I must admit, I bought my Ohto Sharp pencil as a novelty. It’s a mechanical pencil disguised as a traditional wood pencil, and if you don’t look closely, it’ll surely fool you.
The Ohto Sharp pencil has a 0.5mm lead size with rear click lead advancement. It’s topped with a pink eraser, and refills are available.
Because of its light weight and hexagonal shape, it really has a traditional wood pencil-like feel to it as well.
The APS-280E is available in three colors – green, dark red, and brown. It’s made in Japan.
Frankly, the Ohto Sharp doesn’t provide the best mechanical pencil experience, but I still get a kick out of it when I use it. It’s not a bad pencil for the price.
Buy Now(Green via Amazon)
Buy Now(Green, brown, or dark red via JetPens)
There is also the APS-250N, a slightly different version with an eraser-less end cap.
Buy Now(via Amazon)
I’m not a huge fan of the APS-280E; it’s OK, but just doesn’t “click” for me.
OTOH, I really like the APS-680E in natural wood, with 2mm lead and eraser. I use it as a marking pencil.
(Link is to Cult Pens in the UK; I bought it from them on-sale, and bought enough stuff to make the shipping charges worthwhile. I’ve found Ohto products are hard to find in the US, although it appears the situation is better now).
Thanks TonyT. I think I’ll order one or two of these and have my kid send them over. Shipping to a local UK address is free for orders over 15 quid.
Be careful – Cult Pens has a lot of cool stationery items, so it’s too easy to spend more than you planned….and they have frequent sales (IIRC, I bought my Ohto pens & pencils at 20% off).
BTW, the free shipping within the UK is nice, but on the flip side, since I’m outside Europe, I didn’t have to pay VAT.
Is this printed wood grain on plastic? or did they insert metal guts into a wood body?
The body is real wood – if it just had wood grain plastic, it’d be cheesy and not worth the price (I have a wood grain Daiso mechanical pencil, but it was only $1.50).
As far as I can tell, it’s a wood pencil with lead tube in place of pencil lead, and a click mechanism at the rear. Feels like wood, looks like wood, smells like wood.
It’s described on JetPens as having a “genuine wood outer body.”
Mike (the other one)
I wonder how many of these have been accidentally stuck in a pencil sharpener.
For those who can get to major cities, Japanese bookstores (like Kinokuniya, across the street from Bryant Park and the NY Public Library in Manhattan, with other branches in the US) and the Japanese retail chain Muji (which also has stores in many larger US cities) are great places to find and buy mechanical pencils, fountain pens, notebooks, etc.
Muji also has lots of containers in different departments (e.g., in their toiletry area) that could be used to help organize your shop.
And if you’re in California check out Daiso – often good for storage, notebooks, occasionally pens and pencils, and just plain weird stuff.
Kinokuniya does have some Ohto items (I’ve bought Vi-vac pens there, which at least at that time weren’t available on Amazon or JetPens) but their selection is a fraction of what Cult Pens has
For six bucks it’s worth a try!