Tag Archives: eraser

Review: Apsara Non Dust Eraser

These tiny erasers arrive bundled with Apsara pencils along with a sharpener. The NDE measures 35X12x18mm*. It is just small enough that it can disappear in my pocket but is just barely big enough that it’s easily found, so long as my pocket isn’t full of junk. It is white with a blue, green and white sleeve for protection. The sleeve does wear in through use, but it gets a nice patina that I pretty much love. 

The NDE is, as the name implies, a sticky eraser in that it doesn’t make crumbs and what it does make sticks to the eraser. It does exactly what the name implies- no dust and it sticks. As sticky erasers go this is quite firm, quite a bit more firm than the Sakura Foam or the Matumaru I reviewed previously. It does a decent job on smooth paper but on rough paper it does not clean as well, because the firmness prevents the eraser from getting deep into the fibers. That said, as far as sticky erasers go, if you are erasing on writing paper this will do the job well enough. No need to spring for a more expensive eraser to protect the paper in a Field Notes. This will more than do the job and keep eraser crumbs from messing your desk.

This is a great eraser for pocket carry. It works great as a fidget and also as an everyday eraser. Like most of the Apsara or Nataraj erasers you can find packs of 20 for sale on Amazon, but the prices fluctuate from $7 up to $50. The good thing is that if you order a pack of Apsara pencils, there is almost always an eraser and sharpener in the bundle, which makes them a good deal. Continue reading

Review: Matumaru-Kun Gold Plastic Eraser

I picked up the Matumaru-Kun Gold on rec from my RSVP co-host Dee over at The Weekly Pencil.

It measures 1 3/4 x 1/2 x 1″ or 45X15X25mm.  This is a great size for pocket carry. It isn’t small enough to disappear (looking at you pebble) but it’s also not large enough to make an unsightly pocket bulge. And hey, it will even fit into the pockets of lady pants. The paper cover wears quickly. The gold on mine wore off in days of use, though I really like the worn look.

It is super soft and sticky- so no dusty eraser crumbs everywhere. It works really quite well at picking graphite off smooth and rough paper. Rough paper eats this eraser up though, so be aware that things can get pricy. It does not shine up coated papers or watercolor paper, so that is really nice. It sticks to itself well and leaves no mess.

The eraser performs similarly to a Sakura Foam at about the same price point. The big difference is that the Sakura Foam is offered in more size options. I’ll likely toss  a Hindowashi eraser into my cart every time I order from CWPE. The price and performance is close enough to Sakura Foam to be virtually indistinguishable.

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Review: Nataraj Trio Eraser

This eraser arrived bundled with a package of Nataraj Trikone pencils along with a pencil sharpener. It arrives wrapped in plastic inside the box of triangular pencils.

The eraser measures roughly 35mm L x20mm W x15mm H, or 1.25 in x 0.625 in X 0.75in. Mine is traditional eraser pink but they are available in an assortment of colors. The eraser is an equilateral triangle with rounded corners, much like their Trikone pencil. This is a dust free or sticky eraser. It is soft, squishy, and has a sticky texture that is off putting when first used. The sticky feeling tones down through use.

The eraser works the best of all the dust free options from Hindustan. It is super soft and squishy so it really scrubs graphite out of the fibers of paper. Because it is so soft and squishy it does wear away quickly. It does not harm the paper as it’s being used. I was able to use it in my Paper-oh! Ondulo and it didn’t shine up the coating of the paper as would harder erasers. This is important if you are making art or are using paper with a delicate coating like Paper-oh! It also seemed to do well on rougher paper, like my 3×5 cheapie cards. Rough paper does eat the eraser up, but it does a great job.

If I were going to adopt an eraser for everyday use as well as art making, this would be it. First they are cheap- bundled with Nataraj triangular pencils but you can buy a box of 20 of them for about $8 via Amazon. Which brings them to about 40 cents per eraser. It doesn’t get cheaper than that for an eraser that works this well. The Hindowashi Gold is  $1.75 at CWPE. A Sakura Foam in a similar size is $1.65 via Jetpens.

If you can’t tell from this review, I like this eraser, a lot. It’s a great value and it really erases well while preserving the surface of the paper. I may have a box of 20 sitting in my Amazon cart… Continue reading

Review: Nataraj Jumbo Plasto Eraser

Nataraj (and Apsara) includes a block eraser and sharpener in every pack of 10 pencils you buy. The eraser measures 3.5*1.7*10mm, is made of firm white plastic, and sports red printing on one side. The red printing has the brand name Nataraj in a red stripe and the words Jumbo Plasto. On both my erasers the printing is slightly different and the color of the red differs ever so slightly. In use the printing blurs under my fingers, but leaves no marks upon paper or my hand.The firm white plastic reminds me very much of the Staedtler Mars Plastic and performs as well, if not better. It is not dust gathering. I’ve tested it across No Brand Notebooks, Field Notes, Yoobi Composition Notebooks, cheap 3×5 cards, Story Supply Company notebooks, and the cheap recycled paper at work. Overall it performs really quite well removing most of the graphite from most of the papers. Here and there it would leave a  ghost of an image but if one is writing over the space, it isn’t noticeable.

The size is perfect for pocket carry. It’s small so it disappears in a pocket but isn’t so small (think of the KiN pebble) that it is lost when you reach for it. The edges are rounded and comfortable to use. The Nataraj eraser is naked while the Apsara is sleeved in a little card stock sleeve. Somewhere in  my piles of stationery shit, I have a sleeved Apsara, one might think I could find it for this review, but no, it remains hidden. I’ve been carting this eraser around in my pocket and it has provided not only useful for erasing but has also served as a very pleasing worry stone.

I have to say, that though this is a “freebie” it certainly adds to the appeal of the bonus items in the Nataraj boxes. Some bundled erasers are truly horrible, but these are darn nice.

Review: Koh-i-Noor Thermoplastic Eraser

In one of my last CWPE orders I added the $1.75 Thermoplastic to my cart. It was a whim, as if I needed another eraser. I ordered the teal, because I really like teal. Anyway, I was looking for a pocket eraser that would stand up well without needing protection from the wear and tear of pocket carry.KINH

Anyway, this hexagonal teal eraser is a nice size and shape for both pocket carry and using as a fidget and worry stone. It is a decent general eraser but it doesn’t do as good a job as the Sakura foam. It cleans well enough for writing but it is too hard and stiff to really get deep into the fibers of the paper, so a little bit of graphite remains. It does a decent enough job for quick notes and notebook use. I was happy with how well it did with the majority of my pocket notebooks.KINH

The hexagonal shape allows for many corners and edges for detailed erasing and getting into single lines for erasure. It wears well and for a quick eraser doesn’t leave a ton of crumbs on the page. It does leave crumbs though, so be aware you’ll be dusting off your page and desk after useage. It isn’t gritty so it is gentle on the surface of your page. It isn’t as aggressive as a Pearl or other silica containing eraser.

Overall, it’s not a bad eraser. It feels nice in the hand and is gentle on the paper. Granted it doesn’t remove all the graphite but that isn’t really needed for notes and writing. It is worth the price, plus it is a  really really pretty teal color.

Review: Mitsubishi Boxy Eraser

After reading a bunch of reviews I sprang for a Boxy eraser. I’ll also admit that I have a thing for black erasers. They are super cool, or have been stuck in that “super cool” frame since I was 12 and in 8th grade and most erasers were pink. I missed out on the bright neon Yikes! erasers that came out in the following years. See I graduated straight from pink pearls to art erasers, and once I became an art kid only art erasers would do. I digress, back to the Boxy.Boxy

I must admit that I was underwhelmed with the Boxy when I first used it and it has sat in  my eraser cart* for months before I pulled it into regular rotation. The only reason I pulled it into regular rotation at all was because I misplaced my Sakura Foam, which is STILL the greatest eraser of all time. When compared to the Foam, the Boxy falls short. The Foam is still superior.Boxy

Enough talk about the Foam, the Boxy is not a BAD eraser, it’s a great eraser. First off it is a great shape, the long squared rectangle is perfect for cleaning lines of text out of small tight areas.It also cleans my soft dark 2B and 4B pencils off every page I’ve used. I used the Boxy during a class and it cleared away General’s Cedar Pointe #1 graphite off a composition book page like it had never been there. The soft body of the Boxy got into the nooks and crannies of my writing and cleared that graphite until it was gone.Boxy Boxy Boxy

I also got a chance to test out the Boxy on some art. I had sketched a drawing onto really rough thick paper and then inked it with Carbon Black in a brush pen. Loads of dark pigment over the graphite. Now the main issue when cleaning up graphite is that the eraser also picks up some of the ink and either smudges or grays it out. The Boxy did not gray out my image, at all. Areas that were damp smudged but the dry ink didn’t turn gray. Which is awesome.Boxy Another added benefit of the Boxy is that it is sturdy enough to carry in a pocket without any additional protection other than it’s own paper sleeve. The Sakura Foam turns blue in the pocket of my jeans and seems to shrink as the cotton wears away at it’s soft body. The Boxy has none of these issues. First it’s black, so even if it were dirty who would know? And secondly it’s a smidge firmer than the foam so the simple act of walking doesn’t create quite enough friction to wear it down.

Now my biggest gripe with the Boxy is that it leaves crumbs everywhere. The eraser bits, so eloquently known as crumbs, roll up a bit but don’t stick to themselves or to the eraser. Because it is a soft eraser, it makes  a ton of crumbs. After using the Sakura Foam for so long I spent a few minutes looking at the mess of crumbs on my paper and trying to press the eraser to them to see if they would stick with little success.  Your page must be brushed or tapped clean. I don’t find this quite as annoying when drawing as I do when I’m making notes in a notebook, the crumbs get caught in the gutter of the book and leave bumps. Annoying.Boxy

Bottom line: The Boxy does a fantastic job of cleaning the page and stands up to pocket carry better than the Sakura Foam. If you are looking for a pocket eraser that does a great job, get the Boxy, Available at a bunch of retailers, but I got mine from Jetpens with my own cash money for general use and not for teh purposes of review. The review occurred organically.

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Review: Sakura “Super” Foam Eraser

A few week’s ago Johnny Gamber of Pencil Revolution, my comrade in pencils, posted a picture of the always wonderful Staedtler Mars Plastic Eraser(SMPE). It’s one of my long time favorite erasers. It’s plastic is gentle on paper and soft enough to clean graphite out of almost any rough paper. It is an eraser that I suggest to friends who are seeking a good eraser. I do this for many reason. First you can’t get a SMPE just about anywhere. Every art, craft, or stationary store carries them. Second, I have used them for years and know they are reliable. Third, there is something safe in recommending this old standard. I don’t know anyone who doesn’t like it, it’s a safe recommendation.20150212_100920It has a few problems. The largest is that it’s a messy eraser that leaves crumbs everywhere. It also collects dirt as if it is a magnet. So if you are bothered by your erasers looking filthy, well, this one is going to piss you off. Finally, without it’s paper sleeve it tends to tear into smaller pieces if you don’t support it well with your fingers. Th9is is why I told Johnny to “up his eraser game, and get the Sakura “Super*” Foam Eraser.”SakuraFoamThe Sakura Foam Eraser (SFE) is a soft, white plastic eraser that arrives in a bit of cellophane and a card sleeve. It has a sticky texture that I’ve grown to love. The stickiness allows the crumbs to be rolled into a ball that sticks to the end of the eraser or picked up by pressing the eraser to the crumbs. When I read the sticky rubber info online I thought it was kinda stupid, but oh no, it makes clean up so much easier. That’s not just add copy, that’s a really real useful addition to the plain old plastic eraser.SakuraFoamIt is a super soft plastic that wears down pretty quickly on rougher paper. But it’s also relatively cheap at Jetpens. I don’t find it to be that much softer than the SMPE in use they seem to wear down at about the same rate. It cleans the page of every trace of graphite. On some paper it’s as if the writing never existed at all. It is soft enough to get down into the crevices left by the writing and clean the graphite out. Which is pretty amazing. Then when you are done cleaning, the crumbs are all clumped up and clinging to one another or to the eraser.SakuraFoamI have has small bits break off the edges of my eraser as I used it, but like I wrote, these bits were small, and didn’t affect performance of the eraser. I did not get any cracking where the eraser and the paper sleeve met. I also purchased the smallest offering on Jetpens, though I later purchased a much larger version when I neared the end of my small SFE W60. This should be an indication of just how much I enjoy this eraser. I own over a dozen different erasers and I bought a duplicate. I haven’t bought a duplicate of any eraser save a kneaded, a SMPE, and a few that were required in college. For me to buy a second of any eraser, now, when I can purchase any eraser that I desire. Well, that’s a ringing endorsement.SakuraFoam SakuraFoamSakuraFoamAnyway, you can up your eraser game by purchasing a Sakura “Super” Foam Eraser of your very own.
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Review: Forest Choice Pencil

IMAG1724My least favorite of the pencils in the Pencils.com Palomino pencil pack is the Forest Choice. This “least favorite” business must be qualified with the fact it’s my least favorite of a group of spectacular pencils. IMAG1725

This is a very good looking pencil. It’s incense cedar case is lightly finished with a clear finish. the green imprint is crisp and includes the logo and website. The ferrule is a nice evergreen color and holds a pink eraser. The ferrule is fixed securely. Even after repeated use it doesn’t loosen.

The cedar sharpens with ease in any sharpener. The core holds a nice point with the KUM long point sharpener or a wedge. It’s labeled an HB and performs as such when compared to normal type pencils. In the Palomino world this would be rated an H as it’s the hardest of the group of pencils. As such it’s pretty good for underdrawings or taking notes, as the harder core holds a point better than a softer core. It will not give a range of shades nor a deep dark.IMAG1726

I like the look of this pencil very much, but wish it came with the standard Palomino core. This is a nice core but for my preferences not soft and smooth enough. Honestly though, if you are looking for an ecologically minded pencil for note taking or writing this is a great pencil. Even for basic sketching this is a great pencil.

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Review: Palomino HB Pencil

In my next to last review of the individual pencils in the Palomino mixed pencil pack from pencils.com  I’m looking at the Palomino premium HB eraser topped pencil. It’s features a perfect bright orange finish with a gold imprint. The ferrule is a matching gold colored ferrule holding a white eraser. The ferrule is well fitted to the pencil and stays strong even after repeated use. The eraser is, like most Palomino erasers, disappointing. For writing and general use it cleans most of the pencil off the page but to really clean the page you’ll need a stick or block eraser.IMAG1733

The pencil is made of incense cedar, smells great, and sharpens easily. The core holds a point really well from any of the sharpeners I’ve used. It is especially good with the KUM long point sharpener. The Palomino HB rating is similar to a 2B in most other brands of pencils. That makes this pencil super smooth in use. The point also wears down pretty quickly for class notes. But for drawing, this is a great pencil. It gives a nice gradation of shades, and decent darks.IMAG1734

These are not extreme value pencils. A 12-pack will cost around $13. Compared to other art pencils this isn’t a bad deal. Palomino sells the HB pencil in 12-packs. It’s unfortunately that Palomino doesn’t sell the 2B- 6B pencils in mixed drawing pencil pack in individual packages of 6 or 12. It’s a fantastic pencil for writing or drawing.IMAG1735

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Review: Palomino Golden Bear

The Palomino Golden Bear is my second review of the pencils.com Palomino pencil pack pencils. The Golden Bear pencils (GB) are in the mid-range grouping of the pack. The are available in blue and orange. Like all of the Palomino pencils the finish is crisp and perfect. the ferrule is brass with an orange stripe in the middle, on both colors of pencil. It is fitted to the pencil sturdily and without any wiggle, even after repeated use of the eraser. The blue eraser is fitted with an orange eraser and the orange pencil has a blue eraser. The erasers are okay, but not great. For sketching one will need a block or stick eraser to do a job. For just writing, the included eraser is just fine.

The GB is made of cedar and as a result sharpens easily and smells great. Using any of my sharpeners, like the KUM long point or wedge. the lead itself holds a point well. The lead is an HB so it’s a good balance of soft and hard for writing. It won’t need to be sharpened every 5 seconds of writing and drawing. The lead is a nice dark shade, but won’t give you deep darks as you draw. It gives a decent range of shades for an HB but to get true dark shades you’ll need to switch to another pencil.

IMAG1732This is a completely enjoyable pencil that looks great and is great to use. A 12-pack on pencils.com is about $3. Not a bad price for a pencil that performs as well as this one. The pencil was made in this US. IMAG1730

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