Delitape

A few years ago M&G, a brand I have previously only seen in Shanghai, started to make its appearance in some local shops. It is still pretty uncommon to see M&G pens here in the UK, at least with M&G being mentioned on the pen or packaging, but I wouldn’t be surprised if some no name pens you can buy here are actually are from M&G.

Deli, another Chinese brand, has already entered the West as on OEM for some famous brands like Faber-Castell and Koh-I-Noor. I have previously looked at Deli’s sharpeners: the 0620 might be the original classroom friendly sharpener, the 0668 is great if you don’t want your sharpener to produce too acute a point and don’t mind a quirky look and the 0635 is a personal favourite of mine.

Now Deli also seems to become more easy to get hold of in the West, this time for another product that is not directly linked to pencils. This time this is thanks to Amazon. When I needed some Sellotape (a brand name that is used as a generic term in the UK, the US equivalent is Scotch tape and the German equivalent is Tesa) I thought I give Amazon’s own brand a try. Amazon Basics tape was similarly priced to other brands, but I was keen on trying out a taped I hadn’t tried before – there might be some good stuff out there I missed so far.

I haven’t used used much yet, it just arrived this week, but so far I am quite happy with this tape.


Coming soon to a Bleistift blog near you:


Puma’s Kakikata pencils.


Kaco and Stálogy 2

If you follow my YouTube channel you might have seen my video about Kaco. Two minutes into this video I show the KacoGreen Multipen.

Since it’s made in Japan [1]Kaco is from China I assumed it was bought in and suspected that this ‘shape’ of multipen is also being used by other brands.

I have now found another pen that is presumably from the same OEM: The Stálogy multipen. The clip looks different and I assume the refills are different. The KacoGreen refills are stamped “Kaco”, so I assume Kaco is using their own refills in a bought-in body.

📚Stalogy 3+1多功能低黏度油性墨水防滑筆(0.5mm自動筆+3色) https://goo.gl/m2U23p 日本製的 Stalogy 的3+1多功能筆,集合三色筆芯以及自動鉛筆的功能於一身,原裝的三色筆芯為低黏度的油性墨水,可防止書寫時劃得太快,因此能卻完美的手感。而特殊的橡膠筆桿則經過抗菌處理且不滑手,握起來比一般塑膠材質更穩。 哎喔生活雜良 http://ift.tt/2ljZGPp http://ift.tt/2kArHOm February 16, 2017 at 12:
This is an embedded Flickr image. Click to go to this image on Flickr.

OEM products are fairly common in the stationery industry. For sharpeners OEM products are used by many brands. When it comes to OEM fountain pens I noticed some with similar looks but massively different quality.

References

References
1Kaco is from China

Cleo Skribent Messograf

A blast from the past: Three years Cult Pens provided pencils for Bleistift’s giveaway for the first ever Mechanical Pencil Day. One of these was the Messograf, a very special mechanical pencil I showed at the time, but never presented in its own blog post – something I want to rectify today.

You can find out more about Cleo Skribent, the company behind the Messograf, their history, the Messograf itself and the ever-so-cool built-in Vernier caliper in the video below.

I hope you enjoyed the video.

Mechanical Pencil Day Prizes, Messograf on the right

The giveaway was a great opportunity for me to try out new pencils I hadn’t used before, before sending them on to the winners.


Graphene pencil

Coming soon: a look at an Italian-made pen [1]available as lead holder, mechanical pencil and fountain pen, designed 20 years ago and now 3d printed using graphene. I got the lead holder and the mechanical pencil on loan from Write Here and will have a closer look in the next week or so.

My understanding of chemistry is very limited. With graphene not being very think (one layer of atoms) I am not sure how something three-dimensional can be graphene without turning into graphite. Maybe it is a flat ‘two-dimensional’ layer rolled up. I wonder whether this requires very special 3d printers so that the graphene layers don’t melt together into a lump of graphite. In any case the result is a very special pen.

As expected the pens are very light, but as seen in the mechanical pencil comparison above there are lighter mechanical pencils available.

References

References
1available as lead holder, mechanical pencil and fountain pen

Faber-Castell’s Goldfaber pencil set 2

Helping Hands

A few weeks ago David from Helping Hands Craft contacted me. He asked me if I want to review any of their products. I wasn’t aware of their shop before he contact me but was quite impressed by their selection of Faber-Castell products. As a review item I picked the Goldfaber pencil set for £4.50. Looking through their Faber-Castell items I was positively surprised to see other unusual items, for example

The Goldfaber pencil set

Back to the less exotic Faber-Castell item I want to write about today: The Goldfaber set contains

  • 4 Goldfaber HB pencils,
  • a sharpener (presumably from Eisen [1]an underrated sharpener brand I have been occasionally mentioning over the last twelve years),
  • and the big version of my favourite eraser [2]find out more in this 2010 blog post.

The Goldfaber pencils are made in Indonesia, just like the Columbus, its Irish cousin, and the Bonanza, its Arabic [3]The Bonanza used to be more widely available, but seems to be difficult to get outside the Middle East cousin. The pencil set is marked as being Made in Germany, so I was initially surprised and thought Goldfaber production has moved back to Germany, but when I checked with Faber-Castell they confirmed that this is a mistake and that they will fix this in the future. They have also confirmed that the Goldfaber is made in Indonesia. Unfortunately that’s as far as I got. My further request to get my suspicion regarding the wood being used confirmed was not successful.

Goldfaber 1221

The Goldfaber 1221 pencil is a nice writer. It is HB but writes darker than a Castell 9000 in B. I am not surprised though – I always found the 9000 to be lighter than similar grades in other pencils. Pearson’s Graphite 2015 confirms this, the Goldfaber HB is listed with a darkness of 12, the Castell 9000 B with a darkness of 8 [4]higher value = darker. The wood being used in the Goldfaber is also very good. For the price you pay the quality is excellent, but it can’t compete with high-end pencils from Faber-Castell or other brands. Out of the four pencils from the set one is slightly bent, two could have a better centred lead and all four don’t have a perfect paintjob. These small shortcomings don’t detract from the positive impression left by the dark graphite and the nice wood, especially not at this price [5]Eraser and sharpener are approximately half the value of the £4.50. There was also a faint smell of paint when the Goldfabers were fresh out of the box, something Faber-Castell’s Castell 9000 with its water-based varnish doesn’t suffer from, but the smell disappeared after a while.

Sharpener and eraser

The German-made sharpener, presumably an Eisen 040, does an excellent job, as does my favourite eraser, the Malaysian-made 187120, a dust free / no dust eraser.

A video with an overview

Conclusion

Overall, this is a very nice pencil set, especially if you want a nice eraser and want a small sharpener and don’t need it to be a container sharpener.


Just to spell it out, I have not been paid for this blog post or for any other blog posts.

References

References
1an underrated sharpener brand I have been occasionally mentioning over the last twelve years
2find out more in this 2010 blog post
3The Bonanza used to be more widely available, but seems to be difficult to get outside the Middle East
4higher value = darker
5Eraser and sharpener are approximately half the value of the £4.50