It's finally spring, here, but when I open a new box of pencils, it's instantly September and I'm ready to head back to school. This set of graphite artist's pencils have that smell that activates the part of your brain that needs to create.
The Faber-Castell 9000 Graphite Pencil Tin Set contains six pencils of different lead grades: HB, B, 2B, 4B, 6B, and 8B. The lead is bonded to the hexagonal wood casing (so the lead is very break-resistant), and the body is coated in water-based, environmentally friendly varnish. They're all in the signature Faber-Castell dark green with gold-stamped branding and labels.
Faber-Castell have kept a consistent aesthetic in their 112-year legacy. I found an old tin set in an antique shop last year. I don't know how old this set is, but the lovely pencils are nearly identical to the modern ones.
It's safe to say that 100+ years is enough time to become an expert, so it's no surprise that these pencils are excellent. The leads are strong with a lovely degree of difference in lead grades. They write smoothly with just the right amount of feedback, shade beautifully, erase well, and hardly smudge at all, even in the softest grade. The right side of my drawn line is where I tried to smudge them--and I feel I have to tell you that, because it's really difficult to see any smudge. They all held their points quite well, though the softer ones naturally wore down a little more quickly. They're light and the wood smells enchanting.
The Faber-Castell 9000 is available in 16 hardness grades, sold as open stock or in sets of 6, 12, or in a complete set of 16.
These are great artist's tools. Whether you're sketching, drawing, or designing, these are definitely worth a try. They'd also make a lovely gift for an artist. Harder lead grades may perform well for writing, but sketching is where these pencils shine.
(JetPens provided this product at no charge to The Pen Addict for review purposes.)
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