Sponsor Shout-Out: Pencils.com and the Blackwing 602 Legacy Edition


This pencil fetish, I don’t get it … is this some designer/artist thing or are those pencils somehow so special that a normal dude writing a shopping list or doodling while on the phone profits from them?


I’m sure it’s a very nice pencil that I would happily snag if someone let me borrow it. Then I’d realize they cost almost two bucks a pop and I’d feel a little guilty.

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Really? Pencils? Get on your penny-farthing and get out of here.

Consider how the thickness of the lettering changes abruptly in the middle of the word “Supplies”. Now, if you’d used the magnificent mechanical Kuru Toga with built-in clutch mechanism, uniformity would be easy to maintain…


I’m with FFabian: what’s the big deal? What makes these pencils worth almost two-dollars a piece? What makes them better than your classic Ticonderoga or even a Faber-Castel? Just the fancy ferule and eraser shape?

If I spent $23 on a box of pencils, I would have to EAT it.

But I do get it. They look pretty rad.

Mark’s an artist. It’s different for artists. The right pencil can make a HELL of a lot of difference.


I heard the Haunted Mansion is totally made out of these.


That’s a far more useful “shout-out”. Never heard of it before. Will buy.

It’s the “I began writing to far down on the page”-look that notes everywhere used to sport.

I’m not a student of Freud, but I’m almost certain he investigated the relationship between innate masculinity and the perceived rigidity of pencils. Personally, I get really hot and bothered when I see someone run their fingers up and down a firm pencil. It’s a turn on.

Give me a cheapo Number 2 Yellow and I’m a drawing demon. After all, it’s not the pencil that makeths the artist, it’s the artist that makeths the artist…right? The tool doesn’t ultimately matter, unless there’s some sort of fetish (Freudian perhaps?) involved.

In art school one hears endlessly about line quality. It is what separates a good drawing from a great one. These pencils are like using a Martin guitar. You think you get the same results from a dime store guitar shaped box? No.

It is about the quality of the mixture used to produce the lead. The Blackwing or other better pencils glide across the paper in a way that just feels good and leaves behind a line that has expression just like you intended.

I don’t draw much anymore. Loved these things when I did.


It all depends on preference and what you want to do. I’m actually an ink girl. I love my rapid-o-graphs even though I know they may have troubles… I just love them.

For pencils I tend to use mechanical, the kind with a thick lead you can sharpen yourself and load with different leads for different effects.

But… that’s just me. I can see why some one might just like these, the quality of the line, the feel, etc. I’ve never used one before, and like I said… I love my ink. But I can totally see why some one would spend more than 20 dollars on pencils they like using.

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What, you don’t want to pay $200 for a single pencil?

Also sharpened after ‘SPONSORING’.

I’m sure using these pencils is also similar to driving a $175,000 Maserati.
But such lofty comparisons fail to address the specific, relatively high-priced nature of this product.

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Like the Maserati, it’s a high-end version of something that’s also available in midrange and low-end versions. The low-end does the job perfectly well but isn’t as pleasant. The midrange has a nicer ride and handles better – not enough better that it makes any practical difference, but enough better that you can notice it if you care about such things. If you’re going to push the limits, or if you’re exceptionally sensitive, or if you just like the snob appeal, the high end does take it that much further.

It’s worth what it’s worth to the people who buy it, by definition. If it isn’t worth that much to you, it isn’t the one you want to buy. I don’t want a Maserati either, certainly not at full price and probably not even if I got it at lower price; what it’s designed and tuned for simply isn’t what I need.

… And realistically, given how long a pencil lasts (especially when you aren’t writing with it every school day), a buck or three really ain’t that much. Most of us aren’t going to use them fast enough for the price difference over a lifetime to actually make any noticeable difference.

Same reason a $100 adoption fee for a pet isn’t as meaningful as it may sound – it’s a tiny fraction of what the pet’s going to cost you over the course of its life. (Many shelters charge an adoption fee simply to hammer home that folks shouldn’t adopt unless they are willing to make that long-term commitment.)

Read my second and third paragraph, then.

Van Gogh

Egon Schiele

Nancy Rubins