Mechanical Pencil Vs Wooden Pencil – Which One to Pick?

Once upon a time, we had the only option for a pencil that is a wooden pencil. But now, when we have mechanical pencils, students and mostly the art enthusiasts are confused about which one to choose between mechanical pencil vs wooden pencil.

Certainly, both types have different advantages and disadvantages yet, one stands the top position in the case of both drawing and writing. Even many design professionals get confused about a mechanical pencil and a wooden pencil. Only the appropriate decision can make your art more precise and writing more accurate.

Hopefully, reading this article you will get an absolute idea about both the mechanical and wooden pencil and you will be able to make the proper pick while choosing one.

Mechanical Pencil Vs Wooden Pencil

Both pencils are good but they are made differently and designed to fulfill different needs. Let’s dive into the below discussion and get a comprehensible idea.

Wooden Pencil

A whole wooden pencil has different materials. Most of them include graphite, paint, wood, metal, and rubber. Generally, softwood is used to make a pencil that is gained from coniferous trees. As these pencils have graphite, we can see the color intensity and hardness of the graphite.

The properties of the graphite seem pretty much distinctive in a wooden pencil. It comes with several classifications as well. If the pencil comes with B specification then it indicates the ‘blackness’ of the graphite. In the same way, H, HB, and F indicate the Hardness, intermediated between hardness and blackness, and fine or thinness of the graphite respectively.

All the indications also come with different number like 2B, 3B, 5B, 2H, 5H, 6H, and more. The greater the number, the more distinctive the properties of the pencil will be. For example, the 9B pencil comes with way blackish and softer texture than a B or 2B pencil.

In the same way, a 9H pencil comes with way grayish and harder than an H or 2H pencil. In school, we mostly use 2B and HB pencils. Because of the intermediate hardness and color, the 2B and HB pencils are considered suitable if you are not up to pick any mechanical ones.

Mechanical Pencil

A mechanical pencil comes with some advanced features. Mechanical pencils are classified according to the graphite thickness. The thinnest graphite you will find in a mechanical pencil is about up to 0.2mm and the thickest one comes with a diameter of 0.9mm.

The mechanical pencils are way practical. The thickness or diameter of the nib of a mechanical pencil always remains the same. With a fine and clean stroke, these pencils are manufactured. For quick and neat writing, the nibs are kept in a constant width in the pencils.

For technical drawing and fine art drawing purposes, mechanical pencils help a lot. With the various graphite diameters, you can use a mechanical pencil. With the advanced designs, these pencils are produced for longer durability. And you can also fix mechanical pencils easily.

Advantages of a Wooden Pencil

  • Wooden pencils are considered the standard ones for writing.
  • For the recognition from a computer, marks from the wooden pencils can easily be found by the computer.
  • The pencils come in different categories, classifications, and distinctions.
  • Different graphite can be used to draw more artistic design.
  • Wooden pencils are found in any stationary.
  • The pencils are inexpensive and easily affordable.
  • For everyday use, they are a good option.

Disadvantages of a Wooden Pencil

Brittleness: A very common complaint of a wooden pencil is its fragility. As the pencils are made of softwood, they are most likely to be broken easily. The pencils also get warped very often because of the temperature and extended use.

Short lifespan: As the wooden pencils require a sharpener for their sharpening and for the frequent sharpening, the lifespan becomes short of the pencils. Very soon the graphite comes to the end and then it gets impossible to hold the small pencil and write with it.

Require extra sharpener: To keep a wooden pencil sharp, a sharpener is always required. You will always have to carry an extra sharpener while carrying a wooden pencil. Sometimes, the sharpeners cost high which is an obstacle to write fluently.

Advantages of a Mechanical Pencil

  • Mechanical pencils are strong and not fragile at all.
  • The pencils are highly durable and can be used for a long period.
  • The replacing process of the leads in mechanical pencils is easy.
  • The pencils are clickable and with only one click you can get a new lead to write.
  • The width of the graphite in a mechanical pencil is constant.
  • Does not require a sharpener for the sharpening. In fact, there is no need to sharpen.
  • For quick and fluent writing the pencils are suitable.

Disadvantages of a Mechanical Pencil

Fragile lead: The mechanical pencils come with fragile lead. Students from lower classes find it difficult to write with mechanical pencils because of the breakable lead. The leads are likely to be broken with almost zero pressure.

Require extra leads: The pencils always require extra leads on hand for the purpose of refilling it as needed. If you somehow forget to keep some extra, your writing may fail.

Image by Tafilah Yusof from Pixabay

Which One to Pick?

Both pencils are considered the best writing tools. Yet, your preference and needs come first. Depending on the work performed, you should choose a mechanical pencil vs wooden pencil for drawing and writing.

To know if the pencils are suitable for drawing or not, there are some things to look through. To draw more artistic design, the woody graphite pencils will offer you different graphite selections according to the need of your art. For the most expected shading, textures, effects, and light you can have wooden pencils.

Yet, mechanical pencils are preferred first in most of the cases. With only a little click a mechanical pencil will serve you for a lifetime. Again, as we said before, the technical drawing, always goes with the mechanical ones.


From our childhood, we are given the options between wooden pencils and mechanical pencils. So, we are very familiar with this topic from the early days of our life. And now we also know which one we should go for. Whether a wooden pencil or a mechanical pencil, both of them serve purposes differently and come as great writing and drawing instrument.

Try both mechanical pencil vs wooden pencil for writing and test them and know which one is convenient enough and meets your needs perfectly. It’s all up to you. If you are a true art enthusiast, then having both the type of pencils will be a great addition to your art utensils.