How to Make Charcoal Pencils

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Introduction: How to Make Charcoal Pencils

Don't want to pay for expensive charcoal pencils?
Learn how to make your own with a cheap, easy way.
These pencils in my opinion are as good as the ones you buy.

Step 1: Build a Fire

Now you need to build a fire.
1. Take some tinder and light it,
2. Put small pieces of wood on the lit tinder.
3.Gradually add bigger pieces of wood.
4.Wait for the fire to build up.

Your fire is made =).

Step 2: Wrap and Cook

1. Find some sticks that aren't too thin, they have to be thick enough.

2. Wrap the sticks in aluminium foil.

3. Place wrapped sticks in fire.

4. Wait about 20 minutes then find your wrapped sticks and just observe them...LEAVE IN FIRE.

5. You will notice gasses coming outof the foil..tere will be a lot of smoke coming out of the foil and some flames.

6. Observe the sticks until no more fllames and nearly no smoke is coming out of the foil.

7. Gently and carefully remove the foil from the fire and place on any surface.

8. Wait a couple of minutes for it to cool then remove carefully the "cooked" sticks (charcoal) from the foil.

9. (Optional) wrap the charcoal sticks in paper but leave some of the charcoal sticking out then tape the paper (if you don't want to get your hands all black when using the charcoal)

10. Use and enjoy your virtually free charcoal pencils.

(My pencil just looks like a black block wrapped in kleenek...but it goes really well and sorry for crappy image quality.)

(Have Fun!)

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    67 Comments

    0
    pudicobar
    pudicobar

    13 years ago on Step 2

    i was told that the best pencils come from grape vines... i guess if you wrap the charcoal with a pice of cloth and epoxy / polyester resin (fiberglass stuff) you can make a fairly hard and decent pencil, sharpenable too, with those big mouthed sharpeners.

    0
    GlueyMcGee
    GlueyMcGee

    Reply 13 years ago on Step 2

    hmm...i didn't know that...it would probably works (i didnt know that the best pencils came frome grape vines)

    0
    pudicobar
    pudicobar

    Reply 13 years ago on Step 2

    I'm not very sure of this too, but my guess is that any decent hardwood will make good pencils, like the stuff you guys have in America, like oak, osage, redwood, mulberry, apple, cherry etc etc etc... :D Hey, try the epoxy/resin thing and tell us if that works!

    0
    GlueyMcGee
    GlueyMcGee

    Reply 13 years ago on Step 2

    hardwood does make the best pencils (maybe apart from grape vines)...i probably wont try the epoxy/resin thing cus...well, 1: i don't know where to fand these and 2: thats pretty much it. 3: its winter (wel...officially its winter on december 21st but theres already a foot of snow here so i say its winter :)) now so i can't go biking long distances to get some.

    0
    pudicobar
    pudicobar

    Reply 13 years ago on Step 2

    Keep it as homework, once the snow melts ;-) However, the epoxy resin you can get even at wal mart (look at tool/paint department) you'll need araldite stuff, like those mix and apply. The polyester resin is sold at paint stores, specially car body work ones and also at marinas, cause many boats are actually made and repaired with it. Looks like you're a handy young man, so I strongly suggest you learn how to work these materials, even with no relation to your pencils, cause you can make lots of things out of epoxy and resin, ok? Take care however, and I don't know about the resin, where you live, but they won't sell it for minors here, cause sadly many smell the stuff as a drug... :-(

    0
    Frost5541
    Frost5541

    Reply 5 years ago

    XDDDDD smell that stuff?

    0
    GlueyMcGee
    GlueyMcGee

    Reply 13 years ago on Step 2

    smell it as a drug?! what people will do to get high....thats sad..anyways..i'll keep it in mind and i'll go check into it :)(I'll also check what i can do with epoxy and resin :D) thanks

    0
    pudicobar
    pudicobar

    Reply 13 years ago on Step 2

    You wouldnt believe what these guys do!!! :-( From time to time i see people like amy winehouse in the courts (like yesterday i was appointed attorney to a 15-yr boy who was into marijuana smoking, cocaine traffic plus armed robbery). Poverty is sometimes a cause of this, but what a way of losing his youth, behind the bars.... Damn it, sad but true... :-( What a world!

    0
    sharlston
    sharlston

    Reply 13 years ago on Introduction

    you need polyester stuff to make and mold things the araldite stuff comes in a syringe dosent it?

    0
    pudicobar
    pudicobar

    Reply 13 years ago on Introduction

    I'm not sure if that is possible, just an hypothesis... like if you use that resin intended for fiberglass, you can make nice stuff just using cloth and 'painting' it with the resin. Once I made a wheel for my sister's travel pack using a pop bottle cap, sand and epoxy (araldite), just mixing the resin with sand and filling the cap... It was about 3 years and the wheel is still spinning...lol My guess for the pencil was wrapping a charcoal pencil with cloth then paint it with the glue (any sort of may work). Do your experiments and show us..

    0
    sharlston
    sharlston

    Reply 13 years ago on Introduction

    well i have a ployester resin kit that sets in molds really clear like glass

    0
    Frost5541
    Frost5541

    5 years ago

    ii think this is what they use.

    0
    Feaf
    Feaf

    10 years ago on Step 2

    Aluminium foil costs a lot nowadays and is not always reliable I would suggest a paint can with a few holes for venting as a better solution and the steps are a little different.
    1.) clean out a paint can and poke 4-6 holes in the lid(More if you wish)
    2.) place in preferred wood.
    3.) place in a fire(The paint can is better for making more charcoal as the fire will need to be be bigger and hotter and might melt the aluminium).
    4.) Take out of fire and cover the top securely and let it cool.
    5.)Take out your charcoal and enjoy.
    and great tutorial by the the way o3o

    0
    Tmotj
    Tmotj

    Reply 6 years ago

    The foil works, you need to use heavy duty/commercial grade

    0
    TimmyMiller
    TimmyMiller

    8 years ago on Step 2

    you could probally use an old grill that has a lid with a vent, right

    0
    ElaLiser
    ElaLiser

    9 years ago on Introduction

    Are you serious? You would rather go through all of this trouble then simply buy a 4-pack of THIN charcoal pencils? First off, this would take forever, second, this is way to thick, I don't think even I can even sketch with a charcoal pencil like this. Just look at the way he writes the words, unless you want to spend your whole life carving it so it can get thinner, he can barely write with the pencil, for Christ's sakes. Bright Idea, though. I would have never thought of something like this.

    0
    GlueyMcGee
    GlueyMcGee

    Reply 9 years ago on Introduction

    Well, first off, with this method you can make as many charcoal pencils as you want, which could save money in the long run. Secondly,my pictures are just examples. You can make much thinner and more suitable pencils by finding thin branches and using that. Also, the wood I used for this instructable was maple, which is not ideal and is actually pretty hard to draw with. Oh, btw this takes very little time to make. You put some wood in tinfoil or an empty paint can, throw that in the fire, wait (you don't have to sit in front of the fire the whole time, too!), check once in a while. This way, you could make hundreds of pencils at a time.. which would probably be faster than going to buy hundreds of pencils at the store, not to mention cheaper.
    Yes, I am serious.

    0
    jilllindseyw
    jilllindseyw

    12 years ago on Step 2

     do you have any suggestion on how to get darker or lighter charcoal.