Tintenkuli [Early Design]
Ref. : No ref.
Production Date : 1930
This post is a brief showcase of one of my rarest item. I don’t intend to go into a full-length history of the Tintenkuli here. It would requires much documentation (that I’m sometimes lacking), and a lot of time (that I’m always lacking). If you want to read a quality detailed study on the Tintenkuli, there’s a great body of work that you can found here
This Tintenkuli is a very early model, I don’t think it’s from the very first batch of Tintenkuli (some models didn’t even wear the name Tintekuli, and I guess these ones are the true first generation models), but I think this is a second generation pen dating from the early 1930’s
In 1920, Dr. Wilhelm Riepe brings back some stylographic pens from the USA and started produced his own version in Germany. In 1928, he founded the Tiku Handels GmbH Altona, which will became Rotring. You can see at the end of this post a reply coupon which bears the name and address of Tiku Handels. The two others scan are from the same brochure and are unequivocally precisely dated from the year 1930. However this brochure is a bit confusing because the pen pictured on the cover and the one inside are not exactly the same design (see the top of the cap). Plus the fact that the cap is always pictured positioned on the barrel so you can’t see the design of the lever filler mechanism, you ended-up with more questions than answers regarding the complete design of the early Tintenkulis.
The pen itself is made of very hard black rubber/plastic or maybe celluloid, I can’t tell. At this point there is no red ring anywhere, nor any mention of « Rot Ring », it is clearly branded as a Tintenkuli. The earlier Tintenkuli were not piston filled, instead a lever filler mechanism did the job. The lever need to be place in vertical position for filling the pen [see picture]. The nib mechanism show some features that would last for very long time in Rotring’s process, notably the screw thread and global design but overall is very different from even second generation Tintenkuli. The needle / needle support is quite unique I think. If you have more informations on early Tintenkuli, please share, because these pens are now nearly 90 years-old and solid documentation is quite hard to find.