Maped Black’Peps pencil

Maped Black'Peps pencil

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?

Maped Black'Peps pencil

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.

11 Replies to “Maped Black’Peps pencil”

  1. Nice to see this theme!
    I still have a few by Baignol et Farjon, but am not sure these are still made. I think just about all that’s left is Conte / Bic – still made in France.

  2. Hi,

    Bought a couple of Black’Peps – B and 2B today. Indeed, the black is satisfyingly blackish. A rather peculiar feature of the pencil I noticed – when rolling the pencil slightly while sketching, the edge of the lead went harder on the paper as if the lead there was harder then on the plain sides of it. No scratching was felt, but I guess the pencil needs good sharpening.

    Nice product anyway, well suitable for drawing and sketching.

  3. Hi,

    I have the full range of it :) They actually have 5 Grades (From 2B to 2H) with or without eraser end.

    I usually like this Brand a lot because they always have Innovative products… You didn’t mention it in your post but pencils are from Light Grey / Orange (for 2H and H) to Black / Orange (for B and 2B) which makes it easier for people (like me) to understand !

  4. After searching for the Black Peps for weeks (including,,, and other potential online distributors), I finally sent an email to Maped headquarters. If Maped is trying to keep this pencil a secret and out of the hands of writers, they sure are doing a good job!

    I look forward to receiving my box straight from Maped =)

  5. hey guys i don’t know, if this pencils are still producted in France, but in Morocco here you can found it anywhere ,it’s cost 0.4 euro.

  6. Even though all supermarkets started stocking Maped products in the UK, and there seem to be more and more Maped products every time I look I haven’t seen this pencil yet in the UK. It does look really good on your pictures, I’ll definitely buy them to try out when I see them.

  7. Purchased the Maped HB=2 with eraser in Sparta, Greece. Which is where I first saw them, and did not see them in Athens or elsewhere. Liked the colours and the feel of the triangular body. The lead is hard but smooth-writing, no scratching for me…it must depend on the paper? I used it in a moleskin notebook and had no issues for writing or thumbnail sketches. All in all, once I got past the strange feel of the triangular shape, I rather enjoyed using this pencil. So I purchased 2 boxes from Amazon (online), when I returned to Canada.

  8. Funny you should mention the scratchiness. The few times I’ve had one of these, that’s kinda what I like about them. I don’t know how I feel about the slight rubberized finish. I kind of hate that on anything electronic, but I suppose it’s okay on a pencil, but I do like a dark line, and a bit of a tactile “something.” I like the little grit that these have.

    Still partial to my ol’ reliable Classmates though (the school supply ones).

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