Pentel Graphgear 1000: Drafting Pencil for the Masses

Thanks to the Rotring, here I am exploring the realm of mechanical pencils with the Pentel Graphgear 1000 in hand. It’s been a few weeks since I got this pencil and I can’t wait to share my experience. So let’s dive in!

Pentel Graphgear 1000

Pentel is a Japanese company founded in 1946 and has been given credit for inventing the first brush pen or “fibre” and  for inventing roller ball technology. There are even rumors around that secret service agents used their pens for writing secret invisible messages. They also offer a wide range of environmentally friendly writing instruments.

Pentel Graphgear 1000 grip and lead

I love the knurled grip section with the soft latex-free pads. The Graphgear just feels great in the hands. The grip section also spins so you can select the correct lead type in the lead indicator.

Pentel Graphgear 1000 tip sheathed

Pentel Graphgear 1000 Tip extended

Another thing I love about the Pentel Graphgear is the retractable tip. Unlike the Rotring 600 the tip for the Pentel Graphgear retracts back into the pen so you do not break the lead sleeve.

Pentel Graphgear 1000 Nock Sticker

Pentel Graphgear 1000 Clip

It has a click nock that you use to extend the lead sleeve and extract more lead. The lead sleeve is kept in place by a locking mechanism with the clip. To retract the lead sleeve quickly you simply push down on the end of the clip and it shoots back up rather quickly.. However it does not retract the lead.. so keep that in mind.

Pentel Graphgear 1000 Clip Bad

Something to also keep in mind is my clip continues to do this. It seems to keep getting off of the alignment and the clip doesn’t always catch the lock for the lead sleeve to keep it in place and I have to realign the clip so it will catch it. I don’t know if this is a problem with the Pentel Graphgear or if I am just the lucky one.

Pentel Graphgear 1000 Eraser

The eraser is kept hidden under the metal cover and to fill the pencil you just simply pull the eraser and the eraser sleeve out of the butt of the pencil.

Pentel Graphgear 1000 Front Grip Off

Pentel Graphgear 1000 Grip

Pentel Graphgear 1000 logo scratch

Another thing to note is whatever ink they use to print onto the stainless steel body does not stay on very well. I only had this pencil for a few days before the print started coming off. That may actually be a good thing. This pencil would look pretty sexy without the extremely long name, logo, and info taking up half the body.

Pentel Graphgear 1000 Dissassembled


  • Price
  • Weight
  • Retractable Lead Sleeve
  • Knurled grip and soft pads feel great
  • Clips nicely to pants/shirt pocket


  • Clip often gets off alignment and doesn’t catch the lock

Pentel Graphgear 1000

Price: $19

Body Material: Stainless Steel

Lead Size: Available in .3 mm, .4 mm, .5 mm, .7 mm, and .9 mm

Lead Types: 2B, B, HB, H, 2H

Colors: Stainless Steel but soft grip pads come in several color options.


Overall I think this is a great drafting pen. It is a little bit less expensive than the Rotring 600 and has a retractable lead sleeve, which is awesome, but it can feel a little cheap at times.. especially with the clip not always catching the locking mechanism to keep the lead sleeve fully extended. Overall this is a nice pen and can see this as a valid competitor to the Rotring 600 but at that price and even without the retractable lead sleeve I think the Rotring has this pen still beat. With that said, this is still a great pen, especially to through in a pocket when heading out the door because the clip works greats with that and you don’t have to worry about breaking the lead sleeve.  Anyways, check it out at !

What kind of mechanical pencils or even wood case pencils do you like to use? let me know in the comments below or reach out to me in the contact section. I always love reading what you guys have to say!




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