How do you mark measurements on a wood stock you’re working on? By using a pencil, of course. It’s an unspoken rule that’s been the norm for as long as carpentry has been going on. The problem with this seemingly foolproof method is that it leaves marks that are not always easy to remove.
Enter woodworking erasers, a type of rubber eraser made especially for this purpose. Erasers for woodworking may be a strange concept to someone that’s just beginning, but have faith that they are 100 % worth it.
Admittedly, your work won’t suffer too much if you lack an eraser for woodworking, especially since you can use solvents or a hand plane to get rid of most pencil marks. However, you’re certainly going to be better off with a good eraser for woodworking.
This guide introduces you to the various types of woodworking erasers as well as some fundamental guidelines for choosing the right one.
How to Buy the Best Eraser for Woodworking
Avoid pencil erasers
First of all, most carpenter pencils don’t come with erasers. There’s a good reason for that, and it’s this: pencil erasers do a shoddy job on wood. Regardless of the quality and brand, these invariably leave marks on the wood.
Woodworking erasers don’t come attached to pencils. They’re usually sold individually and in different colors and textures. These little differences make them much more adept at clearing pencil marks on the wood.
Brand value means a lot.
We’re often tempted to buy lesser-known brands because they’re cheaper. It’s certainly a money-saving strategy in the short term but not good for your wallet in the long run.
With woodworking erasers, what you see is what you get. An eraser from a recognized brand will perform better than a knock-off or low-quality eraser. Whenever you can, buy the more expensive brand. It’s going to do a much better job, plus it will last longer.
Erasers may have certain limitations or capabilities, which will be indicated in the specifications. Of course, having more features isn’t necessarily a good thing.
Your goal is to find an eraser that suits your work. It shouldn’t be too hard to do that if you’re aware of the kind of specifications required.
Focus on the options closest to you, as they will be the easiest to get. You don’t want an eraser that costs less than its shipping fee or goes out of stock too often.
When it comes to erasers, you’re gradually going to rely on customer reviews to find the best options. Sure, they all look the same on paper, but until you can compare how they work, it will be hard to know what you need.
Fortunately, customers leave detailed reviews on the erasers they purchase, so there is always a wealth of unbiased information to explore. If you can’t trust what the manufacturer says, look at the review section to see what other customers think of the product.
Clearing pencil marks without an eraser
What if you can’t find a good enough eraser for woodworking? Does that mean your wood stock is stuck with every pencil marking you make?
Not necessarily, because there are a couple of other ways to get rid of pencil marks on the wood.
Using denatured alcohol
Denatured alcohol will dissolve pretty much any pencil mark left on the wood. However, you may still spot some pencil indents if you’re using a softwood stock.
Dressing stock with a hand plane
It’s natural for woodworkers to dress stock using a hand plane as one of the final finishes. In such scenarios, pencil marks come off without leaving lead, charcoal, polymer, or lead residue.
Hand planing also removes all visible indentation from penciling. The problem is that a hand plane may not be able to reach markings in tight spaces.
The Best Woodworking Erasers on Amazon
RuiLing Sand and Pencil Eraser Combo (2-Pack)
Here is a simple, fairly affordable option for anyone looking for their first decent woodworking eraser. It also comes with a sanding eraser to keep your belts and discs in tip-top shape.
The eraser is made from high-quality, non-toxic natural rubber that cleans away pencil markings without leaving a trace. However, it is designed to be multi-purpose, so it works on ballpoints, gel pens, and fountain pens as well.
Each of the erasers measures 68mm by 16mm by 10mm, a moderate size that is capable of lasting you years and feels reasonably comfortable in hand. The pencil eraser has super fine sand particles, so it can also be used on paper.
ALLY Tools Carpenter Pencil Kit with Pink Eraser
Get this complete carpenter’s marking kit that includes a pink pencil eraser, a printed ruler (Metric and Imperial units), a sharpener, and 24 neon-green carpenter pencils.
It’s a complete kit for the woodworker looking to increase their measuring accuracy. The kit looks professional, and every component is well-made and highly visible for environments like job sites.
The pencils are made using HB #2 lead, which is ideal for making both fine and thick markings. Sharpening them is easy using the provided sharpener, and the pink eraser does an excellent job of clearing all markings from your wood stock afterward.
ALLY Tools also promises a 100 % money-back guarantee, refunds, and replacements for all customers that are unsatisfied with the pencil kit.
TSONCR Carpenter Pencil Set
This set of mechanical pencils is ideal for precision marking your wood stock before cutting or joining. The pencils use 2B lead and come with a 2B eraser that clears away markings, leaving the surface as clean as it originally was.
The set includes three 2.0mm carpenter pencils (blue, black, and silver), a sharpener, and a lead pointer sharpener. The design is practical, and it allows you to swap out colored lead and graphite refills. The ones it comes with are impressively break-resistant and create dark, vibrant markings.
The eraser ensures that no trace of these markings remains after the job is done. It clears using a combination of fine and coarse particles to ensure that even pencil indentations are not too visible.