how do you sharpen your pencils at the workbench?

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How do you sharpen your pencils at the workbench?

  • electric pencil sharpener

  • manual pencil sharpener

  • the nearest knife

  • I use mechanical pencils only

  • I use pen, just like when I do Sudokus or the NYT crossword puzzle


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neil_w

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Here's a matter of national importance.

I use a knife, just because I can't seem to bring myself to spend money on a proper pencil sharpener, even though I curse myself every time I do it.
 
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Incongruent

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One of the perks of my messiness is that I have a lifetime supply of pencils around the room. This is just the pencil jar where they're supposed to go...

IMG_2163.jpg
 

Incongruent

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Here's a matter of national importance.

I use a knife, just because I can't seem to bring myself to spend money on a proper pencil sharpener, even though I curse myself every time I do it.
I recall that some artists use sanding blocks to shape the tip.

Think of how it'll improve your build quality like that (insert expensive tool you use to build rockets) and how much less it is than that tool, and you might be more motivated get one.
 

dhbarr

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I just use an 0.3mm mechanical.
 

Woody's Workshop

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0.5mm Pentel Forte Mechanical
Used them forever and then some.
But someday I'll have to find a knew kind.
Pentel quit making them at the bigging of this year.
I got 6 left out of 24. Plus some parts.
I got the box for $20.
Nothing that cheap anymore though.
On the occasion I use a regular pencil, I have an electric Xacto sharpener.
Never us a carpenter's pencil, not define enough.
1/8" thick line, cut on the wrong side, and your now 1/4" off.
 
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o1d_dude

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I am a pencil fanatic having started my working life out as a draftsman....

Lead holders, pencils, mechanical pencils, carpenter pencils and sharpeners, crank sharpeners, hand held sharpeners, sanding pad for drafting, spiral drum sharpeners, etc.

Boxes of spare pencils...They are cheap and will come in handy after the Apocalypse.

BTW, crossword puzzles and Sudoko are ALWAYS done in ink...much to chagrin of my earliest co-workers.
 
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Cabernut

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My son has an electric one so I just use his. Easy peasy. Once every few rockets, not often. But if i lose a pencil, I'll raid his stash for a no.2.
 

neil_w

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I didn't think of adding a sander as an option. First rule of internet polls: you'll never anticipate all the possible responses. :)
 

boatgeek

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I am a pencil fanatic having started my working life out as a draftsman....

Lead holders, pencils, mechanical pencils, carpenter pencils and sharpeners, crank sharpeners, hand held sharpeners, sanding pad for drafting, spiral drum sharpeners, etc.

Boxes of spare pencils...They are cheap and will come in handy after the Apocalypse.

BTW, crossword puzzles and Sudoko are ALWAYS done in ink...much to chagrin of my earliest co-workers.
Yeah, but do you have the powered eraser and the eraser shavings brush? :) My coworker has his souvenir brush that is worn down to about three quarters of an inch of bristle at the tip from (as he says) 30 years of mistakes. We still have boxes of drafting leads at the office that will never get used now that everything is on CAD. We hardly even use the plotter anymore--it all goes to PDF.
 

hobie1dog

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Loss of motor skills and lack of muscles in my hands leaves me writing very little. When I start back building rockets, I will just use a mechanical pencil.
 

Nathan

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How do you sharpen your pencils at the workbench
I don't. I take them downstairs to the office and sharpen them.
 

o1d_dude

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Yeah, but do you have the powered eraser and the eraser shavings brush? :) My coworker has his souvenir brush that is worn down to about three quarters of an inch of bristle at the tip from (as he says) 30 years of mistakes. We still have boxes of drafting leads at the office that will never get used now that everything is on CAD. We hardly even use the plotter anymore--it all goes to PDF.
A powered eraser and refills, too. Special ones for the aerial photograph film we worked on. Eraser shields of various sizes, and brushes! My workbench has brushes in every potentially handy locations.

Also did a lot of ink and still have my pen set...unused these many years as I later transferred to another state agency where I eventually entered the information technology field (big iron/glass house/raised floor).
 

rharshberger

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A powered eraser and refills, too. Special ones for the aerial photograph film we worked on. Eraser shields of various sizes, and brushes! My workbench has brushes in every potentially handy locations.

Also did a lot of ink and still have my pen set...unused these many years as I later transferred to another state agency where I eventually entered the information technology field (big iron/glass house/raised floor).
You probably even still have one of the cloth bags with the dust in it (I cant remember what its called anymore, but I have one too). I took drafting classes all 4 years of high school and in college. I still have and love to use my Staedtler mechanical pencils, lead holders. Like Over the Top in my shop I have a Xacto brand crank style sharpener and a holder full of #2 pencils. We even started learning a brand new program when I was in high school called AutoCad....it was barely one step above the sharp sticks we normally used.
 

Kallahan11

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I use pens, why would I make a misteak?
 

markkoelsch

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You probably even still have one of the cloth bags with the dust in it (I cant remember what its called anymore, but I have one too). I took drafting classes all 4 years of high school and in college. I still have and love to use my Staedtler mechanical pencils, lead holders. Like Over the Top in my shop I have a Xacto brand crank style sharpener and a holder full of #2 pencils. We even started learning a brand new program when I was in high school called AutoCad....it was barely one step above the sharp sticks we normally used.
That sounds very familiar. I worked 4 years of mechanical drafting and two years of architectural drafting into high school. Senior year was 1986 using early Autocad. I was much faster then with a pencil and drafting machine. I would really like a good drafting table and machine.

Then again, I am going to start playing with Autocad Fusion soon. The time has come.
 

rharshberger

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That sounds very familiar. I worked 4 years of mechanical drafting and two years of architectural drafting into high school. Senior year was 1986 using early Autocad. I was much faster then with a pencil and drafting machine. I would really like a good drafting table and machine.

Then again, I am going to start playing with Autocad Fusion soon. The time has come.
I was class of '89, we started working with AutoCad about the same time as you did using an Apple with a digitizer pen and pad.
 

dr wogz

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X-atco or pocket knife mostly. I do have a 'school style' sharpener (as Over the Top posted)

I've used a chisel, and once did use a belt sander. I had a co-worker use his radial arm saw regularly.. "its on the bench, why not!" And id the sand paper thing in school, but that was messy//
 

boatgeek

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You probably even still have one of the cloth bags with the dust in it (I cant remember what its called anymore, but I have one too). I took drafting classes all 4 years of high school and in college. I still have and love to use my Staedtler mechanical pencils, lead holders. Like Over the Top in my shop I have a Xacto brand crank style sharpener and a holder full of #2 pencils. We even started learning a brand new program when I was in high school called AutoCad....it was barely one step above the sharp sticks we normally used.
I was too late for those, but my coworkers called them scumbags. Apparently scumbag fights were a common thing. When I came to the office (1997), all new drawings were AutoCAD, but we had occasional projects where it was faster to update the old in pencil than draw new. I never worked on them--didn't have the artistic touch and good lettering needed to do good manual drafting.

In other old tech news, there's a planimeter floating around the office as well. It's a mechanical integrator that looks a lot like a pantograph, gives you area (and on the nice ones, centroid) of areas you trace out with the tip. And this may be very wrong, but I still like the faint ammonia smell of blue line drawings.
 

rharshberger

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I was too late for those, but my coworkers called them scumbags. Apparently scumbag fights were a common thing. When I came to the office (1997), all new drawings were AutoCAD, but we had occasional projects where it was faster to update the old in pencil than draw new. I never worked on them--didn't have the artistic touch and good lettering needed to do good manual drafting.

In other old tech news, there's a planimeter floating around the office as well. It's a mechanical integrator that looks a lot like a pantograph, gives you area (and on the nice ones, centroid) of areas you trace out with the tip. And this may be very wrong, but I still like the faint ammonia smell of blue line drawings.
Never used a planimeter, did lots and lots of hand lettering, and I too remember the smell of blue line drawings, and the fact that India ink was permanent (not that I did much work with nib type pens, but we were required to know how to use them). I still to this day keep wooden pencils in various hardnesses and a sharpener and sanding pad nearby on many projects. A triangular scale works great for lines on rocket airframes too!
 

dr wogz

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Planimeter.. wow, had to go look that one up. never used one of them. Use a pantograph a few times. Had various lettering and object templates, as well as the triangles. I then graduated forma Jacob's rule to the 90° ruler on an arm set-up... And had the electric eraser and shields.. brushes too. Use the old style pens rarely, as 'drafting pens' were then en vogue. I remember how good I was at disassembly & re assembly of these things.. and the e-sonic cleaner. I remember doing eh blue line paper too, and running a sheet thru the machine for the bluest wrapping paper! (and once yelling at a co-worker for not closing the blue line paper bag!! all the edges were exposed!)

I remember making a change to an old drawing, where it was easier to cut the sheet in half, insert a 2" piece, and join up the lines.. razor blades to erase ink? Those twirly sharpeners for lead holder pencils? (Cut cigarette butts / filters fit the 'cleaner' well perfectly!)

We had an old HP 'E' sized pen plotter. loved watching that. We then got an ink-jet plotter, and had to tell HR (nicely) that it wasn't for making posters..
 

Woody's Workshop

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Yeah, but do you have the powered eraser and the eraser shavings brush? :) My coworker has his souvenir brush that is worn down to about three quarters of an inch of bristle at the tip from (as he says) 30 years of mistakes. We still have boxes of drafting leads at the office that will never get used now that everything is on CAD. We hardly even use the plotter anymore--it all goes to PDF.
I'll take all the 0.5 leads off your hands.
 

Kirk G

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Hey! What about rubbing or rolling it on a flat sheet of sandpaper?
I know in the field, my carpenter father would rub a pencil on the sidewalk or on a cement block to "sharpen" it if he should break the lead.
 

TopRamen

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Here's mine. Forgive the hazy pic', there is a cloud of moisture moving through my house, as I am experimenting with making use of the heat generated when I use the dryer for laundry.
fifty cents at a used stuff store, but a real workhorse.
I use mechanicals for drawing, but lately I make marks on things rather than draw them, so my mechanicals are a little too fine for current needs.

Pencil sharpener 2016-12-21 002.jpg
 

dhbarr

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Here's mine. Forgive the hazy pic', there is a cloud of moisture moving through my house, as I am experimenting with making use of the heat generated when I use the dryer for laundry.
Top, I love you man; but this is a serious recipe for mold and/or house fire. I'm presuming it's not gas, at least?

You -could- safely get some of this energy back with a heat exchanger, but dryer temps are fairly low Delta T vs STP.
 
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