Not Any Old Faber Will Do

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In a previous post I mentioned that there are minute differences in dimension found between the flat cedar pencil refills manufactured by Fabers Eberhard, Johann, and Lothar. So there’s no guarantee things will fit properly just because the holder and the pencil have the name “Faber” on them.

I was told that this box of Eberhard Faber flat pencils was found in the back room of a mom-and-pop general store that was closing its doors—apparently it had been around in one form or another for some 100 years. On the box there is an indication of which holders the pencils are compatible with, and it also mentions that they are finished in yellow. However, upon opening it:

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If I’m not mistaken these pencils are pre-Castell, meaning, that they were made prior to 1905/6. I don’t know for certain however if they may have continued to manufacture blacklead pencils with just “A.W. Faber” printed on them alongside the new Castell range for a time. Even if they did, these pencils are quite old.

There could be several explanations for how some A.W. Faber pencils found there way into an Eberhard Faber box: it could have been something as simple as a store employee needing an empty box to put these in; they could have been the store owner’s personal pencils, etc. But since Eberhard Faber sold A.W. Faber products up until the late 1800s in the U.S., I don’t think it’s impossible that some products could have been mixed, combined, or substituted.

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But if Eberhard Faber did in fact offer A.W. Faber flat pencils as refills for their own holders, it means that the holders’ dimensions would had to have been compatible. Perhaps there was a time when the sizes were closer to being universal.

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Or perhaps someone just needed an empty box 70+ years ago.

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3 Responses to Not Any Old Faber Will Do

  1. Betsy Eisner says:

    I love your entries!
    Thank you so much for the luscious photos and the information that you provide!

    Like

  2. memm says:

    Absolutely beautiful!!
    …especially the Castell version.
    Thanks for showing us these treasures.

    Like

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