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Thread: Twig pencils

  1. #1
    Member Chip's Avatar
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    Default Twig pencils

    While pruning Russian olives, I admired the red bark and thought they'd make nice pencils. So I ordered long leads from the Faber-Castell website and got some long, fine drills (1.4 mm, 1.6 mm, 2.0 mm). The heartwood is soft and the drill follows it.



    Rambling around our place, I clipped twigs from several species: serviceberry, lilac, redosier dogwood, willow. Once they season, I'll make a batch of pencils for holiday gifts.

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    Default Re: Twig pencils

    As an artist who loves working with graphite, is the sort of gift Id appreciate! And a bunch would look so nice in a desk cup. Really beautiful.

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    Default Re: Twig pencils

    Those are SO cool - what a brilliant idea for a gift. Kudos.

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    Default Re: Twig pencils

    I don't use pencil for my sketches (only if I really need it), but looking at these pencils, I can't help but to drool.
    - Will
    Unique and restored vintage pens: Redeem Pens

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    Default Re: Twig pencils

    Got long leads from the Faber-Castell website. The drills were a bit tougher, but McMaster-Carr has extended length bits in sizes such as 2 mm.

    So far, I've carefully pushed the leads into the holes without any glue. If you break the lead while inserting it, pieces fall out when it's sharpened. I might try a scrim of wood glue on the next batch.

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    Default Re: Twig pencils

    Quote Originally Posted by Chip View Post
    Got long leads from the Faber-Castell website. The drills were a bit tougher, but McMaster-Carr has extended length bits in sizes such as 2 mm.

    So far, I've carefully pushed the leads into the holes without any glue. If you break the lead while inserting it, pieces fall out when it's sharpened. I might try a scrim of wood glue on the next batch.
    Dropping pencils - bad, very bad. I learned this the hard way with very pricey colored pencils

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    Member Chip's Avatar
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    Default Re: Twig pencils

    Made more twig pencils, from different species of shrub.



    Top down: Russian olive, lilac, redosier dogwood, redosier dogwood, and Russian olive.

    Cut some Titebond wood glue with water and brushed it on the leads before putting them in. Rather than using my fingers to push them down, I carefully tapped them down with a small block of wood and didn't break a single one.

    Only two B (soft) leads left, so I'll get on the Faber-Castell site and order more.

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    Lloyd (July 12th, 2021), mizgeorge (July 12th, 2021)

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    Default Re: Twig pencils

    Here's a chart showing the different grades of pencil lead, hard to soft:


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    Lloyd (July 12th, 2021)

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    Default Re: Twig pencils

    Very interesting variant, looks authentic!

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    Default Re: Twig pencils

    Nice! Those things don't grow on trees.... oh...yes they do...

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    Default Re: Twig pencils

    So organic and cool -looking.
    I also enjoy your description on the making process.
    - Will
    Unique and restored vintage pens: Redeem Pens

  15. #12
    Member Chip's Avatar
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    Default Re: Twig pencils

    Guess I wasn't the first to think of it. Checked Etsy, which is awash in twig pencils.

    I could try custom twig pencils, with the buyer specifying the sort of wood and the hardness of the lead.

    But I think I'll just make them for fun and give them away.

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