This is officially Episode 2 in my series “Let us share my mechanical pencils-related psychological issues with the community”, and I apologise in advance, as I’m afraid this might be a tough one. Next time, I promise, I’ll just share fancy pictures of my beloved fineliners.
So, the premise: many a moon ago, when the pencil market on Ebay was on the rise, but on a much smaller scale than today, and it was still possible to buy great items at a reasonable price, I was systematically browsing the results pages on the site in search of my personal holy grails (about which I’ll annoy you all elsewhere), when I stumbled upon a “buy it now” listing that left me more than perplexed.
I was actually looking for a Pentel PG4 — I had just learned about the existence of the 0.4mm diameter, and wanted to find a nice specimen for my collection — but the listing was for a “Pentel PG6”, i.e. something I had never known existed.
I can hear you already: maybe it was just a misprint in the title of the listing! Stop bothering us with such nonsense. This is certainly possible, and I myself have bought more than a few items with a significant discount thanks to the fact that the seller failed at spelling the name of the object correctly, and thus did not attract the great sharks.
The listing, however, stated and repeated that the pencil worked with 0.6mm lead, and the picture unequivocally showed the body of a PG-type pencil, with a white imprint reading (at least to my knowledge and understanding) “0.6 mm” or “0.6 m/m”. It was like an ordinary Pentel PG-something, only happening to work with an unusual lead size. The coloured plastic ring of the lead indicator also had an unusual hue: it was not green, nor blue, nor red; maybe closer to a pink (PG2-like?), but neither distinctive, nor particularly anonymous.
Besides, the price was higher than one typically associated with the PG5 or PG7, and was instead more in the range of that for a PG4, a PG2, or a PMG in 0.3 (still, almost half of what I should pay today for such an item).
Now, I know that 0.6mm lead does exist (I saw once an auction for a box of 0.6mm lead magazines sporting the Leaning Tower of Pisa [wtf?!] on the lid, and it ended with skyrocketing bids), and there are indeed pencils working with 0.6 lead, but a Pentel PG6? Is that a thing?
On the Pentel Handbook I dowloaded as per your resources section, I could not find any trace of this pencil: no PG6, and no PG9 either, if I remember correctly (the range goes from 0.2mm to 0.7mm), and given the authoritative sources we have here, I ended up thinking that either I saw a scam listing for a fake pencil, or my brain just tricked me with a vivd yet false memory, possibly to spice up the recollections of an otherwise uneventful day.
So, please help me settle the question: am I progressively getting pencil-crazier and crazier? Did I spot a splinter of another reality — where 0.6mm lead is the standard, and 0.5 is considered an abomination — interwoven in my Ebay search results? Did I just meet a PG5 with blurred pictures and a silly seller unable to properly identify his lead sizes? Was it all a dream, perchance?
[Obviously, I did not buy the pencil: the listing closed too quickly, the price was too high for my budget at the time, and I was not a serious collector, just an enthusiast without sufficient knowledge. I could not even save the page, or download the pictures, because I was too naïve to save an evidence. That missed call is one of my grand regrets, pencil-wise, and it still itches my brain today.]