The 7 Best Electric Erasers
This wiki has been updated 17 times since it was first published in October of 2016. Perfect for busy graphic artists, architects and illustrators, these electric erasers take all the hand fatigue out of correcting your work. They can be used on both pencil and charcoal drawings, and are especially useful for those with medical conditions, like arthritis, or injuries that make traditional erasers difficult to use. When users buy our independently chosen editorial recommendations, we may earn commissions to help fund the Wiki. Skip to the best electric eraser on Amazon.
Giving Your Hand A Break
One possible solution to this problem is an electric eraser.
Whether you're a graphic artist, an illustrator, or you're just trying to get your homework done with minimal fanfare, the act of tiring out your hand and wrist to correct every single mistake on paper with a bulky eraser certainly gets tedious and even downright painful after a while. Additionally, if you need an implement to help you make additional highlights or accents to an artistic work, that large eraser isn't going to make your job any easier. One possible solution to this problem is an electric eraser.
The electric eraser is a battery-operated tool that typically comes in the shape of a pen or pencil and is equipped with an electric motor connected to an eraser head. The tool ultimately removes either pencil or charcoal markings from various paper media without the need for unnecessary hand pressure or downward force that could otherwise cramp your hand or even damage the artistic creation you're attempting to perfect. For example, imagine that you've just been tasked with designing a large black-and-white poster for an art class. This poster must consist of a series of small dots or streaks surrounded by graphite markings. Producing this imagery requires precise detailing on a very small scale. So, what's the predicament? You only have a large, chunky rubber eraser at your disposal, which could end up removing too much detail from your work. This creates a unique niche that can be filled by nearly any pick on our list of electric erasers.
The beauty of an electric eraser is in its precision. This is true regardless of whether you're attempting to undo a mistake, add intricate line work to a drawing, or clean up the edging around a work piece. With such a tool, it becomes easier to depict those small white dots on paper, as the eraser head spins rapidly to remove only a small diameter of the graphite-marked surface onto which it has been placed. Such precision is also accomplished without a lot of downward pressure from the user.
Other benefits of the electric eraser include a lightweight construction and overall style. Unlike a chunky rubber or vinyl-made eraser, the electric variety is made with a sturdy plastic outer shell that is ergonomically-fashioned to fit comfortably in your hand like a pen. The eraser usually has a convenient power switch right on its body for seamless operation. Additionally, because the tool requires very little pressure on paper, it can be used to lighten an image without removing the mark completely, making shading a much easier process.
Choosing An Electric Eraser
There are several practical considerations to keep in mind when purchasing an electric eraser, the most important of which is its overall dimensions. When using the tool for extended periods of time, its length and width will make all the difference in terms of comfort. This is especially important when you have to perform line work, shadowing, or edging effects on paper that require specific attention to detail. The eraser should fit easily in your hand with a reach similar to that of an ordinary pen or pencil, but without cramping your muscles or causing wrist pain in the process.
When using the tool for extended periods of time, its length and width will make all the difference in terms of comfort.
The electric motor in the device should be powerful enough to spin the eraser head at a fast speed so as to minimize the amount of force you have to exert on the paper. A reliable electric motor will save your wrist and hand from cramping, while also preventing potential damage to your work piece.
If you anticipate sharing an electric eraser with a lot of people, look for one that will support both left and right-handed users.
Pay attention to the number and types of tips that come with your eraser of choice. If you have the opportunity to test the tool before purchasing it, make sure the tip remains secure when attached and that normal force won't cause it to come off easily.
One final addition to the battery-powered eraser you might consider is an integrated pencil sharpener. This comes in quite handy if you're a traveling architect, art student, or designer, and you don't always have access to conventional office supplies when you're on the road.
A Brief History Of Electric Erasers
Prior to the use of modern rubber, the earliest types of eraser technology appeared during ancient Greek and Roman times, taking the form of smoothable wax tablets used to erase lead or charcoal from pieces of parchment. Other rudimentary materials included sandstone and pumice, which could be used to remove mistakes from papyrus documents written in ink.
In 1858, Hymen Lipman of Philadelphia patented the first pencil with a rubber eraser attached to one end.
Up until the latter part of the 18th century, de-crusted, moistened, and balled bread crumbs were favored as the most popular material for erasing erroneous marks. Unfortunately, bread wasn't the most practical of choices, due to its potential to mold and rot over time. This makes you think twice about maintaining that nervous habit of chewing on your pencil eraser were it made of aging bread.
British engineer Edward Nairne is generally credited with having developed and marketed the first rubber eraser in Europe as early as 1770. Nairne claimed to have stumbled upon his invention accidentally, inadvertently picking up a piece of rubber instead of breadcrumbs.
Like its bread-made counterpart, raw rubber was also perishable. It wasn't until 1839 when American chemist Charles Goodyear would discover the process of vulcanization, which was capable of curing rubber and increasing its level of durability for use as en eraser tool. In 1858, Hymen Lipman of Philadelphia patented the first pencil with a rubber eraser attached to one end.
The first electric eraser was invented in 1932 by Arthur Dremel of Wisconsin. Dremel's device consisted of a replaceable cylinder of eraser material attached to a chuck and driven by an electric motor. This addition of motor speed allowed for significantly less pressure to be applied to paper, preventing damage to artistic works.
Today's electric erasers maintain a focus on portability, precision, quality, comfort, and ease of use with an ability to improve upon even the smallest of details.
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