Pencils of All Grades for All Types of Jobs
Thanks to the internet and the overdependence of
communicating via online chat, more and more people are forgetting the values
of handwritten text. It is the same case with designers depending on graphic
tablets for designing artwork. Does this ring the death knell for wooden
pencils? Not at all! No graphic input tools can replicate the visual impact
created by lead pencils. Ask any professional graphic designer worth his
salt... he or she will tell you how much they depend on good drawing pencils to
create their artwork. It becomes easy to understand why the humble pencils are
so popular when one views an artist altering the shape of the pencil tip by
rubbing it on sandpaper to make it flat, or sharpening it with a sharpener to
shave the wood away to reveal the lead and alter the diameter of its tip.
Contrary to popular belief, pencils do not contain lead. They consist of nontoxic
graphite enclosed in a wooden shell.
Poor graphite and sharpener
Have you ever been frustrated, when the tip of the pencil
breaks repeatedly while sharpening it? This typically takes place when you
sharpen it too much or if you use cheap imported pencils that contain low
quality graphite. It might also be due to a faulty sharpener.
Sizes and shapes
Pencils come in all sorts of sizes... the most common one
having a diameter of 8 mm. The diameters of some of the bigger pencils run all
the way up to 10.5 mm. The external wooden housing of the pencils comes in
different shapes such as circular, triangular, and hexagonal. A sharp point is
required to draw fine lines, whereas a blunt tip is necessary for a thick line.
You can also rub opposite sides of the graphite on a sandpaper to form a flat
shaped tip, necessary when creating calligraphic designs.
Understanding the grade of the graphite
Pencils are available in different grades ranging from hard
to soft. The different ranges from hard to soft are 10H, 9H and so on up to H,
where 10H is the hardest, used for drawing fine lines. The spectrum is usually
read from B to H, such as 10B, 9B, HB, 1H, 2H, up to 10H. The further down from
9B to 9H you go, the harder the lead gets. HB is the standard hardness used for
most purposes. The lead of good drawing pencils should glide across the paper
instead of gripping it.