My Collection – Photos and Commentary

Odd Numbers

In an earlier post, I showed that pencil companies have distinctive ways of expressing a 2½ lead hardness.  They also have come up with unusual hardnesses and corresponding lead numbers —

The Templar’s 1-5/8 is “Exclusive with Reliance” —

Theoretically, that would be just a tad harder than the Berol Mirado’s 1½.

In fact, Eagle (the forerunner of Berol) had a 1½ , and also a 3½, back in the 1800’s —

The Eagle card also provides details of an old B/H system that was used for high-quality art and drafting pencils.  They squeezed an FHB between HB and F.

F is not an unusual grade, even for regular pencils, but only Eberhard Faber put it equal to 2-3/8, as far as I know.  According to this Berol Black Warrior, F (literally, F2½) is equal to 2½:

2 responses

  1. Kevin

    The Venus Velvet All Purpose 2 2/3 is equal in line strength to a Eagle Mirado No1…weird. Also, speaking of strange numbers, what about No2A? My Koh-i-Noor Koh-i-Thins are marked 2A. Iwas perhaps wondering if the A stood for Accountant…but that’s probably a long shot.

    April 9, 2012 at 2:03 am

    • I don’t test and compare pencils (I just collect them), but others’ experience shows that lead numbers from different makers don’t mean the same thing. Still, 2 2/3 behaves like a 1? That is odd.
      I have also wondered about the 2A — see my Nostalgia post.

      April 12, 2012 at 4:26 pm

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