Is something missing?

7 comments

Lyra Groove, Stabilo EASYgraph

A new pencil trend – scallops or grooves cut into finished triangular pencils, exposing the underlying wood. Seen here, the Stabilo EASYgraph (right and left hand versions) and the LYRA Groove. Lexikaliker reports that Koh-I-Noor will be introducing a similar product in 2011.

Aimed at children, the idea is that the grip is improved, facilitating a good grasp and writing technique.

I wonder, what do the manufacturers do with the excavated pieces?

Lyra Groove, Stabilo EASYgraph

Comparing the two pencils, the Groove seems relatively simple – round scoops. The EASYgraph comes in two versions, right and left handed, with oval indentations matching the “correct writing grip”. The EASYgraph did feel much more comfortable in my hand.

Lyra Groove, Stabilo EASYgraph

The EASYgraph also has something very unusual – the lettering in different orientations according to the handedness of the pencil:

Lyra Groove, Stabilo EASYgraph

For writing, the Groove seemed quite rough and scatchy, while the EASYgraph was comparatively smooth.

My sincere thanks to Gunther from Lexikaliker, who sent all three of these pencils to me eons ago.

FILA’s global pencil

11 comments

Dixon Ticonderoga, Fila Temagraph, Lyra Temagraph

Made by the FILA Group, these pencils from subsidiary brands appear to be roughly the same. They are made at FILA’s main plant in China, and sold under established national brand names. Very established brand names – LYRA (Germany) dates from 1806, and Dixon (USA) from 1795. FILA itself is a relative newcomer, established in 1920.

The Dixon Ticonderoga seems to be the model for the others. It looks just like predecessor versions, minus the “U.S.A.”

The FILA Temagraph is an established brand, but it has been redesigned to resemble the Ticonderoga. The version with an eraser is pretty much a Ticonderoga clone. The one without eraser has an interesting metal cap, with the grade in large letters. It carries on the Ticonderoga ferrule look in an alternate form.

The newest of the bunch is the LYRA Temagraph. The cap has a splash of colour, and is part of a scheme used by other LYRA pencils such as the Robinson. Though the box says the pencil is made in China, the pencil itself is stamped “Germany”.

Dixon Ticonderoga, Fila Temagraph, Lyra Temagraph

Though they look roughly alike, the pencils seem to have different cores.

Are there others in this series? Do you like what FILA has achieved with this pencil line?

Update: November 18, 2010 There is indeed at least one more! Please see AMOS DIXON Ticonderoga at Bleistift.

Lyra Colorstripe pencils

8 comments

Lyra Colorstripe pencils

As well as the Staedtler WOPEX, the 2009 Paperworld show saw another innovative pencil announced – the Lyra Colorstripe.

Lyra Colorstripe pencils

This slightly oversized triangular colour pencil has a rounded rectangular core exposed on one side! The “stripe” (coated to preserve the pencil and your hands) is visible along the length of the pencil.

Lyra Colorstripe pencils

The Colorstripe’s designer, Formidable, has won several high level awards for the product.

Lyra Colorstripe pencils

About one year after the announcement, the product seems to be available in sets of eight and sixteen, as well as singles, in Europe, North America, and Asia. I would like to thank Gunther from Lexikaliker for kindly sending me this set of eight.

The pencils are visually amazing. They are triangular, weighing about 6.8 to 8.5g depending on the core colour – quite a variation.

Lyra Colorstripe pencils

The black dyed wood is marked with silver lettering on one side with the bar code, EAN number, “Germany”, CE symbol, a model number depending on the pencil’s colour, and “COLORSTRIPE LYRA”. A bit busy, but I think the silver looks very nice on the black wood.

Lyra Colorstripe pencils

On Strathmore Bristol 300 Series 260g/m2 vellum, the tones seems quite satisfying.

With black-dyed wood, a triangular shape, and having a cross section around 8mm, I was wondering about sharpening. Fortunately, Lyra provided a sharpener meant for this diameter. Thanks to an informative post at Bleistift, I recognize the “E” with crown symbol on the sharpener, indicating an Eisen product.

There were no problems, and the pencil sharpened easily.

Lyra Colorstripe pencils

Well, there was one problem. When I started to use the pencil, it seems the lead core had been dislodged and unattached itself from the pencil. This is with the gold pencil. I haven’t had any issues with the other colours.

Has anyone out there had this problem? I hope the issue was just with this individual pencil.

Lyra Colorstripe pencils

See also: Lyra Colorstripe

240mm triangular pencils

2 comments

240mm triangular pencils

The standardization of the pencil slat during the 19th century allowed for the pencil industry’s mechanization and automation. While benefitting the industry and consumers, standardization also meant that almost all pencils have become just about the same in dimensions, with the length usually being about 175mm.

240mm triangular pencils

A rare exception is the Lyra Orlow Cellugraph 1174, a gigantic triangular pencil, 240mm long with a 12mm cross-section.

It is marketed as an all-surface pencil, and is mainly used by roofers, plumbers, and tinsmiths.

The Cellugraph is even more unusual, being made of Eastern White Pine, a less common pencil species.

The pencil is marked “Germany”, and Lyra has told me this means the pencil is not made in Germany, but rather China or Indonesia. (Lyra pencils that are made in Germany are explicitly marked “Made in Germany”.)

240mm triangular pencils

From Deskstore in Sweden (presumably not the manufacturer) is a black-dyed pencil of the same dimensions, though a different finish.

The Deskstore pencil’s lead seems to be perhaps more writing-oriented (as would be expected) with a softer lead.

The range of pencils in the market continues to amaze!

240mm triangular pencils

240mm triangular pencils

My thanks to Gunther of Lexikaliker, Woodchuck of Timberlines, and the Lyra Export Department, who all assisted with research and fact-checking for this brief article. As well, my thanks to Gunther for facilitating the purchase of the Cellugraph pencil.

Contrast

7 comments

The white Colorstripe in black wood, and the black and white double ended Super Ferby Duo. Both from Lyra.

Black and white pencils

Black and white pencils

Black and white pencils

Pencils at Lexikaliker

4 comments

Pencils at Lexikaliker

Even though there have been few updates here this month, Lexikaliker has more than picked up the challenge of discussing pencils! (With much better photography!)

Some recent pencil-related posts:

Spitzer spitzen (2)

The Tombow long point sharpener, with some excellent photos documenting how this sharpener works.

Graphit statt Teer

The Eyeball Cigarette pencil. An outstanding photo.

Here is the Google translation of the first sentence:

As a non-smoker Bleischreiber of blackness, I do not my lungs, but a lot of paper.

Here is my translation:

As a non-smoking lead pencil user, I don’t like to blacken my lungs, but I do like to blacken paper.

Any better?

Herlitz Wirtestift

The Herlitz black and grey waiter’s pencil. Who knew waiters had their own pencils?

LYRA Gärtnerstift

The Lyra Garden Pen (a pencil). Gardening is just about at the end of season here in Canada, but this post will live on!