Review – PaperMate “Write Bros” Mechanical Pencils (48 pack)

PaperMate isn’t exactly known for making the most high quality products in the world. But for the most part they do make products that get the job done in an inexpensive and readily available way. And that philosophy is very apparent in the 48 pack of “Write Bros” mechanical pencils, which generally sells for as little as a 2 pack of more well-regarded pencils. Are these the perfect solution for someone looking to supply a group on the cheap/keep losing their own, or are they too fragile to be worth it?

The bodies are similar in size to a normal wooden pencil, but a bit shorter at just over 6”. Molded in a slightly pearlescent plastic and one of 5 average colors, they have a ribbed grip section for the last inch and a half of the barrel, followed by a cheap-looking frosted plastic cone that is screwed onto the end and from which protrudes a small plastic “lead-pipe” and lead from inside that. Near the back of the pencil, there is an exposed click-advance mechanism with an integrated pocket clip that moves with activation. On top of that is a small white eraser, which can be removed to expose the lead chamber and allow refilling. Oddly enough at this price point, the item can be further disassembled by unscrewing the frosted cone on the front, at which point the entire advance mechanism will essentially fall out of the back of the barrel. There is nothing useful that can be done from this point, but it is interesting to look at.

Performance is so-so to average. The 7mm HB lead is what you would expect at the price, a bit scratchy and softer than advertised (prone to breaking). The clip technically does its job but I wouldn’t count on it, and the plastic is brittle enough that it would easily snap. As far as erasing goes, the eraser is superb, but it is a small size and virtually vanishes when put to its task. The feeling of the click mechanism is unsatisfying but inoffensive in any way other than it feels like it will quickly break.

Basically you get what you pay for, which in this case is not much. Even PaperMate didn’t bother putting a name on these pencils (I call them “Write Bros” because that’s what’s on the box and online, but the items themselves only say “Paper:Mate”, and “0.7mm”). But there isn’t much terribly wrong with them. If they are intended to be essentially “disposable” mechanical pencils, they succeed. Each has two leads (though many of mine were broken and thus less useable) and an eraser, enough to be useful, but little enough that the poor and brittle construction will be able to survive that use. They don’t seem to be meant to be refilled, as they aren’t worth the trouble, and being used much more would likely result in broken clips and eventually mechanisms (but it is a possibility for a little bit). And putting aside environmental or frugality concerns they are an inexpensive and relatively comfortable way to provide functional pencils to a lot of people, or many pencils to one particularly careless person.

Table Topics Chit Chat 61 #121-122


  1. If you could name the street that you live on what would you call it?
  2. What’s your favorite summer memory?

ANSWERS By: Austin Smith

  1. Turn back: Alligators!
  2. The 6 or so where I bowled and played pool with friends (not like an actual pool with water I hate those). Issss all I got there. I didn’t do much over the summers.


Table Topics Family 27 #55-54


1. What’s your favorite summertime activity?

2. Have you ever stuck up for someone when they needed help?

ANSWERS By: Austin Smith

1. I don’t really have any exclusively summertime actives that I enjoy doing. But I live in Texas so it might as well be summer all of the time.

2. I’m sure I have, but I don’t remember any specific times. And I’m sure that if I could I’d find an equal number of time when I should’ve but didn’t.

Speak Your Mind 198 #986-990


1. Do you think life was less fulfilling in the days before nation-wide newspapers were available?

2. What are you going to do this (next) summer?

3. Did you like Teddy Bears when you were a child?

4. Why do you think Indians did not use guns to hunt?

5. What is the most interesting thing you learned in school this week?

ANSWERS By: Austin Smith

1. Again it depends on what fulfilling means to you, but I would say no.

2. I will be moving and broadening my company.

3. Yes, I had a few.

4. Because they did not have the technology to do so, or they didn’t adapt their hunting techniques when guns were brought over.

5. I am no longer in school.

Speak Your Mind 8 #36-40


1. What do you remember about kindergarden?

2. Do you like white carpet?

3. Do you have any older sisters?

4. Are you good at saving money?

5. Do you like winter or summer best?

ANSWERS By: Austin Smith

1. I remember I was five years old.

2. No, I don’t like carpet period, I like hard floors.

3. Yes, I have two older sisters.

4. Depends on what I want at the moment, and how much is saving, but I would say generally; yes.

5. I prefer the winter because I can more easily regulate my temperature. I can be from cold to hot, where as the summer I just seem hot.