Metal Mechanical Pencils

Aluminium Metal Mechanical Pencil

Last Updated on June 6, 2024 by Matt Hawthorne

Comparing Metal Mechanical Pencils Made of Stainless Steel, Brass, Aluminium and Titanium…

Introduction and Summary:

Discover the advantages of metal mechanical pencils crafted from titanium and steel. Titanium pencils offer a lightweight, corrosion-resistant option with a sleek design, while steel pencils provide a heavier, more traditional feel. Both materials ensure durability and a superior writing experience. Learn why these metals are chosen for high-quality writing instruments and explore the craftsmanship behind Nicholas Hemingway’s collection.

Let’s Begin…

Firstly, titanium has the highest strength-to-weight ratio. It offers exceptional strength as a more lightweight alternative to stainless steel, making it ideal for someone needing a lighter mechanical pencil. Perhaps someone with a less able grip may prefer a lighter metal mechanical pencil. But let’s get on with exploring some of the other metals used for mechanical pencils.

A Stainless Steel Mechanical Pencil, for Example…

Stainless steel is denser and heavier than titanium, aluminum, and brass. Its weight can vary depending on the specific alloy composition. For instance, a stainless steel mechanical pencil can be made of 303 stainless steel. 303 Stainless Steel is an austenitic stainless steel, meaning it contains austenite, a metallic, non-magnetic allotrope of iron containing chromium, nickel, and small amounts of sulfur and phosphorus. The addition of sulfur improves machinability.

Another example of stainless steel would be 416L stainless steel, a low-carbon martensitic stainless steel with additional molybdenum. It contains higher sulfur content than 303 stainless steel, enhancing machinability dramatically compared to 303 stainless steel.

This makes a metal mechanical pencil made from 303 stainless steel much denser than an equivalent mechanical pencil made from 416l stainless steel, with 303 coming out at a density of 8.03 grams per cubic centimetre (g/cm³) and 416l stainless steel coming out at a density of 7.7 g/cm³.

What About an Aluminium Metal Mechanical Pencil…

Aluminium has moderate strength but is less strong than titanium and stainless steel, with a far lower density at 2.70 g/cm³. It compensates with its lightweight nature and good corrosion resistance. This less dense metal suits perfectly if lightness is a must for an artist or designer.

Properties of a Metal Mechanical Pencil Made of Brass?

Brass is commonly used in musical instruments, plumbing fittings, decorative hardware, electrical connectors, and ammunition casings due to its malleability and aesthetic appeal. It is also a favorite metal for mechanical pencils or pens, as it beautifully patinas over time, creating a color many customers desire. Brass has good corrosion resistance but is not as strong as titanium, stainless steel, or aluminium. It may tarnish or corrode over time, especially in the presence of moisture.

Beautiful Handmade Metal Mechanical Pencils Designed and Built by British Designer Nicholas Hemingway Himself

His beautifully hand-built metal mechanical pencils are sold all over the world. Made from titanium, stainless steel, aluminium, and brass, they are collectible according to customers. Many customers purchase all of the varying models to collect a full set. We pride ourselves on good design and great quality metal mechanical pencils. In addition to our metal pencils, we have a range of wooden edition pencils too. All our pencils are designed and handmade by Nicholas Hemingway himself. The story of how he got into designing mechanical pencils and pens is a lovely one.

Beautiful Mechanical Pencils Made from Brass 

Below is Nicholas Hemingway’s Mark II brass mechanical pencil, which ages and patinas with you over time. His products are designed to last a lifetime and even be passed on to relatives one day.

Metal Mechanical Pencils in Brass

Nicholas Hemingway’s mechanical pencils and pens are now bought all over the world. Some of the world’s most famous architects and artists use his pencils today.


Nicholas’ grandfather had his own workshop in his house in Chelsea, London. He was always repairing things while Nicholas, as a young boy, looked on admiringly at the creativity of his grandfather. Far too young to use the lathe that his grandfather owned, he wished he would one day be skilled enough to make something on such a scary and dangerous-looking machine. At only six years old, that seemed a distant thought.

Metal Mechanical Pencils made on his grandfather's lathe

Nicholas’s grandfather’s old lathe which he still hand-turns his metal mechanical pencils on today.

Later in life Nicholas was to study architecture at university. When his grandfather passed, he used his grandfather’s lathe to begin to build a small business in his grandfather’s honour. Developing a product on the very machine he used to watch his grandfather use over the years would be magical. His idea was to hand-build beautiful metal mechanical pencils and build a reputation for quality. All the while loving that his creations would go on to help others create works of art for themselves.

Mark II and Mark III differences…

His Mark II brass mechanical pencil (shown above) is a super elegant model pencil with seamless nib and body design. The heavy weight conducive to a mechanical sketching pencil.  His Mark III slimline brass mechanical pencil (shown below) is a more slender design and a more lightweight choice.

Slimline Mark III Brass Metal Mechanical Pencils

This Mark III metal mechanical pencil has a barrel diameter of 7mm. The larger Mark II has a barrel diameter of 8mm.

The slimmer Mark III is designed for those who may be more prone to suffering from hand fatigue, which affects the hand while drawing for long periods. If you want to learn more about hand fatigue when using metal mechanical pencils, then go here.

If you are looking for something other than brass, we offer other metal mechanical pencils. Our stainless steel mechanical pencil has a gorgeous modern look, as do our titanium mechanical pencils. Please take a look at our full range of metal mechanical pencils here.

Nicholas Hemingway Steel Mechanical Pencil

Our stainless steel metal mechanical pencils are a great weight and very modern addition to your drawing tools…

We offer personalisation on our titanium and stainless steel mechanical pencils as well as our wooden mechanical pencils. A personalised metal mechanical pencil is a great gift to give someone special.

As well as metal pencils and pens we have some lovely handmade wooden mechanical pencils available to order too. All available to order through the website with personalisation too in some instances.

Personalised Metal Mechanical Pencils for Gifts

Here is an example of our personalised stainless steel pencils if you are looking for that perfect gift.

Is it Metal Pens You Are After?…

And if you are after pens, then we have two models available to you. Firstly, we have the original Hand-Built Ebony Writer Pen and then we have the Hand-Built Brass Writer Pen and the Hand-Built Stainless Steel Writer Pen too.

Also, if you want to see how it all started, you can look at Nicholas Hemingway’s product launches through Kickstarter where all of his pens and pencils were initially launched.

Want to Know More About Metal Mechanical Pencils?

If you would like to expand your knowledge on metal mechanical pencils, we have a second post on just that! For more details, read the full post here.

All the best


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