Papermate Black Pearl eraser

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Papermate Black Pearl eraser

My thanks to Diane for kindly sending me some Black Pearl erasers in June.

Compared to the other black erasers we have looked at, which were all roughly block shape, the Black Pearl is distinguished by a flattened oval shape. Just for this alone, I like it. It is portable, easy to grip, and works well.

Papermate Black Pearl eraser

It seems harder, and a bit denser, than other black erasers. Perhaps this is a manufacturing requirement for a thin eraser.

Just how well does it work? I used the same Rhodia pad and Staedtler Mars pencil as in the previous review, and have added a Palomino pencil.

Papermate Black Pearl eraser

It erases not quite as well as the Papermate Exam eraser. The softer erasers seem to have an advantage with this particular graphite/paper combination.

See also: Black erasers

Black erasers

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Black erasers

There was a question about how the PaperMate Exam Standard compared to other black erasers, so I thought I’d try a small side by side comparison.

Black erasers

As was done with previous eraser tests, the Staedtler Mars Lumograph 100 and a Rhodia pad were used as our reference pencil and paper.

Black erasers

I also added in Pentel Ain 2B 0.7mm mechanical pencil lead for comparison.

Black erasers

The erasers tested were:

  • PaperMate Exam Standard
  • Factis Black 18
  • Seed Kesu Gomu
  • Faber-Castell 7089-20
  • Mitsubishi Boxy EP-60BX
  • Some black erasers I’m aware of that I don’t have are the Papermate Black Pearl, Carta Pura, and Stabilo Exam Grade.

    So what is the raison d’être of these erasers? I don’t really know. The only one I’ve generally seen at retail in Canada is the Factis. I heard it suggested that charcoal erasure is the purpose of black erasers. How do they differ from a standard white vinyl eraser? Here, I know even less. It is entirely possible that they are just dyed standard erasers.

    Black erasers

    Basically, I thought they would be alike – but testing exposed some differences.

    Black erasers

    First, the polymer Ain lead erased better than the ceramic Staedler lead, which is consistent with previous findings.

    Second – picking the winner was tougher than picking the loser. Two were notably worse at erasure – the Kesu Gomu and the Faber-Castell, the Faber-Castell being the worst.

    The winner is, to my eye, the Boxy, though the Papermate and Factis also did extremely well.

    My general impression is that the erasers are on the softer, gentler side.

    A couple of notes about the erasers –

    I don’t find the Exam Standard officially acknowledged on Papermate’s website. It shipped in a blister pack of three, and the erasers are wrapped in paper sleeves.

    Factis is based in Girona, Spain. The eraser has a cellophane band, and is the only eraser with markings.

    The Kesu Gomu is from Seed of Japan. It is a delightful eraser, and some great photos can be seen at Lexikaliker. I am not sure if it is meant to be a novelty eraser, but I am treating it as if meant for duty.

    The Faber-Castell has rounded edges which are called a “comfort feature”. Interesting, as many erasers tout their sharp edges as a feature.

    The Boxy has an unusual square cross-section.

    Black erasers

    I thought I was done, but decided on one more challenge – to investigate the charcoal erasure function.

    Black erasers

    Black erasers

    I tried both a charcoal pencil and willow charcoal on a Fabriano journal. As one would expect, the natural charcoal erased much more easily than the compressed charcoal in the pencil. Yet, the charcoal marks don’t really erase.

    Papermate Exam Standard Speederase eraser

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    Papermate Exam Standard Speederase eraser

    If you’re going to have exam pencils, you might as well have exam erasers, right?

    Papermate Exam Standard Speederase eraser

    The Papermate Exam Standard Speederase appears to match the corresponding Papermate pencil, except that it was purchased at retail in Canada.

    It comes in a very unusual black, and is labeled as being latex free, smudge resistant, and dust-free.

    Papermate Exam Standard Speederase eraser

    The eraser detritus forms a very interesting pattern.

    Trying it out on Staedtler 168 exam pencil markings on a Handbook Journal Co. Quattro notepad, it does the job, though not perfectly.


    Papermate Exam Standard Speederase eraser

    Papermate Exam Standard Speederase eraser

    Uchida Proeraser becomes a 3.8mm leadholder

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    Uchida Proeraser

    I discovered the Uchida Proeraser some while ago while browsing the uncomfortable chair. It is a nicely-finished all-metal clutch holder for erasers. Most unusual.

    The one I ordered came with an ink eraser.

    As it takes an eraser of 3.8mm diameter, it occurred to me that it should be able to handle a 3.8mm lead. A less common size, Pilot, Koh-I-Noor, and Caran d’Ache all make leads and holders in this diameter.

    Uchida Proeraser

    The most accessible pencil in this category is probably the Pilot Croquis, available at many art supply stores.

    Uchida Proeraser

    I put a Pilot refill in the Uchida – and found I had a very usable and nice looking 3.8mm clutch leadholder.

    Very thin erasers

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    Very thin erasers

    Here are a couple of amazingly thin erasers.

    The Tombow Mono zero is a 2.3mm diameter cyclindrical eraser, dispensed by clicking the cap. It really does seem like a mechanical pencil in both form and function.

    I thought this eraser was probably a borderline novelty, but it worked quite well over a period of days. You wouldn’t use it to erase several lines of text, but it is great for smaller tasks such as changing a line fragment, digit or letter.

    I like the portability as well.

    Very thin erasers

    The Pentel Clic Eraser Hyperaser is a rectangular metal housed eraser. It has a dispense mechanism similar to that of most stick erasers, such as the Staedtler 528 50. A clip as well!

    This is an ink eraser. It seemed to work well on tests with ballpoint ink, and less well with fountain pen ink.

    I wasn’t expecting much, but both seemed pretty good.

    The main problem I see it that both require yet more proprietary refill types. The Mono zero in particular seems like it will require a replacement eraser soon enough.

    Very thin erasers

    My thanks to der Lexikaliker for the Pentel eraser.

    Faber-Castell Perfection 7056 eraser pencil

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    Faber-Castell Perfection 7056 eraser pencil

    Wow, perfection! Or, maybe not…

    The Perfection 7056 is a woodcase pencil format eraser from Faber-Castell.

    Unusual looking by pencil standards, it is a very lightly hued/pale (almost ash) woodcase pencil with a light pink eraser core. It walks and talks like a pencil – but acts like an eraser.

    Faber-Castell Perfection 7056 eraser pencil

    The format provides convenience and a familiar grip – if you can hold a pencil, you can hold this eraser. It also provides an always “clean” eraser surface for those who prefer or require this – just sharpen, and the eraser is like new.

    As to the eraser itself – I am a bit confused. The photo shows marks from a Staedtler Ergosoft in HB on a Rhodia pad. The right side was erased by the Perfection, and for comparison, the left side was erased by a Staedler mars plastic eraser.

    Faber-Castell Perfection 7056 eraser pencil

    Faber-Castell Perfection 7056 eraser pencil

    What a difference. The Perfection has several pluses, but as an eraser, it seems quite sub-standard compared to typical format quality rectangular erasers. One note: it did seem very gentle on paper – perhaps the forte is in a specialty area.

    Do you use this eraser? What do you use it for?