How Much Lead Fits In A TWSBI Mechanical Pencil?

I was curious how much lead would fit in a TWSBI mechanical pencil, so I recorded my adventures as I crammed as much lead as I could find into it. Spoiler alert, it’s a lot. But it’s the journey that is the reward, you’re getting to see my unedited reaction to the discovery! It’s a pretty silly video, but I had fun making it, and you may enjoy watching it.

I also did a full review of the TWSBI mechanical pencil here, so be sure to check that out.

I do have a question for you pencil folks, how much lead is good to keep in your pencil? It’s obviously good to have a pretty hefty amount in there, but too much and it jams. What do you find is ideal? I’m just curious, really.

Write On,
Brian Goulet

2017-10-11T03:23:34+00:00 February 13th, 2013|Tips & Tricks|10 Comments
  • Well, my 2.5mm pencil that I use in my workshop has only one lead in it, and it's almost used up after about 8 years. My 1.2mm Pelikan has three or four in it, but it's not auto feeding (you have to open it, take one out, and feed it in from the tip) so it can't really jam.

  • Joshua Sasmor

    My Cross 0.9mm fills the same way – you twist the opening mechanism all the way and slide a new lead in. But I usually carry 4 or so in the barrel. I've been using this pencil on and off for thirty years and I've only bought lead once; I bought 3 packs, since 0.9 isn't that common anymore.

  • I'm a pencil guy. I use a Pentel Kerry 0.7mm most of the time. How much lead? Always one stick short of jamming. πŸ™‚

  • Okay, so I'm not crazy then πŸ™‚ I figure, if you can fill it up, why not?

  • Gotcha…to be fair, you'd probably go through .5mm lead faster than .9mm…..maybe every 20 years instead of 30 πŸ˜‰

  • Jeffrey

    Every responsible mechanical pencil technician knows only 3-5 pieces at a time to minimize damage in case of impulses to the pencil (dropping it). Does that really happen? That's just something my father told me…

  • Jolanda

    Hi Brian,

    I'm a fountainpen addict but i do cross word puzzels and sudoku's with a mechanical pencil…..jammed it up to so i was delighted to see i'm not the only "nutcase" around here.
    Your video was funny to watch….i was lol so…thanks so much dor making me feel so "normal" πŸ™‚

  • I don't know, I'm not a responsible pencil person! Clearly….I crammed it full of 51 sticks…

  • haha, hey, I can be comic relief if nothing else. Funny how I know so much about fountain pens, but I'm a complete novice with pencils!

  • RR4U

    Tough some lead containers can hold a great amount of leads it is not advisable to have them loaded with more than 6 pcs at a time or the mechanism may jam. Some pencils can take more, some Staedtler models can take up to 12 pcs. The most I know of is the Pentel FortΓ© Pro II, it can be loaded with 24 pcs. To sum up, if the max capacity is not stated by the manufacturer, the safest thing to do is to have them loaded with 6 pcs of lead.