Best Mechanical Pencil for Sketching [Buying Guide for 2023]

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A mechanical pencil is the ultimate solution for both traditional artists and web designers. If you are a true art enthusiast, you must have experimented with versatile tools and a mechanical pencil is surely one of them. With the engineer-like limpidity, the best mechanical pencil for sketching can show you paths to whimsical artistry.

Only the best mechanical pencils are the answer to any creativity related to art. They are unique and highly approved because they do not require sharpening. So, there are reasons why mechanical pencils have a special place in an artist’s toolkit.

However, to direct you to the best ones we have come up with the best mechanical pencils for sketching. Give a minute look at our picks.

7 Best Mechanical Pencil for Sketching Reviews

The best mechanical pencils will always add some extras to your creativity. They come sharp with ergonomic features and they are erasable. Exceeding all the features and ergonomics of a wooden pencil, mechanical pencils are now one-of-a-kind.

1. rOtring 1904444 600 Mechanical Pencil

Our very first pick for the best mechanical pencil is this one from Rotring. Rotring has always been a famous and reputed name for excellent and well-built pencil designs. However, among all of its mechanical pencil collections, the Rotring 600 has managed to be hyped among the artists.

This is considered one of the best iconic technical pencils that are engineered for lifetime use. You will know why when you get to know some of its extraordinary features.


We have picked the 1904444 number model for the best mechanical pencil that takes 0.7mm and is made from brass and black in color. The design is solid and well-constructed. Moreover, this rOtring 600 mechanical pencil feels a bit weighty yet it is designed well-balanced. Hence, you won’t feel uncomfortable while holding it even for longer periods. It also comes with a strong metal clip.


This rOtring mechanical pencil comes with an iconic metal barrel design. The design is achieved to enhance its ergonomics. The mechanical pencil is featured with a hexagonal cross-section that doesn’t roll away when it is kept on any surface. Also, the feature offers a firm non-slip knurled grip.


As the entire Rotring mechanical pencil holds the 0.7mm lead precisely and firmly. Interestingly, the internal tube of this Rotring 600 contains a large number of spare leads. Moreover, ranging from 2B to 4H, a lead indicator is included nearly to the clip. Surely, this feature brings great help to your work.

Also, the lead guidance sleeve is fixed inside the pencil to resist the breakage of the leads. Again, for accurate ruler-based drawing, the feature allows you a proper view of the page.


According to the users’ experience, this Rotring 700 mechanical pencil is the right weapon to slay the artistry. With a five-star rating, the pencil is all over the internet. Students, artists, and even mathematicians have chosen this mechanical pencil for its outstanding writing performance.

What We Like:

  • Well-constructed with rOtring Pencil Technology.
  • Offers you a luxurious feel.
  • Provides ergonomic grip.
  • Offers 2-years of limited guarantee.

What We Don’t Like:

  • Expensive.
  • The tip is easily breakable.

Also Read: Is Mechanical Pencil Lead Toxic?

2. Uni Core Keeps Sharp Mechanical Pencil (M510171P.43)

After Rotring 600, the Uni Kuru Toga Roulette is competitively the best pencil for sketching. This mechanical pencil is unique and we have chosen the roulette M510171P.43 with 0.5mm. Though the Kuru Toga line of mechanical pencils is serving for years yet you cannot simply overlook them. Let’s get to the features of our picked one.


Unlike the regular Kuru Toga, this Uni Core Keeps Sharp Mechanical Pencil is slimmer, sleeker, and most importantly, it comes with a knurled grip. with a gun metallic body, this mechanical pencil looks elegant. Also, it is evenly balanced with weight and ideal diameter.

The building material of this Uni Kuru Toga mechanical pencil has made it a solid piece. Again, it is equipped with a strong clip that is also removable. Overall, with everything upgraded, this mechanical pencil is externally well-designed.


As we mentioned before, this Uni Core mechanical pencil is featured with the most wanted knurled grip. This feature increases the stability when working with it for a long time. Moreover, you will feel the metal cool grip that offers relaxation to your fingers. Also, it has a small round window that shows the lead mechanism of the pencil.


Uniquely, thismechanical pencil comes with a lead rotation mechanism like the kuru toga pipe slide. This is till now the most famous feature. The lead keeps rotating evenly each time you lift the pencil and its lead off the page. The system allows you to write or draw with the same perfectly sharped and rounded pencil lead.

Also, it decreases sharp angled edges while writing. Hence, this constantly rotating Kuru Toga pipe slide mechanism ensures a consistent and balanced line width.


You can already predict how this mechanical pencil might perform by reading its lead feature. Yes, many users of this Kuru Toga pencil have fallen for its rotating mechanism. With the pencil, your lines can never go wrong. Overall, this mechanical pencil and its features are not gimmicks, it serves what it is meant for.

What We Like:

  • Made with high-quality features.
  • Provides knurled grip.
  • Comes with a unique lead rotation mechanism.
  • Lead always remains the same.

What We Don’t Like:

  • The body is not fully made of metal.

Next Read: Want to Buy a Mid Range Fountain Pen?

3. Pentel Graph Gear 1000 Mechanical Drafting Pencil 0.7mm Blue (PG1017)

Now, showcasing the Pentel Graph Gear 1000, the best mechanical pencils for architects and draftsmen out there. This pencil is arguably one of the best sketching pencils as it meets the dreams of designers. However, the PG1017 model has made the place because of some reasons and they are given below.


Being one of the best automatic drafting pencils, Pentel Graph Gear is a well-built mechanical pencil for average users. Unlike the Pentel 500, this one comes with versatile upgrades and designs. You can say it by seeing its beautiful satin silver finish. the barrel of the pencil is made of aluminum and looks simple yet pretty.

However, the back half of this mechanical pencil has a cylindrical shape. It is also printed with the necessary information regarding the pencil. It also has a hinged clip with spring and well-polished edges. Overall, with a balanced design, this Pentel 1000 is heftier than the previous ones of its line.


This Pentel Graph Gear 1000 comes with a remarkable grip design. The grip section of this mechanical pencil is knurled. It is mainly made of chiseled metal that is inlaid with soft pads. Hence, it offers a soft rubber texture that adds comfort while drafting.

There you will see gel-like spots that are featured to cushion your fingertips for lengthy tasks. Also, this feature is barely noticeable.


The Pentel PG1017 Graph Gear 1000 comes with a 0.7mm blue lead. This mechanical pencil has a lead indicator that is shown by a viewing window on the pencil body. The indicator runs from 2B to 2H. It also shows a blank spot if you use a different lead.


This mechanical pencil comes with a retractable tip. By pressing the clip and end cap the pencil is retracted and extended respectively. In both cases, the actions offer satisfying and solid clicks. Hence, all of its locking and clicking mechanism works effectively and smoothly.

Above all, this is a multi-purpose mechanical pencil ideal for writing, sketching, or designing.

What We Like:

  • Multifunctional mechanical pencil.
  • Leads are easy and quick to refill.
  • Rubberized grip for increased comfort.
  • Solid retractable mechanism.

What We Don’t Like:

  • The hardness indicator is not up to the mark.

Important Read: Using a Mechanical Pencil on the SAT

4. Pilot Color Eno 0.7mm Automatic Mechanical Pencil 8 Color Set

Every enthusiast must have a Pilot pen in their collection. Among many of its collections, the Pilot Color Eno Automatic Mechanical pencils are the best sketch pencils. It is a set of 8 pencils with wider ranges of colors and versatility. The pencils are their features will surely exceed all your expectations. Let’s get to the features.


The Pilot Color Eno Automatic Mechanical Pencils are pretty outside. Though the barrel of the pencils is made of plastic yet it matches with the lead color. This feature is helpful for fast picking of the required pencils. Moreover, the pencils are balanced and lightweight at the same time. But, being lightweight, the Color Eno does not feel cheap in hands.

Also, the Pilot Color Eno mechanical pencils come with a bit wider shape than many other mechanical drafting pencils. Yet, it is not uncomfortably featured. Overall, with the plastic pencils, Pilot has made sketching dynamically easier.


The pencils also come with easy grips. The grip section is transparently rubberized. Also, it is textured well so that it becomes resistant to slip. Hence, you get a comfortable and convenient grip for a long time working process.


This Color Eno mechanical pencil set from Pilot comes with a 0.7mm diameter lead. So, you can easily get fine lines with the pencils. These mechanical pencils of Color Eno have soft leads and only the Pilot can withstand them. However, pressing them hard might result in snapping. If any lead is unexpectedly broken, you can see it from its transparent front.


To talk about the performance, this Color Eno Automatic Mechanical Pencil Set provides very pale colors compared to other wooden colored pencils. The colors also fade hence you will find low lightfastness. Again, some of the leads are too scratchy and hard especially the yellow ones. However, the colors are highly visible on black pages.

So, you will get a so-so performance from this set. But its durability and precision will bring you justice to your investment.

What We Like:

  • Comes in multiple erasable colors.
  • The leads don’t slip and durable.
  • The plastic body is not annoying.
  • Affordable.

What We Don’t Like:

  • Each pencil carries only two leads.
  • Overly tight strokes.

Keep Reading: These Ballpoint Pens Can Make Your Drawing the Best

5. Mr. Pen Mechanical Pencil Set with Lead and Eraser Refills

Offering all in one, Mr. Pen Mechanical Pencil Set is also on the list of the best mechanical pencil. The set includes a number of total 5 pencils of different colors. This set is claimed to be the ultimate solution of not only sketching but also drafting, drawing, architecture, illustrations, and all. Well, the acclamation is not wrong if you know the features of the pencils.


With the color-coded design, the Mr. Pen mechanical pencils come with the desired housing. The pencils offer a lightweight solid feel. The barrel of the pencils is made of high-quality material. The body is partially made of plastic. However, they have metal tips except the 2mm one that make the pencils highly durable. The 2mm pencil might feel cheap in hands compared to others.

Nonetheless, the tip does not tend to flex easily even after pressurizing at a degree of 45 to the stencil edge. Also, the internals of the pencils is pretty solid as well. Each pencil also comes with a labeled barrel indicating the lead sizes for convenient use. Overall, the design is thoughtful.


Mr. Pen mechanical pencils come with a textured plastic grip. There isn’t any extra built-in feature for the grip yet the pencils offer a comfortable grip. however, unlike the other four Mr. Pen mechanical pencils, the 2mm pencil offers a triangular sort of grip.

Overall, the pencils offer a latex-free non-slip soft grip for less fatigue and comfortable writing.


This mechanical pencil set comes with multiple lead options. The pencils have different lead diameters like 0.3, 0.5, 0.7, 0.9, and 2mm. Surprisingly, the set also includes a pack of lead refills for each Mr. Pen mechanical pencil. Again, the set provides a built-in sharpener for the 2mm leads.

Again, the lead sleeves that the pencils offer are solidly equipped without any wobble.


This mechanical pencil set of Mr. Pen is one of the cheapest yet the best pencil sets. According to the price range, the performance is obviously not like a pro but a great solution for beginners. The pencil comes with an extra clicky mechanism. Still the clips, tips, leads, and eraser covers all of its downsides.

What We Like:

  • Color-coded pencils with multi-functionality.
  • Comes with wider lead options.
  • 4mm tip ideal for any use.
  • Inexpensive.

What We Don’t Like:

  • The quality is skeptical.

6. Zebra 54012 Stainless Steel Mechanical Pencil

Now coming to one of the best releases from Zebra, the 54012 Mechanical Pencil! This is truly one of the best pencils for sketching especially for jot down notes or tasks and ideas related to math problems. It comes with a pack of two. The Zebra 54012 Mechanical Pencil belongs to its steel line collection and comes with some standard features.


The two pencils come with stainless steel construction. The steel material of the mechanical pencils makes them look sleek and elegant. Moreover, the material also provides durability making the pencil sturdy and more sophisticated. The Zebra mechanical pencils with stainless steel barrel have a narrow shape. Also, the M-301 is lightweight and also balanced.

With a strong metal clip, the mechanical pencil is safe to carry and use anywhere. Also, the pencils are shorter in length so they can be kept in the pocket. Again, the pencils come with tip features to elevate your sketching skill.


The Zebra 54012 M-301 comes with a non-slip black grip. The grip is textured and it feels comfortable. It also increases stability while working with it.


The Zebra mechanical pencils offer a 0.5mm standard lead size. This diameter lead provides enjoyable and precise writing. Additionally, the pencil provides effortless refilling of the leads with the standard lead diameters of 0.7mm and 0.5mm. Also, a refillable eraser is included in this set.


With an extremely affordable price range, you get to use something more than plastic. First of all, the mechanic pencils are made of quality materials and secondly, they have a standard lead diameter that writes smoothly and well. The users of the Zebra mechanical pencil have found it excellent for drawing. Moreover, they are fantastically durable.

Overall, the Zebra 54012 is a mechanical pencil that is ready to slay right out of the box.

What We Like:

  • High-quality stainless steel building.
  • Secure metal clip and tip.
  • Texted ergonomic grip.
  • Easy lead refill.

What We Don’t Like:

  • The eraser is very small.

7. Nicpro 6PCS Art Mechanical Pencils Set

Our last pick but not least is the Nicpro Art Mechanical Pencils Set. The set includes a total of 6 pieces of pencils with versatile designs and leads. This mechanical pencil set is hyped because of its excellent value for money. With an extra amount of everything, the Nicpro mechanical pencils are a great deal to have.


As we said, the pencil set includes 6 pieces of pencils. Hence, you see a healthy array of pencils. However, three of the pencils are metal drafting pencils and the other three are graphite lead holders. These metal mechanical pencils are light but sturdy. Nonetheless, the drafting pencils are a bit different than the graphite ones.

All the pencils offer ideal weight balance. Also, all of them have a metal clip to keep in the pocket and a retractable tip that provides satisfying clicks.


All of the pencils deliver a non-slip convenient grip. The drafting pencils come with a black textured grip. On the contrary, the graphite holder ones come with a silver textured grip. Hence, for this comfortable grip, the Nicpro mechanical pencil set is ideal for adults, children, or beginners.


Surprisingly, this mechanical pencil set from Nicpro offers a wider array of leads. 3 of the drafting pencils come with 0.5, 0.7, and 0.9mm lead diameters. The other three pencils hold graphite leads of 2mm.

Additionally, the set includes a total of 12 packs of extra lead refills. 24 refills for each of the 0.9, 0.7, and 0.5mm and other 12 refills for each 2B, HB, and 2H. Again, the set contains three erasers in it.


With all its extra tools, the Nicpro Art Mechanical Pencil set also performs very well. Surely, its performance is not the best but certainly one of the best. The whole set is ideal for sketching, drawing, drafting, writing, and all. The 2.0mm graphite mechanical pencil also includes a sharpener in its cap which makes it more efficient for work.

Overall, with versatile options for lead sizes and pencil options, this Nicpro set is fun to use.

What We Like:

  • Built with high-quality metal.
  • Comes with various lead options.
  • Includes 12 refill lead refills and 3 erasers.
  • Inexpensive.

What We Don’t Like:

  • The pencils are a little thin.

How to Choose the Right Mechanical Pencil for Sketching?

All mechanical pencils might have similar exterior features but they differ a lot in quality, shape, style, and more. Hence, there are some essential features you need to keep in your head while buying the best mechanical pencil.

Body Material

There are thousands of mechanical pencils made of mass-produced plastic to high-quality metal. However, according to the material, the manufacturers set prices in them. However, mechanical pencil bodies made of stainless steel and metal tend to be more durable and long-lasting.

On the contrary, there also exist some of the best plastic-made mechanical pencils that do not feel cheap on hands. These pencils are suitable for students of elementary schools.

Accurate Lead Size

This is one of the challenging points to be acquired when to buy the best one. However, there are mostly four common sizes of leads that are available in the market. They are 0.3, 0.5, 0.7, and 0.9mm diameter. However, each of the sizes serves different purposes. Like the one with a 0.3mm diameter is best for fine writing and detailed drawing.

The 0.5mm and 0.7mm are suitable for writing, drawing, or non-detailed work. Lastly, the 0.9mm lead is famous for its sketching purpose.

Lead Hardness

You need to consider lead hardness and know some facts about it.

  • Leads that are soft will create darker colors but are prone to smudge and break if they are pressurized.
  • The softness of the lead is expressed as ‘B’ and the lead becomes softer when the number is higher.
  • Similarly, hardness is expressed as ‘H’.  Again, the leads become harder when the number is also higher.
  • Nonetheless, there are also leads expressed as ‘HB’ and ‘F’ that lie in the middle.

So, choose the one that will meet your need.

Ergonomic Grip

This is a very important point you shouldn’t overlook. If you are a workaholic and hold a pencil for longer periods you must ensure the grip is comfortable and resistant to slip. Today’s best mechanical pencils provide the best grip with textured feeling and fatigue-free properties.

Convenient Tip Feature

There are two types of tips we see in mechanical pencils.

  • Fixed Tip: Mechanical pencils with fixed tips are way stable and a great help for detailed work. Hence, many prefer this feature to have a consistent workpiece.
  • Retractable Tip: Today’s best mechanical pencils are equipped with a retractable feature. It is because the feature is convenient for carrying from one place to other in your pocket. Also, you can go with them without a cap.

So, know which one will suit your work and convenience more and then go for any one of them.

Sketching with a mechanical pencil.

What is the difference between drawing and sketching?

There are distinct differences between drawing and sketching. Drawing is like making marks on a page or surface while sketching defines a more finished work of an art piece. Again, a finished drawing requires a proper line and detail of the art to define it more.

On the other hand, sketching is also an art but it is a bit less formal. They are usually created with quick strokes and marks. Also, they lack many details that are required in a finished drawing.

What is the best sketching mechanical pencil?

There are many mechanical pencils available both on the market and the internet. But, only the best one can bring you the exact result you want for your art. Hence, according to performance, feature, lead size, and mechanism we highly recommend the 1904444 number model of rOtring 600.

This is the best mechanical pencil till now with a lead diameter of 0.7mm.

What drawing pencil is recommended for sketching and why?

There are many options for drawing pencils that are recommended for sketching. However, all the pencils come with versatile lead hardness or softness parameters. Initially, it is suggested to use 2B or 3B pencils for sketching. B indicates the softness and the number indicates the intensity of darkness it will provide.

Gradually, you can go for a 6B or 9B pencil for way darker and deeper tones for sketching purposes. So, the softer grades drawing pencil will enable a great result for sketching.

What are the 3 types of pencil?

There are many types of pencils but only three of the types are exceptional and mostly granted. They are given below.

1. Graphite pencil

This is one of the most common pencils that are used by everyone in their initial stage. This pencil is mostly used for drawing and writing.

2. Charcoal Pencil

Charcoal pencils are unique and darker but not that versatile. They can create rough lines. However, they also differ from quality to quality.

3. Mechanical Pencil

This pencil is the most popular option in today’s generation. With numerous designs and features, a mechanical pencil is the go-to solution for every artist. Their biggest benefit is that they don’t need to be sharpened.

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