Pencils are one of the most popular types of writing instrument, be it at school or in the office. Professional and amateur artists use them for drawing and sketching, but pencils can really be used for just about anything and by any age group. For perfect writing and drawing results, you not only need high-quality pencils, but also the right accessories. That’s why you will find a large selection of erasers, sharpeners and much more in the STAEDTLER range.
How we make our high-quality STAEDTLER pencils
How is a pencil made? Contrary to the belief that pencil leads are made of lead, the material is not used at all in the production of this popular writing and drawing instrument. So what materials are pencils made of? To make our high-quality STAEDTLER pencils, we use:
The clay acts as a binding agent and gives the lead its shape and strength, while graphite produces the characteristic silvery black color on the page.
The hardness of the pencil varies depending on the ratio of clay to graphite in the lead:
- The more clay in the pencil lead, the harder the pencil.
- The more graphite in the pencil lead, the softer and blacker the final product.
After mixing, we press the materials into the shape of the lead and dry them. As the lead is still very soft and bendy at this point, it has to be baked in the oven at a very high temperature. Finally, the lead is impregnated in a wax bath to make it strong and resistant to shattering.
Once the lead has dried, it is placed in a protective wooden barrel. The blank pencil is then painted in several steps, and finally, sharpened and packaged.
Pencil hardness grades and the differences between them
Pencils are usually divided into the following hardness grades, abbreviated as follows:
- B = Black – soft pencil lead with high graphite content for matt, deep black results when drawing, sketching and shading
- HB = Hard Black – medium-soft pencil lead ideal for writing
- H = Hard – hard pencil lead for technical drawing and cartography
However, there are further differentiations in the hardness grades H and B, which are determined by a number placed in front of the letter. The higher the number in front of the letter, the harder (H) or softer (B) the lead.
The STAEDTLER range includes wood-cased pencils in 20 different degrees of hardness – from hard models (9H - 3H), which are ideal for technical drawing, for example, to very soft models (9B - 3B), which are often used as drawing pencils – and last but not least our classic writing pencils (2B, B, HB, H, 2H).
Practical pencil accessories for optimum writing and drawing results
When writing, drawing or shading with a pencil, the tip becomes blunted by the abrasion. No matter what you use a pencil for – whether for drawing or writing – a sharp lead is always required. That’s why you also need the right sharpener to hand. The quality of the sharpener is crucial when sharpening wood-cased pencils. We offer durable models made of metal or plastic, as well as practical containers for shavings. Our high-quality pencil accessories sharpen your pencils in an instant and help you achieve optimum writing and drawing results. The quality of the sharpener is crucial when it comes to sharpening wood-cased pencils.
Luckily, pencils have always been the easiest writing instrument to correct. And STAEDTLER has the perfect pencil accessory to deal with any slip of the hand or spelling mistake. We offer erasers in different shapes and sizes so you can erase any mistake in an instant. STAEDTLER erasers allow you to achieve perfection!
Ideal writing accessories for school, the office and on the go
Our pencils and accessories category also includes practical mechanical pencils that do not require sharpening. They are as easy to use as ballpoint pens and are ready to use right away. If the lead of a mechanical pencil runs out, you can simply refill it and keep using it. There is no need to sharpen the pencil, so as long as you regularly refill it, you have a pencil that is ready to use at all times – at school, in the office and on the go!