You can’t find a sharp pencil when you need it to save your life.
Attach the pencil to a small retractable reel badge or key holder: the kind used to hold security and event passes (available at office supply stores and online at amazon.com). Get one with a belt clip that you can attach to your shirt or work apron (slipping a small rubber band over the shank of the pencil helps keep it in the holder’s plastic loop). When you need to write a note or mark a part, just pull the pencil down and use it — the pencil always stays with you, since you can’t set it down. Alternatively, buy a bunch of badge reels and attach them near your work areas, or even to specific tools (always in a safe location, where the pencil won’t get into the machine if the reel fails or the pencil falls off).