Showing posts with label koh-i-noor. Show all posts
Showing posts with label koh-i-noor. Show all posts

Friday, September 25, 2020

Koh-I-Noor 2mm pencil and lead, 6 color set

2 mm colored lead koh i noor
I wanted to try out some colored pencils for daily business. Mostly to make marks or annotations on documents in a more visible way compared to a regular black pencil. In the past I did not have a very good experience with mechanical pencil colored leads so I tried something else, 2 mm leads. I found the only 2 mm leads in color available locally are the Koh I Noor ones.
They came in a 6 pack that contains a black one, red, blue, brown, yellow and green. The cool thing about them is that Koh-I-Noor also sells a similar pack with 2 mm clutch pencils. The pencils come in the same colors as the leads. Pretty nice.
The leads are made in the Czech Republic and come in a red plastic box with a clear top that has a Koh I Noor logo. The top slides to reveal the leads inside. They are very secure inside but if you only have one clutch pencil and you want to switch leads often grabbing them from the pack is not too easy.
The price is good as with all the Koh I Noor products. I got them for 1.51 EURO or 1.84 USD.
The colors are ok, not very vibrant but not dull. The black is the one I do not like. It feels like a colored pencil instead of a regular lead, plus it could be a bit darker. For example, a Faber Castell 2 mm lead 3B is smoother and produces a darker line.

The brown, blue, green look good and can be used for marking stuff with no problems. The red is a bit dull and not very vibrant but it is ok. The yellow is no surprise here, it can only be used for highlighting, as it is too washed out to write with it.
My favorite colors are the green and blue, followed by the brown and then red.
An erase test showed that they are not too stubborn and can be erased without too many problems. I have put to the test the Rotring Tikky and the Faber Castell Dust Free 187121 erasers. The Faber Castell did a much better job.




Friday, April 10, 2020

Koh-I-Noor limited edition ink



I have spotted on the Koh-I-Noor site that they have a new ink for sale.

It uses the same plastic 50 ml bottle as the standard one but it is about 5 times more expensive.

The name Koh I Noor is missing from the label, just Hardtmuth. I guess this is because it is a limited edition from the "HARDTMUTH collection".

Blue or black are the only available colors.
I didn't test it yet, I hope I will in the future, but I would like for Koh I Noor to make more colors at least for the "special collections". As their inks come in basic blue, black or red.


Saturday, March 28, 2020

Sunday Sudoku

Like many others, I found myself with a lot more time on my hands. I have a long list of stuff I would like to do like learn to ride a skateboard, make a bonsai, pick up the guitar again, read 3 books, exercise and others. But for this Sunday I wanted to enjoy the hobby that made me create the blog. As I do not know how to draw and I am not that much into journaling I thought Sudoku is a great way to use my beloved pencils and erasers, exercise the brain and kill some time. All with one stone.
I think I overstretched downloading some "moderate" Sudoku. The first took me about 2 hours and the second more than 3, as I found a mistake almost at the end, which set me back a lot. I tried a 3rd moderate Sudoku but abandoned it after an hour and 3 numbers discovered.
Koh-I-Noor Mephisto Mechanical pencil 0.7 HB
Koh-I-Noor Hardtmuth eraser

Thursday, March 5, 2020

Soft Eraser Koh-I-Noor souvenir from Prague

This is the last from the bag of goodies. The Koh I Noor round soft eraser.
The number one thing about it is the unique looks. The logo covers the entire face of the eraser, and it looks awesome. The colors and the printing make this basic white eraser look apart.
If I am not mistaking this model comes in 3 sizes, this one, and two other bigger versions. This has a 37.5 mm diameter and 12 mm in thickness.
The eraser works fine, but it doesn't shine in any area. It's a classic eraser that leaves dust everywhere, it picks dirt on it, and the erasing is fine but not special. It doesn't need much pressure to do its job. I would call it a good all-around eraser.
koh i noor hardtmuth eraser
It only cost 25 CZK which translates in just a little under 1 Eur 0.98 at today's exchange rate.
This is one of the best souvenirs you can get in my opinion. Forget the magnets, just get one of these.

Thursday, February 20, 2020

Document Ink Koh I Noor Prague trip

prague koh i noor pencil since 1790 hardmuth
This is a long-awaited moment for me, as I have been looking for this ink from Koh-I-Noor for some time with no success. I could not find it locally anywhere and it was the same story the first time I have visited Prague. It was not available in the shop. On my second visit I did not put much hope in finding it but ... here it is.
And when it rains it pours, I see that the official Koh I Noor website is selling it in Romania as well. For now, it is available only online, but maybe in the future, it will be available in stores as well; fingers crossed.

The Document ink is Koh I Noor's permanent ink. Available in blue or black colors, plastic bottles as the standard Koh I Noor ink, and in a more classic ink well made out of glass which comes in a cardboard box.
I have bought the more "elegant" version.
The inkwell has a classic look to it, with a white label on the face. The logo of Koh I Noor, underneath Document ink is written along with the quantity, 30 grams. 
It is a very dated design, a bit boring but I am not going to judge the ink by its label.
glass well permanent ink blue 30g

In this setup, it is more expensive. The price was 87 CZK which is 3.42 EUR or 3.82 USD. It is still very accessible but the standard ink is about 3 times cheaper and the quantity is almost double. 

But the comparison is not fair as the standard ink comes only in plastic bottles and not in a more premium glass well. You can "czeck" the standard ink out in this older post.

As I said this is a more expensive ink due to the fact it is permanent and because mine came in a glass ink well. But if you choose to buy the plastic bottle (image of it to the left) you will receive the same formula of ink in a  more economical package, and maybe a nicer design of the bottle and label.
This bottle is 50 ml and costs around 2.10 euros. Much better pricing. If we compare the cost of the document ink in plastic bottle to the standard ink the prices are closer as the standard costs around 1.25eur.



The box is plain white with blue writing. If you get the black document ink the writing on the box will be black. The design of the box is quite underwhelming, I will leave it at that.

ink well blue boxink well box

And apparently, it is not to be used by penguins?! I did not know why Koh I Noor forbids penguins to use their ink, a bit racist.
But it turns out this means that you should not freeze it.
ink well blue box made in Czech rep


The ink performs well, as I expected. It works well on cheap paper, it is smooth, it dries fast, and it does what is meant to do. It stays on paper regardless of external factors. It is an archiving ink so it is no thrills. The light blue looks nice but nothing special


The water resistance is excellent. You cant get it out of the paper no matter what you do to it.
I tested it under running tap water high flow cold and hot for 30 seconds.
I also left a piece of paper underwater for close to 10 minutes. The paper was a bit fragile and I just wanted to make sure it does not disintegrate

Before and after pictures.
 
note: I would like to say that the variance in color is caused by the lighting and the camera.

I am also testing the ink's resistance to UV rays. I will be back with the results.


PS. After taking a look at Koh I Noor website I see they have a new ink limited edition. It seems it is in the same plastic 50 ml bottle but the sticker is different.

Friday, February 7, 2020

Mephisto 0.7 Koh-I-Noor Prague souveniers


The second pencil souvenier in line from my recent trip to Prague, is a mechanical pencil named Mephisto.
I will spoil the read saying this is another gem by Koh-I-Noor. I was surprised by how nice the pencil feels and how well it is built.
The pencil features a plastic construction. It is available in different colors, and I chose this incredible dark metallic red color (almost candy apple).

It has a rubberized grip that may not appeal to everybody. Not to mention that the grip seems a bit high and it has an hourglass shape. So you can't really move your fingers too much up or down. It certainly has a sweet spot, it forces you to hold it in the way the designer thought you should hold the pencil.
Besides this, which is not a big deal for me, the rest of the pencil is awesome.

The clip has the name Koh-I-Noor stamped on it. Not too dip, but a nice touch. This is the only place where the name Koh I Noor appears on the pencil. The clips is very solid.

On the barrel, the name Mephisto and lead size are printed in silver lettering. Also, the plastic is color-coded, blue for 0.7 mm lead.

Like most pencils, it has a standard white eraser, covered by a chromed end cap with a hole on top for safety reasons. The endcap slides on and off easily, but not to easy. I did not have any trouble with it falling on its own while in the bag.
The lead is loaded by removing the entire color-coded plastic, along with the eraser and the chromed cap.
The cone tip is stainless or some sort of chromed metal.
It hides a retractable tip that works flawlessly. Either if you hide it or deploy it the action is smooth and does not require any pressure.
And the thing I love the most is the lack of wiggle of the tip. Just after seeing this implementation I can tell the pencil is incredibly well built. Most of the pencils in this price tier and above struggle. Not the end of the world but a definite turn off, especially if you are a stickler like me.

This pencil costs a little more, 113 czk which translates to 4.44 EUR or 4.93 USD.

Wednesday, January 8, 2020

Mechanical Pencil Koh-I-Noor Versatil 5216, Prague souveniers


As you can remember from my recent post, I have visited Prague and 2 Koh-I-Noor shops. And of course, I had to bring back home a few souvenirs.
The first rabbit out of the bag is a Koh-I-Noor clutch pencil with 2 mm lead, Versatil 5216.
This first picture is not an exact representation of it's looks as it has a paler purple color and not a blueish tone.
The pencil looks very nice in my opinion, not to mention the price was incredible. Just 65 CZK (Czeck Koruna) which equates to 2.55 EUR or 2.84 USD. A real bargain.

The pencil body is a hexagon, painted in a nice purple color with gold lettering on one side. Koh - I Noor Hardmuth Versatil 5216. The printing could be improved as some of the letters are a bit fuzzy. The barrel I think it is made out of aluminum, while the mechanism inside is stainless steel and what looks like copper.
I have to say I am very pleased with the construction, I was expecting a cheap all-plastic no thrills 2 mm clutch pencil. The pencil has an integrated 4 spike sharpener in the push button as most Koh I Noor lead holders, and no pocket clip. It is a very classic design that I like, with a nice touch of modern brought by the colors it comes in.

The grip on the lead is good as the lead will not rotate when you try to sharpen it and will not slide in when you apply vertical pressure on the lead. This is nothing to brag about, as it should be standard, but Koh I Noor had this issue with some variants of this pencil made out of plastic.
 

All in all I am very surprised by this mechanical pencil. Its low price and good quality, the feel in hand is great and the colors it is available in. I love it and I recommend everybody to get one or more of these pencils.

Saturday, December 7, 2019

Trip to Prague, Koh-I-Noor shop hunt

koh i noor pencils prague, storefront

I had been to Prague and of course, I had to go hunting for Koh-I-Noor shops. 

As beautiful as Prague is, the weather was not the best, not even close. Around 1 - 3 degrees Celsius with constant rain. I wondered on the streets but because of the weather, and the limited time available, I only got to visit 2 of the shops. One of the shops I have been to the previous time I have been in Prague (link).
What I really like is Koh-I-Noor knows how to promote themselves and associate the stationary brand to Czech and to Prague. Going to a Koh-I-Noor shop in Prague is just like visiting a landmark, a church, a bridge. They are landmarks of Prague.

koh i noor hedgehog pencils
  The first Koh-I-Noor shop was in the old center. I don't think it is a Koh-I-Noor franchise shop as the shop was a mix of pencils and souvenirs. Also, it was kind of a tourist trap as everything inside seamed overprice to me. On Google maps you will find this shop under the name Koh-I-Noor Pencils.
 

The second shop was the one I have visited previously. A very large shop dedicated exclusively to the Koh-I-Noor products (Koh-I-Noor Hardmuth as). It is located in the vicinity of Prague Castle. This shop had a smaller selection of clutch and mechanical pencils and it was more oriented to the artists out there. But I still managed to find some very interesting products at good prices.
koh i noor hedgehogs
I really like the decor Koh-I-Noor uses in the shops. It has a feeling of traditional, classy and very friendly. Also, they address a very wide range of customers. From kids to artists or just to the average person.
koh i noor hedgehog

Wednesday, November 27, 2019

Preview Koh-I-Noor hunt

These are the souvenirs that I brought back from my visit to Prague. This and a bag of chocolates that I forgot at the airport. The good part about the times we live in is, when someone spots an unattended bag in an airport, the security gets alerted imideatly.
So after forgetting my chocolate bag on a bench, I went through security, then back to see if I can find it where I left it. Of course, it wasn't where I left it so I went through security again. After I heard my name on the airport loudspeaker. The bag is waiting for me at the gate.
If it would have been beer instead of chocolate I don't think I would have been so lucky.

Saturday, September 21, 2019

Review Koh-I-Noor Notebook 2 mm mechanical pencil

The Versatil from Koh-I-Noor that I talked about in the post Koh-I-Noor Versatil lead holder from 70s, made me a bit nostalgic about the 2 mm lead holders. And after seeing the Koh-I-Noor Notebook 2 mm pencil, codename 5608, I couldn't help myself and just got one.
The pencil has a very nice design, combining the classic, futuristic looks. I do not know why but the design takes my imagination to the 60s, old small cars with chrome and typewriters. Weird combination..
For me, this was the selling point.
The first thing about the pencil that comes to mind when you have it in hand is "this is soo small". The length of it is a perfect size, I would call it compact. It is long enough to have a good grip on it and it is small enough to fit anywhere. But because the pencil is very thin it contributes to the look. The purpose of this was EDC, no doubt.
Size comparison Koh I Noor Notebook 2 mm and Koh I Noor 5.6 mm

There is a compromise when it comes to ergonomics in the detriment of size. The pencil is fine for short period of writing and for jotting things down, and the knurled grip feels very nice in the hand.  But even for small hands like mine, when I write more, it becomes a bit uncomfortable because it is so thin with around 8 mm in diameter.

So because of its small size and its cool looks, you will be inclined to have it with you all the time.

There are a few things about the Koh I Noor that I do not like, or I would prefer to be better made. The barrel is not attached to the mechanism. I mean that the lead and the clutch rotates freely in the barrel of the pencil. So if you want to sharpen the lead in it you have two options. The first option is to hold it by the lead and rotate it in the sharpener, and the second is to hold it from the advance button which moves along with the clutch mechanism and the lead.
The second complaint is about the clicking mechanism doesn't seem to be sturdy, and mine is rubbing inside between the mechanism and the barrel. I would say this will not last you a lifetime like the old Versatil will.
Koh I Noor has kept the classic 4 tooth sharpener that is hidden in the advance button. It is a nice touch but 2 mm pencils like Rotring 300 have a better sharpening system built in. And talking about the sharpener, it comes loose easily. I found the pencil several times without this little part attached, only my luck made me find it in the bag or on the desk. But take it into consideration that you might loose it.

These negative points destroy a little bit the aura of the pencil and the brand name. I don't want to say it is made cheap but I would prefer that Koh I Noor would put a little more effort into making a better pencil.



If you want to czech more things about Koh I Noor you could start with these posts:
Koh-I-Noor Versatil lead holder from 70s
Koh-I-Noor in Prague

Friday, March 22, 2019

Pencil highlighter



I saw on the internet that Kaweco has a 5.6 mm highlighter lead, and I think it is just awesome. I like the idea of using a pencil highlighter, you do not get smudges, no bleed, and the pencil will not fade with time. But it is pretty hard to get the 5.6 mm leads, as they don't seem to be very popular. From the searches made almost the only place you can buy them is jetpens.com
They come either mixed, a yellow, a red and a green or a pack of 3 with the same color inside. At the moment of writing this post, the pack of 3 is $ 6.5 and a free shipping in USA for orders above $ 25
They look cool and vibrant but why not use a regular color lead instead of the "highlighter" ones?

I made a short test with the Koh I Noor 2 mm lead 6 color pack. All the colored leads are very good as a highlighter, as they are vibrant enough to be seen but not too intense that they obscure the writing beneath. The downside is the small diameter, and the fact the leads are not extra soft. Because of this, you will need a shading move of the pencil to highlight the row. So maybe a little extra work. I wonder how the 5.6 colored Koh I Noor leads work for this kind of stuff.
Bellow is the Kaweco highlighter (picture from jetpens.com) and to the right is the Koh I Noor regular color lead.

picture from jetpens.com

Wednesday, February 27, 2019

Magic pencil Koh I Noor


This has been my view this last few days, during my ride home from work. To better understand some explanations are due. I live in a city that is surrounded by hills, and close to it, approx 30km there are small mountains. I would say it is a pretty nice place. But during winter it gets very depressing. Mostly because the day is short and it gets dark early. And second, when it is not dark outside everything is gray. The sky is covered by gray mushy clouds, the light is very flat, and the snow in the city gets gray fast. Not to mention the buildings that look like this all year round. It is unusual to see a beautiful clear sky, especially when you are trapped in an office all day long. But spring is coming and the day is growing in length.
Now when I go home from work I get to enjoy this type of scenery (somewhere in the black bottom part of the image is where I live).
And each time my brain connects it with the Koh - I - Noor Jumbo Special Coloured Magic Pencil. If I could paint or draw, this would definitely be my weapon of choice for such stunning scenery.
    jumbo special coloured MAGIC pencil 3405 fire
jumbo special coloured MAGIC pencil 3405 TROPICAL