This is the first in a series on the pencils of France. The series is unfortunately a few years late, as France, like several other western countries, appears to have relocated most pencil production to China.
Maped (Manufacture d’Articles de Precision et de Dessin) was founded in Annecy, France in 1947, and their online history indicates that their product diversification started in the 1990s. Their office supplies at the inexpensive end such as staplers and erasers are commonly found in Canada. Every Maped item I’ve personally seen hailed from China.
We see here the Black’Peps pencil. An official product page doesn’t reveal too much. The name doesn’t quite register with me, but maybe someone has an idea about the reference?
Available in five grades, and the HB with an eraser option, the pencil is in the triangular shape. The edges are orange, and the main body and cap are in a grayscale, with the darkness of the paint corresponding to the darkness of the lead. e.g. The B pencil has a darker finish than the HB pencil.
The pencil sharpens easily, and while the HB version leaves a nice dark line, the smoothness seems to be in the average or mildly scratchy range. I’m not sure I really like the black/orange pattern, but it is different.
My thanks to blog reader Frank for kindly sending me this pencil.