First, a reminder to enter our giveaway, which closes tonight at midnight. Link Here.
Second, here are five more well-used woodcase pencils that I found myself enjoying this weekend on my pencil tear.
- Dixon Ticonderoga Laddie. I received this in a trade. Currently I only have the eraserless version. I really need to get some more of these pencils. The wood case and the core are both slightly thicker than the typical Dixon #2, but just slightly. The pencil sits comfortably in the hand, and works well for longer writing sessions. The graphite is similar to General's Layout Pencil, if you've used that.
- Staedtler Wopex. I never in a million years thought that I would like this pencil as much as I do. The Wopex is an extruded (recycled) wood pencil that has a plasticky feel to it, and is HEAVY, making it your perfect pencil-fighting companion against people who don't know what they're doing and may not catch on until you've broken a half gross of their cheap Office Depot #2s. The Wopex has much lighter graphite than a typical "woodcase" pencil, but it has one advantage--it doesn't smear. I've read somewhere that the wopex graphite is "complastic," meaning that it's formulated like mechanical pencil lead, so there's very little ghosting and smearing if you want to use this pencil to write in your pocket notebooks on both sides of the page, as I do. Hand sharpen, because crank or automatic sharpeners don't auto-stop with the Wopex and will eat your pencil in one sitting.
- General's Semi-Hex #2. A great, classic yellow #2 pencil that's still made in the USA, and is fairly inexpensive to boot. I only wish they sold them by the gross. My one complaint is that the eraser is small, somewhat hard, and leaves something to be desired. I have a couple #1's as well, but as of now the #2 strikes a great balance between darkness and point retention. Sharpen one of these babies up with a long-point sharpener and you can write for a long time.
- General's Cedar Pointe [Sic] #2. Weird spelling is theirs, not mine. An excellent #2 with graphite similar to the Semi-Hex that you can find at most Hobby Lobby stores. Unvarnished cedar pencil smells great and develops a patina as you use it. The black eraser on this pencil is much better than the Semi-Hex eraser, IMHO. Again, I wish General's sold these by the gross.
- Dixon Oriole #2.5(F) (USA version): I picked up three dozen of these pencils about 10 years ago at my law school bookstore because I needed them for exams. I still have them today, and the quality of these things pretty much knocks any big-box store pencil out of the park. The lettering doesn't rub off, the eraser and ferrule are quality, and the graphite is dark for a 2.5 pencil. Knowing that these were Dixon's second-line pencil, after the Ticonderoga, pains me because I can only guess what I was missing when I failed to pick up the USA-made Ticonderoga when it was in circulation. (Modern Version)
I'm not sure how long my pencil craze will last. I tend to shift between obsessions on a weekly/bi-weekly basis, so stay tuned. Also, I trade pencils semi-regularly, so if you have anything unusual you think I might like, drop me a line and I will be happy to send you some from my collection/hoard in return.