Stationery Magazine

Stationery Magazine

I can’t read much of it, yet it seems to speak very well to many interests of mine.

Red and blue pencils, leadholders, quirky office accessories – they’re all here, and featured prominently.

The magazine is in Japanese, with about 150 glossy pages crammed full of photos of woodcase pencils, mechanical pencils, leadholders, erasers, sharpeners, staplers, hole punches, rulers, and much more.

Stationery Magazine

Yes, they have a page on Vernier calipers:

Stationery Magazine

Sharpeners also.

Stationery Magazine

Stationery Magazine

Pentel Multi8

Pentel Multi8

Mechanical pencils with multiple usable leads can be seen at online auction sites or at the uncomfortable chair, though I have never previously seen one in person.

I also remember school days, when those Bic four colour ballpoints became popular.

My opinion was that they were a gimmick – a solution to no particular problem.

So when I heard of a pencil that used eight leads, I was somewhat surprised. And when I learned that those leads were the 2mm diameter used by leadholders, the tide seemed to turn, and I decided to get one.

Pentel Multi8

I think I wanted to see just how far this idea could be taken. It is probably the oddest writing implement yet seen at pencil talk.

Pentel Multi8

The pencil exterior looks kind of cheap, like something one would find at those suburban big box office supply stores.

The mechanism is quite interesting – each lead has a small metal 4mm sleeve at the end, and eight anchors hold the leads by these sleeves. Rotating the clip to a colour relases that lead, which can then be held by the clutch mechanism.

Pentel Multi8

Eight leads are supplied. They are (clockwise, starting at the upper left): red, blue, brown, orange, yellow, green, Diazo non copy, and PPC non copy.

Pentel Multi8

The non-copy varieties are intriguing offerings. It’s strange that a regular graphite core didn’t make the cut.

I found the pencil very easy to use. The variety of colours makes it very useful for organizational tasks that depend on colour coding. Alternately, the Multi8 could be seen as a compact colour pencil set for light use.

Pentel Multi8

The pencil came with refills in each colour, an instruction leaflet (English/Japanese), and a small lead sharpener.

Pentel Multi8

It is a very nice, almost unique item. I gather Pentel also manufacture a few related versions, some of which have ballpoint offerings. This particular model is the “Multi8 PH802 for checking use.” My only problems were some lead breakage, and a rattling sound that the pencil makes.

Sanford Turquoise 02022 2mm leadholder

Sanford Turquoise 02022 2mm leadholder

This leadholder represents an interesting extension of the venerable Turquoise pencil line.

Made in Japan (the pencils are made in the U.S.), it is a “Sanford Turquoise” rather than a “Prismacolor Turquoise”.

Sanford Turquoise 02022 2mm leadholder

The body colour seemed correct in my memory, but next to a pencil, it is much closer to blue than turquoise.

Sanford Turquoise 02022 2mm leadholder

It is a basic spring clutch mechanism leadholder, with a metal clutch and grip, and a plastic body. The clutch does recede into the pencil when no lead is being clutched. There is also a metal clip.

It does have a clean look, and is perfectly usable.

Tortoise Lead Pointer

Tortoise Lead Pointer

Image used courtesy of isu at the uncomfortable chair.

The Tortoise Lead Pointer is a remarkable all-in-one unit for blade sharpening of leads. It can handle:

1.18mm: Traditional mechanical pencils (pre-1950?), and today, Yard-O-Led, some Autopoint, and some Retro 51 pencils.

2.0mm: A standard lead diameter.

3.15mm: A standard lead diameter.

3.8mm: Less common – used by the Pilot Croquis, and some Koh-I-Noor models.

5.6mm: A standard lead diameter.

Two sharpening angles are offered for 2.0mm leads.

I like the playful name, the design, and the focus on the leadholder culture. Though there are individual sharpeners and lead pointers on the market, I have never seen such an all-in-one unit. I look forward to getting one.

The product can be purchased at bundoki.com.

The design behind the product is thanks to U5 Architects Unit.

Please see the review and additional photos at the uncomfortable chair.

Staedtler 925 25 20 2.0mm leadholder

Staedtler 925 25 20 2.0mm leadholder

Wow, this is just a beautiful leadholder.

Staedtler 925 25 20 2.0mm leadholder

Made by Staedtler Japan, it has a number of interesting features, not least of which is a push button advance. The 2.0mm lead advances by clicking the cap. It functions just like a regular mechanical pencil, but with 2.0mm lead. Very nice.

Staedtler 925 25 20 2.0mm leadholder

It has a cylindrical sleeve, a knurled grip similar to that of the Staedtler pencil holder, lead degree window, a clip, and the lead diameter printed on the cap – as if there could be any doubt!

Staedtler 925 25 20 2.0mm leadholder

The general intent seems to be to bring mechanical pencil features to the 2.0mm leadholder. It may not be to everyone’s taste, but in addressing the chosen task, I think Staedtler has succeeded!

Bic Criterium 2613 2.0mm leadholder

Bic Criterium 2613 2.0mm leadholder

Bic needs no introduction. Makers of much more than ballpoint pens, their many woodcase pencils seem to rarely be exported outside of France. Similary leadholders. I would love to be able to try some modern pencils from the country that gave the world the technique of blending graphite with clay – but I have rarely seen them for sale.

The Criterium’s website says that this leadholder has been in production since 1939, and comes in plastic and aluminum varieties. I would love to get the aluminum version, but feel lucky enough to have found any model.

The Uncomfortable Chair (in Japanese) and Leadholder.com both provide some excellent photos of the aluminum version.

The 2613 has a hexagonal black plastic body, metal clutch and tip, metal clip, and a metal cap. The plastic feels quite solid, and the pencil (with full lead) weighs in at a comfortable 9.5g.

Bic Criterium 2613 2.0mm leadholder

The clutch is opened and closed by pressing the cap. The cap is innovative, containing an eraser and sharpener. The sharpener is literally a hole in the cap, which at first glance appears to be just a design element. It is one of those elegant ideas that seems obvious once you know about it – yet someone had to think of this idea and design the implementation.

Bic Criterium 2613 2.0mm leadholder

The grip area has grooves in the edges of the hexagonal body. I find it to be quite comfortable.

Bic Criterium 2613 2.0mm leadholder

Overall, I like it. The understated look and the cap sharpener are the winning features.