Thursday, March 24, 2011

Electric Pencil Sharpeners

When I started working in colored pencil just over four years ago, I used a small hand-held sharpener, but I quickly realized that it was very time consuming, messy, and strained my hand after hours of work. After about 6 months I got an X-Acto Model 41 pencil sharpener, shown above, and I used it for the past three and a half years.

I know you aren't supposed to use colored pencils in electric pencil sharpeners, but this one worked like a charm - it quickly sharpened my colored pencils to a long, sharp point (many handhelds sharpen to a shorter point, i.e. showing less lead, which wears down more quickly). The other day, when the motor finally gave out, I was frantically researching the latest and greatest in electric pencil sharpeners. I even found one that claimed to be made for colored pencils. Unfortunately, the reviews were less than stellar, many people claiming that theirs broke after a year or less of light use! So I decided to go with the same one as last time.

The sharpener arrived the other day, and so far it's fantastic. It seems quieter than my old one (maybe because the motor was on the way out), and sharpens SO quickly. This model does come with a ten year warranty, but it looks like it might not apply to me because I used colored pencils in the machine. I don't mind though; if this thing can take three and a half more years of abuse with waxy lead, I'm happy!


Lynda Schumacher said...

I am taking note of this information, Holly -- myself and several other cp artists I know had been using a great panasonic model which was discontinued last year. (Fortunately, the last time I ordered one I accidentally ordered THREE instead of one -- hahahahaha.)

Kendra said...

As Lynda said, I loved the Panasonic model which was auto stop but unfortunately you can't find it anymore. I like the electric sharpeners because they sharpen pencils to a crisp point. I was staying in Florida recently and needed a new electric sharpener. My husband rolled his eyes because I went to every office supply store twice before I could decide on a new sharpener. I ended up chosing a Stanley Bostitch Executive Sharpener which didn't say auto stop but it does stop when the pencil is sharpened. I do like this model if anyone is looking for another recommendation. Thank you Holly for your recommendation.