From a company that normally is pretty rock solid on design, does the Palomino Prospector strike gold? (lol.. I know, pretty awful) Today I am pretty excited to share with you my experience with using the Palomino Prospector. I’ve spent the week using this pencil and I can’t wait to talk about it! So let’s get our sharpeners out and get started.
From the company that has brought us the Blackwing line and many others, I really wanted to check out some of their more budget friendly products. I’ve reviewed the Blackwing 602 and I wanted to see what the other side of the scale looks like. The 602 was $2 a pencil and now we look at some that are $0.18 a pencil.
The Palomino Prospectors can be found easily on Pencils.com, a great online store for the companies that produce pencils using the high quality incense-cedar wood slats from California Cedar Products Company. Palomino is a division of Calcedar which is responsible for production of the Prospector, Golden Bear, Forest Choice, Palomino HBs, and the Blackwing line. The Palomino Prospector was produced in their Thailand factories up until 2012 and then it was moved to the United States.
This is a great looking pencil. The Prospector is only available in your standard #2 (HB) graphite grade and is recommended for test taking and general purpose use. I love the green lacquer. This green absolutely pops and is very pleasing to the eye. It is also well complemented with its gold foil imprints and ferrule with a white eraser to top it all off.
The cores are well centered in the Basswood casings. They are a little cracked at the end but I haven’t had any issues sharpening down.
The HB graphite keeps a point for your average amount of time.. Nothing special performance wise with writing.. however I would wear headphones because the Prospector sings like a drunken sailor when you write. This pencil wasn’t scratchy at all, it actually wrote really smooth but it was very noisy. If you are like me and where headphones through out the day or play a lot of music you’ll be fine but in a quiet test environment the whistling noise you hear may drive you mad.
The eraser was also not awful. It actually did erase fairly decently. The eraser didn’t rip off when trying to rub down and it also didn’t melt away at the softest erase. For the price it seemed pretty decent. It was definitely not a let down at all.
The Palomino Prospector writes a little bit lighter than the other HB’s I tried like the premium Tombow Mono 100 or the Faber Castell Grip 2001. It also smeared more than the others.. So keep that in mind.
Last but not least, my honest opinion on whether this pencil is worth the purchase. I am on the fence with this one. The price is amazing and the pencil is absolutely beautiful. IF and only IF you don’t mind writing with a whistle and smearing as you go then I think you’ll be fine but if that isn’t your thing then I would save your $2.25. I love the aesthetics of this pencil and I am pretty happy to be able to say that I have a pack. It may not be perfect but is anything? At least it is only $0.18 a pencil right?
Price: $0.18 a pencil, only available in $2.25 12 pack
Graphite Grade: #2 HB
Finish: Green and Natural Finish