on end to pull out more lead when you need it. Retract the cable by holding the switch and gently pushing the cable inward. When one end of the cable is exhausted, keep clicking until the next one appears. When outside, add more wires of the correct size, usually through a hole under the button, often hidden under the eraser. The different types of mechanical pencils are detailed below:
- Twist-Click Mechanisms– This mechanism is more common in pencils that are designed to be combined with a matching pen. Turn the upper part of the barrel and the cable advances. Release and the top jumps back, but the advantage remains. Turn and keep pressed, and you can push the cable inwards. It’s like clicky mechanisms, but twisting takes the place of pushing. These usually open in the middle to add more potential customers. On the inside, this type of pencil often uses an adapter, similar to the recharging of the corresponding pen, which contains the entire mechanism of the pencil and the lead tube. The pen is a pen with a fitting adapter to turn it into a pencil. Usually, there is a cap on the top of the adapter that you remove to add more leads.
- Mechanisms of continuous rotation – these are not so common these days, but there are some around, such as Faber-Castell’s emotion. The interior is a kind of screw mechanism, where you roll the tip while using it. When a tap is finished, remove the small piece and insert a new cable into the mechanism and rewind it to the top. Sometimes, these only have an advantage, but often they have a place to store spare parts. The emotion, for example, has space for six additional cables hidden behind the nose cone.
- Agitation Mechanisms – Another solution to the problem of stopping to click on more lead is the shaking mechanism: shake and move the pencil down firmly, and a hidden weight on the inside does the job of pressing the button for you. Usually, these also have a button in the usual place, but a quick movement of the doll takes less time to scribble your notes.
- Self-feeding pencils– Some pencils do not force you to stop to extend more lead, at least until you reach the end of a lead stick, and you have to click on the next one. How these works can be a bit unexpected since you need to write almost without any visible clue. There is a plastic cone (usually) around the cable. Typically, you must be sure to click on more lead before it wears out enough to reach the support tube or cone, but not with a self-feeding pencil. Just keep writing or drawing. When the cable wears out enough for the cone to touch the paper, the funnel is pushed back a bit. A spring inside pushes it back, returning some lead down. The result is that the cable will wear out until it reaches this cone.
How to use a mechanical pencil
- Before you start writing, press on the cap until the mine emerges from the tip.
- With your finger, press down on the cap, and simultaneously, gently touch the surface of the paper with the mine until the emerging mine is no longer visible. You can now start writing.
- When writing, make sure that the mine does not exceed the tip. To advance too much, mine can cause its break during writing.
- The tip protects the mine and prevents its breakage. The edge of the advice is rounded to allow smooth writing without damaging the paper. As the mine progressively shortens, the tip automatically slides back with the mine. It is therefore not necessary to advance this mine AGAIN.
- When the tip retracts completely, press the ONCE button once to advance the mine. If the tip slides back after pressing the button once, the lead is too short. The remaining small piece of mine can cause a blockage of the mine. Take off than mine.
- If the mine gets too short, the tip will retract suddenly as you write. The remaining little piece of mine can cause a blockage of the mine. Press the button until the small spare part of mine is out.
- When you have finished writing, retract the tip entirely.
- With your finger, press down on the cap, and simultaneously gently touch the paper surface with the tip. Retracting the tip completely will prevent injury or damage to your belongings.
- You must use it only for writing or drawing.
- The tip is piercing, handle it with care.
- To prevent suffocation or injury, do not put the hood, eraser, needle, tip, or other pencil elements in your mouth.
- Keep out of reach of young children.
- If you drop the pencil, it may cause malfunctions.
- When transporting or storing the pen, LORENZ retracts the tip completely to prevent injury or damage to your belongings. See [ Transport or store the LORENZ pencil . ]
- If the mine gets too short, the tip will suddenly retract while you write. The remaining small piece of mine can cause a blockage. Press the button until the small spare part of mine is out.
- If you press too hard on the surface when writing, the tip may cut into the paper.
How to replace the mine in a mechanical pencil
The mechanical pencils are handy to use due to their excellent tips. They make the constant sharpening of the pencil unnecessary. With a click or a twist, a new sharp point appears and is ready to use. The only requirement is the occasional need to add a new mine.
- Find a mine of the correct size. Not all pencil mines are of the same diameter. Look at the mechanical pencil to know the size of the mine. Printed on it, often near the eraser, you will find the correct size for a spare mine (0.5 mm or 0.7 mm).
- Search for a “click button.” It can be the entire top of the pencil or a small button on the side. (If there is no click button on the pen, go to Step 3). Hold the button while hitting the mechanical pencil in a vertical position. (This allows the particles in the mine to fall). Carefully insert the spare shaft into the tube and then release the button. Click on it several times until the newly replaced mine is in the correct position.
- Look for a “turn” mechanism. You can turn some mechanical pencils by turning a small section clockwise. You can find the area to be rotated on top of the mechanical pencil, or in the section closest to the tip. (If there is no turning mechanism, continue with Step 4). Carefully turn the section to the right to open the tube completely. Enter the mine to the preferred depth and then turn the section to the left to close it.
- Remove the eraser. On some models of a mechanical pencil, an open tube to insert the mine is hidden under the eraser. To replace the pencil lead, simply place a piece in the tube. In these models, you can remove the eraser quickly and easily. If it does not come out easily, leave the effort, and continue with Step 5.
- Pull and rotate the mechanical pencil gently to see if it is disassembled into two pieces. Some models are separated to reveal the tube that contains the mine. Put the mine in the tube and reconnect the mechanical pencil to use it.
- Get rid of the disposable models if you can not replace the lead pencil mine. Disposable models are not rechargeable. Just pull the mechanical pencil.
If the tip of the mechanical pencil slides out, the mechanism is still activated, or the size of the spare part is incorrect.
Never force the mine in a mechanical pencil. If it gets stuck, it can be difficult or impossible to eliminate. If the mine does not enter or is of the wrong size, the mechanism is not activated, the mechanical pencil is not rechargeable, or a piece of mine has already been stuck in the pipe.
Somewhere between the application of notes on your phone and the Ticonderogas box in the back to school section is the mechanical pencil. If you carry a laptop (which we recommend), you will need a reliable and EDC-worthy writing utensil to accompany it. Pens are an option, but if you like the feeling of lead in the paper and the freedom to erase without wearing Wite-Out, a mechanical pencil is your best choice. Whether you plan to lose one each week or keep it in a glass case on your solid oak desk, you have options, but it’s easy to go wrong and end up with something you’ll never use.
Whether you’re at school, at work, or have a need to draw and draw, a mechanical pencil is a consistent and reliable writing tool that you should have on hand. You will no longer lose your train of thoughts while trying to sharpen the tip of your pencil. It is as simple as pressing a button. Attractive, durable, and highly functional writing tools such as the Mechanical Pencil Staedtler allow you to write for long periods with great comfort and consistency. Do not you want to know what writing will be a horrible task? Invest in a solid mechanical pencil.