How to Choose a Mechanical Pencil?


How to Choose a Mechanical Pencil?
How to Choose a Mechanical Pencil?

If you haven’t tried drawing with a mechanical pencil yet and you enjoy producing detailed images in pencil. Then you should consider drawing with one. The real beauty of mechanical pencils if their ability to produce delicate, crisp, highly detailed drawings in graphite.

A Guide to Improve Your Drawing

How to Choose a Mechanical Pencil? Mechanical pencils are great for creating extremely accurate drawings. Mechanical drafting pencils are also suited to the rendering of different styles of work. However, there are several essential factors you will need to make before you go ahead and purchase:

  • Mechanical Pencils Lead Sizes
  • Mechanical Pencil vs. Wooden Pencils
  • Benefits of Drawing with a Mechanical Pencil
  • Make Sure Your Mechanical Pencil is Comfortable
  • Check the Balance of the Pencil
  • Benefits of Drawing with a Particular Brand

One of the main reasons people draw with a mechanical pencil is the quality of line you can produce with them. You will notice that you can create exceptional quality and extremely detailed drawing when using a mechanical pencil.

In this post, we will detail some of the main features you will need to understand.

Related Posts:

Mechanical Pencils Lead Sizes

Mechanical pencil leads come in many different sizes, each with its unique characteristics. Mechanical pencils are excellent for sketching with and creating linear sketches.

A 1-millimeter lead is excellent for applying and subtle details like human hair on a portrait. The ticker leads can be more than 5 millimeters wide. These thicker leads can make many separate line widths. Depending on how sharp they are,  they are usually better for broad strokes.

Mechanical Pencil vs. Wooden Pencils

One advantage of drawing with a mechanical pencil is there ability to create dark lines consistently. This is without sharpening and varying the pressure you apply on the pencil.

Drawing with a standard wooden pencil is that the artist will be able to vary the pressure applied with the pencil. This allows the artists to graduate the shading in the drawing with more control. To read more about the best drawing and sketching pencils, please read my post, Best Pencils for Drawing, Shading and Sketching.

So we can conclude that the standard wooden pencil will provide you with more control when shading a drawing. A mechanical pencil, however, is more comfortable to draw with when producing finely detailed drawings.

Benefits of Drawing with a Mechanical Pencil

As well as their ability to produce highly detailed line drawings. Are searching for a reason to use a mechanical pencil. Here are several reasons why you should consider using a mechanical drafting pencil.

1. They Stay Sharp. A convenient but straightforward reason is that they don’t require sharpening, which cuts down on breakage and wastage over time when using wooden pencils.

2. Eraser Included as Standard. I don’t think I have ever come across a mechanical pencil which didn’t come equipped with a convenient eraser.

3. Ergonomic Design over Style. Mechanical pencils are designed with graphic artists in mind. The balance and grip of a good quality drafting pencil will ensure the process of drawing becomes a lot easier.

4. Excellent Sketching Pencils.  The mechanical pencil which produces fine lines and produces a wide variety of marks in your drawings.

Make Sure Your Mechanical Pencil is Comfortable  

Some of the more expensive styles of drafting pencil will on first impressions look incredibly modern and stylish.

However, it is essential to hold and feel the pencil before you begin to draw. This enables you to get a sense of how comfortable the pencil is. Plus it will be to draw with over an extended period.

Check the surface of the pencil to check it is comfortable to hold when drawing. Does it have an irregular or depressed surface which makes a drawing difficult?

Does the pencil have a grip which will make drawing easier?

Check the Balance of the Pencil

One sure way to find out that a potential pencil is worth using is the balance of the pencil. Ideally, the balance of the pencil should with either in the middle or toward the drawing tips of the pencil.

Think carefully about the distribution of the weight distribution of the pencil. This should be towards the tip of the pencil as this will make it more comfortable to draw with. Moreover, therefore, much more natural to draw with.

If the balance is uneven and top substantial. Drawing will be awkward, especially over long periods when producing detailed drawings.

Benefits of Drawing with a Particular Brand

Pentel Graphgear 1000

This is one of the top mechanical pencils to draw with. It is a favorite among many graphic artists who know and draw with mechanical drafting pencils. The surface of the pencil is comfortable to grip and draw with over extended periods.

How to Choose a Mechanical Pencil?
How to Choose a Mechanical Pencil?
Features of the Pentel Graphicgear 1000
Comfortable GripThe surface of the pencil is easy to grasp and draw with an over an extended duration of time.
Retractable Pocket ClipA retractable pocket clip which retracts into the covering of the pencil.  I result in a smooth transition across the entire surface of the pencil when drawing.
No SlippageReduced slippage results in a more comfortable drawing experience.
Retractable SleeveRetractable lead, which results in less breakage when placed in storage.
Centrally BalancedCentrally balanced, which means the pencil is comfortable to hold further down the sleeve.

One of the critical features of the pencil is the retractable pocket clip. Pocket clips are especially painful to draw with over an extended period as they tend to push into the skin of the person who is holding the pencil. As moves in their hand.

Pocket clip retracts into the surface of the pencil. This makes creating a detailed drawing over an extended period more comfortable. Click here to read the latest reviews on Amazon.

Pentel Graphgear 500 Drafting Pencil

GraphGear 500 How to Choose a Mechanical Pencil
GraphGear 500 How to Choose a Mechanical Pencil

This pencil comes with secured fixed sleave, which means it doesn’t move when you try to draw with it. It is a well balanced mechanical pencil which is comfortable to draw with. Click here for further information.

Key Attributes of the Pentel Graphgear 500
Fixed SleeveWhich reduces movement of the lead graphite when you are drawing with this Pencil
O.5 Lead and Hardness IndicatorEasy the identify and switch between the different grades of lead.
Well balanced pencilThe centrally balanced pencil which is easy to draw with over time.

The pencil is manufactured with a plastic body. Its also equipped with a 0.5 lead diameter.  The pencil also comes outfitted with a leading indicator. The lead indicator will enable you to choose between the many 0.5 diameter graphite lead HB, B, H, and F.

Pentel P200 Drafting Pencil

Pentel again produces this pencil. The Pental P200 is equipped with a 0.5 diameter lead which is encased in a plastic sleeve. It comes in a  smooth and ergonomic designed case, which is comfortable to grip. 

This is again a centrally balanced pencil which suggests the pencil can be held further up the sleeve.

This pencil is light and comfortable to hold over an extended period, which makes it ideal for the production of detailed drawings and illustrations. Click to check the latest prices.

Key Features of the P200 Drafting Pencil
LeadOutfitted with a standard 0.5 graphite lead.
Ergonomic DesignComfortable to hold and draw with over extended periods.
WeightLight, comfortable, and well-balanced pencil.

Pentel Graph 600 Drafting Pencil

Graph600 How to Choose a Mechanical Pencil
Graph600 How to Choose a Mechanical Pencil

Again as you would expect from Pentel, this is a beautiful and well design drafting pencil. It is available to buy in a range of different colors.

The  Graph Gear 600 is produced with a hexagonal aluminum barrel. It also features a rippled metal grip, which is, easy to grip and makes the experience of the drawing with the pencil much more pleasant.

The elegant chrome grip also decreases the occurrence of slippage and pain when drawing over extended periods. Click here to read the latest reviews.

Key Aspects of the Pentel Graph 600 Drafting Pencil
DesignSleek design and hexagonal barrel and elegant chrome grip.
Lead0.5 Graphite
Ergonomic DesignRippled Ergonomic Grip for increased control.

Conclusion

I hope you have enjoyed reading this post and that you have found it informative and rewarding.  Please feel free to leave a comment in the comments box below.

To read my latest posts please visit improvedrawing.com

Ian

Ian Walsh is the creator and author of improvedrawing.com and an Art teacher based in Merseyside in the United Kingdom. He holds a BA in Fine Art and a PGCE in teaching Art and Design. He has been teaching Art for over 24 Years in different parts of the UK. When not teaching Ian spending his time developing this website and creating content for the improvedrawing channel.

Recent Posts

How to Choose a Mechanical Pencil?