This is a solid pencil, machined in the United States, out of raw brass or aluminum. We are a little late to the party, since we just got our prototype this weekend, but I had to get this out. I love this pencil.
This is a solid pencil, as solid as a Space Pen — perhaps more so because there is no heavy brass refill rattling around inside. And the raw aluminum is wonderful. Because there is no coating, it seems to have a low specific heat. Mine gets very cold in my cozy house and then warms up quickly in my warm hands. And the naked metal, machined as it is, lends itself to a nice grip. This is something I don’t find in most metal writing tools.
The plunger and clip are very attractive, extending the simple design of the pencil. I really like the black eraser and clip. The clip comes separated from the pencil, but I found it more useful with the clip attached and appreciated it’s inclusion. The click action is pleasant and feels like a Bic mechanical pencil made of aluminum. I assure you; that’s not an insult. I have trouble finding fault with that pencil myself.
There are a few gripes. First, I am not usually a fan of .5mm leads, and the lack of retracting needle makes the pencil rather sharp. Finally, the innards are plastic. But I think this pencil more than makes up for these few issues.
First, the business end of the pencil — it’s perfect. It is machined so precisely that it does not need a needle. There is no lateral movement of the lead whatsoever. One of my pet peeves about mechanical pencils in general is that the leads move. Because of the shape of the nosecone, the lead feels more like a .7mm to me in that it does not feel sharp. The tip of the pencil itself is a little sharp, but I don’t make a habit of stabbing myself in the chest or arm with my writing implements — not lately anyway. The plastic innards are my least favorite thing about this pencil. But I wonder if the solid build would protect the mechanism somehow? At any rate, designer Andrew Sanderson promises that he’ll fix it or make you a new one. And that’s a pretty serious guarantee.
You have three more days to back this on Kickstarter. If you like mechanical pencils at all, especially ones designed to last forever, definitely check this out. I was really surprised to find that I reach for this pencil pretty often, largely because I really like the feel of the metal. I’d definitely buy a brass one in the future.
[We received this prototype at no cost. Opinions are our own.]