Deli


Clam clips 14

Today I want to show you a type of clip that I use often and that’s very practical. Like the Ohto (officially OHTO) super clip and the corner clips, this type of clip is not very popular and this time I’m not even sure what to call this clip – there are so many different names for this type of clip. A few of the common names are: clam clip, supaclip, power clip, gachuck and nalclip.

The slot loading version

The slot loading version and an Altoids tin with clips

Instructions from Yoyo's ex-power clipper

Instructions
(© Yoyo)

 

Function [1]This is gone be complicated, it’s probably easier if you just look at the pictures.

We are basically talking about a foldback clip (also called foldover clip or binder clip – here in the UK often called a bulldog clip) without the wire handle. This makes the whole clip quite a bit smaller as you leave out the two handles to open the clip which also means that the clip doesn’t need the small loops necessary for the handles. The disadvantage: you can’t easily open the clip any more when you want to clip it into paper, unless you have a clipper/dispenser, the device necessary to clip these clam clips onto the paper. Removing these clips is generally possible by pulling the clip off, most dispensers have a lip at the base to make pulling clips off easier. Even though you can remove them easily enough they clip the paper well enough so that the clip won’t come off by itself.

 

supaclipHistory

Ohto calls their version of this device Gachuck …because of the sound the dispenser makes when clipping paper together. I think in their version of the story the Gachuck’s inventor, a Mr. Sato, tried to approach several companies, but none were interested in this clipping system, until in 1980 he approached OHTO, back then still called AUTO, which then took on this product. Other companies have registered their names for these clips, too. Rapesco’s Supaclip even came with the tag line “The Original”.

 

 

Different versions

Clips from different manufacturers

Clips from different manufacturers

There are many different versions of the clipper/dispenser and of the clips – made by many different manufacturers. I know of four different types of clippers and have three of the four different types. You can find each of these different types of clippers from different manufacturers and in different sizes. Clips are available in different widths as well as with different thickness to handle more sheets if needed.

Most clippers will only handle one size of clips, but will usually be able to handle clips made from different material. Most clips are made from stainless steel, but there are also plastic clips and clips made from a paper and polypropylene mix.

– Slot loading version

clips and clippers

You can see that the blue clipper as been fixed with tape. This type of clipper will usually get damaged when trying to remove a stuck clip.

The most common version these days seems to be the slot loading version [2]This is just my name for this type. If you know what this and other versions are officially called, please let me know.. You load the clips by feeding them into the slot at the back of the clipper. The slider, used to dispense the clips, is connected to a spring. It will automatically slide back after dispensing a clip, so you can use it again immediately. You will have to hold the clipper front down to get the next clip to slide to the front of the dispensing mechanism as clips will slide around in the dispenser, especially if the dispenser is nearly empty. The biggest disadvantage of the slot loading version: if a clip gets stuck you usually can’t remove it without inadvertently breaking the plastic off that prevents clips in the dispenser from falling out.

 

 – Spring loaded version

This is my favourite version, unfortunately this version seems to be pretty hard to find these days. The advantage over the common slot loading version: the slider will slide back after use and will stop just after the next clip to be dispensed.

The spring loaded version and some plastic clips

The spring loaded version and some plastic clips

This means you can keep using the machine without having to turn it front down to get the next clip to the front. This is achieved using a spring mechanism similar to the one you will find in some good staplers [3]My Leitz stapler has a very similar mechanism. The disadvantage: you need to open the clipper, similar to a stapler, to reload it. This takes slightly longer than reloading the slot loading version.

The spring loaded version, open

The spring loaded version, open

– Springless version

This version doesn’t have any spring. This means that additionally to holding the clipper front down, to get the clip in the right position to be dispensed, you also need to use your thumb to move the slider to the back, to be in the right position to dispense the clip.

The springless version next to an Altoids tin I use to store clips

The springless version next to an Altoids tin I use to store clips

This is the least comfortable to use version, but fixing any stuck clips is much easier compared to the spring loaded version. It can usually be done without damaging the clipper.

The springless version, open

The springless version, open

– Cartridge fed version

I don’t own a cartridge fed version, but as the name suggests you load the clipper by inserting a cartridge with clips. You can see a photo of this version on Ohto’s web site.

 

Usage

I like these clam clips a lot. I often use them to temporarily clip sheets of paper together that will get properly stapled at a later stage. If you have a dispenser at hand these clam clips are faster to use and more convenient that foldback clips.

Most of my clippers and clips were bought in Shanghai were a clipper or a pack of clips usually costs around 5-10 RMB (~80c – $1.50; ~50p – £1; 60c – €1). They are sold under the following brands: Bona, Comix and Deli. I bought the springless clipper many years ago from Schreibwaren Jäcklein in Volkach. It’s from Yoyo, distributed my Metzger & Mendle [4]I’ve been meaning to reciew their inks for a few years now. I should definitely try to do that soon.. I think I paid just above €5 (~$7; £4) for it. Replacement clips were just above €3 (~$4). Replacement clips bought in the UK are similarly priced.

Has anyone seen the spring loaded version of the clipper? I’d like to get another one [5]The one in the pictures actually belongs to my wife, but I’ve used it almost exclusively for the last few years. – they are great and the one I’m using has never had any problems with clogging up, unlike the slot loading clippers I’ve used.

A clip in use

A clip in use

 


No proper dates this time as I’ve bought these items over many years. The exchange rates given in the text are also only a rough guideline, as I just want to illustrate what you can expect to pay if you’re after one of these clippers.

References

References
1This is gone be complicated, it’s probably easier if you just look at the pictures.
2This is just my name for this type. If you know what this and other versions are officially called, please let me know.
3My Leitz stapler has a very similar mechanism
4I’ve been meaning to reciew their inks for a few years now. I should definitely try to do that soon.
5The one in the pictures actually belongs to my wife, but I’ve used it almost exclusively for the last few years.

How to sharpen a Wopex 10

After Pencil Revolution’s Wopex post and the following discussion on how to sharpen a Wopex: a photo of a Deli 0668 sharpened Wopex.

Deli sharpened Wopex

Typical pattern created when sharpening a Wopex with a cylindrical sharpener. Click to enlarge.

For many months now I have hardly ever sharpened my Wopeces with anything other than a Deli 0668. For that purpose I have one Deli 0668 at home and one in the office. The 0668’s angle of 20° is more suitable for the Wopex than the more acute angle of ~17°-18° the Deli 0635 will produce.

One warning though, the hardness of the Wopex can make the auto-stop fail. If you notice that the sharpener doesn’t stop, release the pencil holder (back to it’s original position) to avoid more of the pencil being fed further towards the burr cylinder. To finish the sharpening process just keep turning the handle until there is no more resistance .


Deli pencil sharpener 0668 14

When you visit a university in Shanghai you will usually find at least two types of shops nearby: Snack shops (lots of them) and stationery shops. I have not yet seen another city where this phenomenon is as obvious as in Shanghai. The stationery shops can be split into two groups: stationery shops with functional stationery and stationery shops that sell girly stationery as well as other things like make-up, charms, etc – but you can also find shops that are somewhere in-between these two groups.

After my good experience with another Deli sharpener I could not resist and bought this TLR shaped sharpener, the Deli 0668, in December 2010 when I saw it in it in Shanghai – in a stationery shops outside a university. Deli’s headquarters are near Shanghai, so I it is not surprising that this sharpener was inspired by a Shanghainese-made Seagull TLR [1]Seagull TLRs were basically Rolleiflex copies. Outside China Quelle rebranded Seagull TLRs and distributed them as Revue cameras (40 years ago). There are still companies out there that distribute … Continue reading.

The 0668's single rotary blade cylinder

I paid about ¥ 30 (£ 2.80, € 3.30, $ 4.50) for this sharpener, a bit more than what I paid for the Deli 0635. You can get this sharpener cheaper if you look around or if you buy online, e.g. from Taobao. Outside China you can get this sharpener from Kikkerland for $15 (£ 9.30, € 10.80) or from Urban Outfitters for £ 15 ($ 24.20 , € 17.50) [2]Urban Outfitters buy it from Kikkerland and in the end after shipping it over, everyone adding some profit and after adding tax, it is more than five times as expensive than what I paid in a little … Continue reading. It is currently on offer and can be bought for £ 8 online and in the Urban Outfitter shops .

The 0668 has a single rotary blade cylinder, similar to the one in the 0635. There is also a removable tray for the shavings. The clamps that hold the pencil during sharpening have a rubber surface so they won’t damage the pencil’s surface. Additionally, there is an automatic stop mechanism that will prevent you from over-sharpening a pencil. The main difference between the two Deli sharpeners is that the 0668 produces a shorter (and blunter) point. It also features a point adjuster switch similar to the one seen in the Carl Bungu Ryodo BR-05 pencil sharpener, reviewed at pencil talk and in the Dahle 133 / M+R 0981, reviewed at Lexikaliker. The blunt setting at the extreme end will result in a “point” diameter of about 2mm is only suitable for colour pencils with a wide core. Normal graphite pencils do not have a wide enough core for this setting.

 

On the left a Faber-Castell 1117 sharpened with the Deli 0668 (sharp setting), in the middle a Faber-Castell 1117 and a Mitsubishi Arterase Color 0668 sharpened with the Deli 0668 (blunt setting), on the right a Faber-Castell 1117 sharpened with the Deli 0635

Conclusion: A great sharpener for a great price. I will not use the blunt setting and, to be honest, I do prefer the longer point I get from the Deli 0635 much more. It is nevertheless a sharpener I will enjoy using. It is currently in my office where I use it for all kinds of wooden pencils, but not for pencils that use difficult to sharpen material, like the Wopex, as my experience with the Deli 0635 has shown that the Deli’s automatic stop mechanism does not work with these pencils and that the harder material seems to be detrimental to the blade cylinder.

 

A Faber-Castell 1117 sharpened using the sharp setting and a Uni Mitsubishi Arterase Color Vermilion sharpened using the blunt setting.


The pencils used in this blog post are Faber-Castell’s 1117 B and Uni Mitsubishi’s Arterase Color Vermilion 310. The 1117 feels like an unpainted pencil. It is not really painted but features a water-based varnish. It also has a breakage-resistant lead and an eraser. It does performs well for a budget pencil. It is made in Germany and sells for around € 0.30 each (~42¢, ~25p). You can find a review of the Faber-Castell 1117 at pencil talk. The Uni Mitsubishi’s Arterase Color Vermilion 310 is made in Japan. I do not have more information about this pencil, but you can find a review at Lexikaliker and at pencil talk. I would like to thank Lexikaliker for the Arterase Color pencil used in this blog post.

Prices: December 2010

Exchange rates: March 2011

The Deli in Urban Outfitters (Manchester)

References

References
1Seagull TLRs were basically Rolleiflex copies. Outside China Quelle rebranded Seagull TLRs and distributed them as Revue cameras (40 years ago). There are still companies out there that distribute Seagull cameras outside China, one of the most famous ones is Lomography. Another interesting point: Whoever designed this sharpener changed the markings compared to the real camera, from f/3.5 to f/1.5
2Urban Outfitters buy it from Kikkerland and in the end after shipping it over, everyone adding some profit and after adding tax, it is more than five times as expensive than what I paid in a little shop that wasn’t cheap in the first place.

Deli pencil sharpener 0635 9

If you ever go to Shanghai you should visit FuZhou Road. This road is famous for its book stores (including the Shanghai Foreign Language Bookstore), but you will also find many stationery shops there. After seeing the sheer number of different stationery shops, focussing mainly on calenders, note books, diaries, tools used for Chinese calligraphy (like brushes, paper, inkstones) and stationery, you might be disappointed when you actually want to buy stationery: the choice is smaller than expected because many of the shops sell exactly the same items. Other places in Shanghai that sell stationery are big supermarkets (Carrefour, E-mart) or small stationery shops you can normally find near universities.

Keyroad, a relatively new shop on FuZhou Road, is offering items quite different to those offered in the more old-fashioned stationery shops nearby. Targeting Japanophile students, only about half of the space is used for stationery, the other half is used for things like mugs, gloves, toys, etc. Most of these other items are for girls, quite expensive, cute and conjure up associations with Japan, Korea or Taiwan.

There is even a prism sharpener for oil and wax based pencils

The selection of sharpeners was not overwhelming, with the focus on cute looking sharpeners, but to my delight I found a rotary sharpener for only ¥ 25 (£ 2.40, € 2.70, $ 3.70). It is model 0635 from Deli, a stationery manufacturer established in 1988 and employing more than 2000 staff. The sharpener has one burr cylinder and even includes a spring-driven holder for the pencil. There is no desk clamp and no regulator for sharpness or point, but I do not think anybody would mind at this price.

Faber-Castell Bonanza 1320 B

The waste container even includes a prism sharpener in case you need to sharpen oil or wax based pencils as they are not suitable for rotary sharpeners. The manual of the sharpener is in Chinese and English, but the English is rather poor and difficult to understand.

The 0635 has one burr cylinder

Performance:

Performance-wise the Deli 0635 is excellent. The point is very long, even longer than one from a KUM Automatic Long Point. This is a problem for pencils with very soft graphite leads, for colour pencils or for pencil users who use a lot of pressure when writing or drawing, as the point might brake easily. I have not yet had any problems with the point of graphite leads braking, but I stopped using the Deli 0635 with colour pencils. Even the ones with harder leads, like the Mitsubishi Vermilion and Prussian Blue will brake easily when writing if you are not very careful.

Conclusion:

This is an excellent sharpener at such a low price. As it is a cylindrical cutter it should last quite a while without getting blunt. More expensive sharpeners have a desk clamp and let you adjust whether you want a long or short point, but if you like a sharp point and do not want to clamp your sharpener (I assume most people don’t) the Deli 0635 offers fantastic value for money.

Point comparison (l-r): M+R grenade, Eisen 402, KUM Automatic Long Point, Deli 0635

Exchange rates: February 2010