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What’s new

a reverse chronological history of Leadholder

Dennis B. Smith, curator

page 8

pages   12 11 10 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1

2006 June 16 — 2007 January 21

Kimek 143
Added two examples of the Kimek 143 to the Drafting Leadholder Gallery.

Kimek 143
Added a box for the A.W. Faber Castell 9021 to the Drafting Leadholder Gallery, courtesy Allan Macdonald.

Pentel Graph Pencil PG2
Added a Pentel Graph Pencil PG2 to the Thin Lead Drafting Leadholder Gallery, courtesy Andrey Gordenko. This is the first 0.2 mm pencil in the Leadholder collection.

Pentel Graph Pencil PG2
Added a set of variously sized rotring Compass Pencils to the Drafting Leadholder Gallery.

Linex LS1000
Added a Linex lead pointer to the Lead Pointer Gallery. [Oh, hey. While I’m thinking about it... How do you spell “big whoop?”...]

A.W. Faber Castell Locktite 9400
A.W. Faber Castell Locktite 9400
A.W. Faber Castell Locktite 9400
Added three more examples of A.W. Faber Castell Locktites to the Drafting Leadholder Gallery. [... does “whoop” have an H after the W?]

Koh-I-Noor 5623
Added a Koh-I-Noor Deluxe Very-Fine 5623 to the Thin Lead Drafting Leadholder Gallery.

Koh-I-Noor unknown model
Added an unknown Koh-I-Noor model to the Thin Lead Drafting Leadholder Gallery.

rotring 300
Added a rotring 300 to the Thin Lead Drafting Leadholder Gallery.

rotring 400
Added a rotring 400 to the Thin Lead Drafting Leadholder Gallery.

The fourth major redesign of Leadholder is now complete. Every single one of the over 800 pages on Leadholder has been updated in one way or another. Many cross references have been added and refined. Many of the dates are now more accurate or at least more authoritatively vague.

The main body text has been adapted to a 600 pixel wide format to make reading easier when the browser’s window width is wide. This was a tradeoff because it destroys the user’s control over the width of the text blocks which I personally found useful when having two Leadholder windows open side by side for comparing items. But in the end, I think the new format will be an improvement in usability.

Each individual item entry now has an associated gray band with a URL linking directly to the page for easy bookmarking (just drag the link somewhere or right click it depending on your OS and browser). Also the new format is more flexible allowing for closely related items, for example flat lead holders and their associated flat leads which work only in those pencils, to be together on a page while also providing a link to both the leadholder thumbnail index and the lead thumbnail index. The gray bands also serve to clearly separate the various items grouped on a page. Additionally, the “specs” of each item have been expanded and standardized to provide quicker access to the information and details about an item.

Many new items have also been added and I’m too exhausted to enumerate them here so just look for the solid gray dots New next to the new items in the thumbnail indices.

In addition to the editing of content on virtually every page, every page has been renamed. I’ve been wanting to do this for years, but it messes with search engines’ ability to direct people to my site and any bookmarks people have saved to specific pages so I’ve put it off until now. The reason is that all the old page names had underscores in them. For example “lh-draft_staedtler_780-series.html” would have been the page name for the Staedtler 780 series of drafting leadholders. So what? I’ll goddamn tell you what. double-click on the “780” in the file name above. Standard text behavior dictates that “draft_staedtler_780” will be selected instead of just the 780. That shit has cost me years of my life by forcing me to carefully position the mouse before the seven and dragging precisely to the end of the zero when I needed to change a page name or link. Never again. I’ve replaced the underscores with dashes. All the page names now use underscores very sparingly and only when I’m likely to want to select the two terms separated by the underscore. In the past I used underscores as though they were spaces that could be used in URLs unlike real spaces. I swear, this used to be sensible, but it seems at some point underscores have come to mean something else. What? I don’t goddamn know. Retards who use ASCII text editors seem to think underscores are some geeky proxy for _italic_ type. Losers. So the short of it is: Google is going to be sending a lot of people to pages that no longer exist until their re-indexing of Leadholder is compete. There are ways to redirect these visitors to the renamed pages, but because every goddamn page has been renamed it’s just too much work, so screw it.

Staedtler 925 25-20 
Added a Japanese made Staedtler 925 25-20 to the Drafting Leadholder Gallery.

Tombow Mono 
Added a 1970s vintage Tombow Mono to the Drafting Leadholder Gallery.

Uchida 848-5000 
Added an Uchida Drawing Holder 848-5000 to the Drafting Leadholder Gallery.

Piper Sketcher 
Added a Piper Sketcher to the Non-Drafting Leadholder Gallery.

Tacro Tacombi 
Added a Tacro Tacombi crazy compass/pencil hybrid to the Drafting Leadholder Gallery.

I forgot to mention last time that I added a new section to Leadholder.com, The Art of the Leadholder. This section has such an awkward name because it encompasses artwork about leadholders, artwork of leadholders, and artwork made with leadholders. The section is very small right now, but I’ve got some great stuff to add one of these days.

Added the first round of information about the illustrator/designer Barry Jones who did work for Koh-I-Noor Rapidograph and rotring in the late 1980s to early 90s to the Art of the Leadholder Gallery:
rotring 600 brochure, concept rotring 600 brochure
Concept art and final printed brochure for rotring 600 writing (and drawing) instruments.

Added three catalogs to the Vintage Catalog Gallery:
Gordon Draftsmen's Supply Co. catalog 1948  Charles Bruning Co., 1957 catalog  Koh-I-Noor 1985 Catalog B
a 1948 Gordon Draftsmen’s Supply Co. catalog.
a 1957 Charles Bruning Co. catalog, courtesy Paul Hunt.
a 1985 Koh-I-Noor Rapidograph catalog.

Tru Point Automatic leadholder  Tru Point Technical leadholder
Added the Tru Point Automatic and Tru Point Technical to the Drafting Leadholder Gallery.

Eberhard Faber 612 kit 
Added a nifty slate board marker, the Eberhard Faber 612, to the Non-Drafting Leadholder Gallery.

Added several erasers to the Non-Drafting Leadholder Gallery:
Tombow Eraser
Tombow Eraser.
Weldon Roberts Jet Eraser
Weldon Roberts Jet Eraser.
Faber Castell 7095 eraser
Faber-Castell 7095 Eraser, courtesy Allan Macdonald.

It’s been a while since I posted the previous update but I’ve been adding things in the meantime and now that it’s time to actually enumerate them I’ve forgotten what most of them were, so I’ll just list those I do remember.

Hellerman 1963-64
Added a 1963–64 Hellerman Ltd. (UK) catalog to the Vintage Catalog Gallery, courtesy David Riches.

Koh-I-Noor 1098  Koh-I-Noor 1098
Added two Koh-I-Noor pencil extenders, 1098 and 1099 1/2, to the Wood Cased Drafting Pencil Gallery.

Venus Drawing LeadsVenus Drawing Leads
Venus Drawing LeadsVenus Drawing Leads
Reworked the Venus Lead page adding several styles of packages to the Drawing Lead Gallery.

Fedra Constant leads
Added a package of Fedra Constant leads to the Drawing Lead Gallery, courtesy Allan Macdonald.

A.W. Faber Castell TK 9400 box
A.W. Faber Castell TK 9400 box
Added a boxed example of an early plastic Faber-Castell TK 9400 to the Drafting Leadholder Gallery, courtesy Allan Macdonald.

Staedtler Mars Black Leads
Added an early package of Staedtler Mars leads to the Drawing Lead Gallery, courtesy Allan Macdonald.

Kimek Children's Set  Kimek Children's Set
Added a Kimek children’s set of coloring leadholders to the Non-Drafting Leadholder Gallery.

Kimek 151
Added a Kimek 151 to the Non-Drafting Leadholder Gallery.
Ofrex 546
Added an Ofrex 546 to the Non-Drafting Leadholder Gallery.

Ofrex Pencil Refills
Ofrex Pencil Refills
Added two types of Ofrex “Pencil Refills” to the Lead Gallery.

pushbutton incremental advance
Added a diagram of the Pushbutton Advance Mechanism to the Leadholder Mechanics page.
A.W. Faber Castell Locktite 9500
Added an A.W. Faber Castell Locktite 9500 with an different style of clip to the Drafting Leadholder Gallery.

Koh-I-Noor 5617 display box
Updated the Koh-I-Noor 5617 entry with a display box in the Drafting Leadholder Gallery.
Updated the Shop.

Scwan Stabilograph
Added a Schwan Stabilograph to the Thin Lead Drafting Leadholder Gallery.

Staedtler REG
Added a Staedtler REG to the Thin Lead Drafting Leadholder Gallery, courtesy Aram Wool.

Scwan Stabilograph
Added a Tacro 4438 to the Thin Lead Drafting Leadholder Gallery.

Pentel Graphgear 1000
Added a Pentel Graphgear 1000 to the Thin Lead Drafting Leadholder Gallery, courtesy Aram Wool.
I think this is the first time I’ve ever shared this sort of information with visitors to this site, and I don’t mean to make it a habit, but something in my server logs struck me today for the last complete month (June):

Microsoft Internet Explorer (IE) has dropped below a 60% share of my visitors and Firefox is now solidly over 20%. IE has been in decline for quite a while, but it has really taken a dive lately. A year ago it was probably about 80%.

IE
Firefox
Safari
Opera
Other
  59.7%
21.8%
13.6%
2.9%
2.0%

I hate to preach to the majority of my visitors as though they are doing something wrong, but If you are using Internet Explorer and you haven’t tried Firefox, you should. It’s much more secure, faster, standards compliant, and feature packed than the creaky old IE.

My personal favorite browser is Safari (Macintosh). Leadholder is gorgeous in Safari. Firefox still has a way to go with text rendering and IE is really a joke in the web world. And while I’m spewing this techie nonsense, I’d like to give a special welcome to the growing number of Mac users (now about 15% of my visitors). That’s what I use and what I’ve used since 1984 when the first Mac was introduced. Man that was a long time ago.
Updated the Shop several times since it opened – and again today.

Staedtler Micrograph
Added an early (1970s) Staedtler Micrograph to the Thin Lead Drafting Leadholder Gallery.
The Leadholder Shop is open for business!
I have introduced a new symbol to the Gallery thumbnail indexes, the “Historical Information” symbol: Dixon Metric Box. It appears next to gallery entries that include more than the usual dry descriptive facts. There are bits and pieces of historical comments and smart ass remarks sprinkled throughout the Leadholder gallery entries. This should make it a little easier to find them.

Staedtler Micrograph F 77019
Staedtler Micrograph F 77019
Added a Staedtler Micrograph F 77013 and 77015 to the Thin Lead Drafting Leadholder Gallery, courtesy Pedro Figueiras.

Staedtler Micrograph F 77019
Added a Staedtler Micrograph F 77019 to the Thin Lead Drafting Leadholder Gallery.

Staedtler Mars Lumograph Technico 1001 4H
Added an epically named Staedtler Mars Lumograph Technico 1001 4H to the Drafting Leadholder Gallery.

J.S. Staedtler Mars 1958 magazine ad
Added a wonderful J.S. Staedtler Mars 1958 magazine ad to the Wood Cased Drafting Pencil Gallery.

Caran d'Ache Museum Set
Added a Caran d’Ache Museum Artist Set & Fixpencil 44 to the Non-Drafting Leadholder Gallery.

Dixon Metric Box
Added a box of Dixon Metric Drawing Pencils to the Wood Cased Drafting Pencil Gallery.

Eberhard Faber Microtomic
Added an Eberhard Faber Microtomic with Eraser to the Wood Cased Drafting Pencil Gallery.

Eberhard Faber 331 Extender
Added another version of the Eberhard Faber “Van Dyke” 331 Pencil Extender to the Wood Cased Drafting Pencil Gallery.

Paramount Extender
Added Paramount Pencil Extender to the Wood Cased Drafting Pencil Gallery.

Milton Bradley Drawing Pencil
Added a Milton Bradley Drawing Pencil to the Wood Cased Drafting Pencil Gallery.

Matchless
Added two Matchless Drawing Pencils to the Wood Cased Drafting Pencil Gallery.

J.S. Staedtler Precision
Added a J.S. Staedtler “Precision” to the Wood Cased Drafting Pencil Gallery.

Eberhard Faber Mongol Drawing
Added a pack of circa 1960s Eberhard Faber Mongol Drawing Pencils to the Wood Cased Drafting Pencil Gallery.


What’s new

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