Ref. : 511
Production Date : 1950’s
I have recently acquired this so rare Rotting Blei-Kuli. Since then, I have only vaguely heard of this very early lead-holder. References are non-existent, it doesn’t appears in any of my documentation nor publicity, and only short mention of this pen surface on the internet. Needless to say I was quite happy to have a near-mint copy, complete with box and instruction.
The Blei-Kuli is (to my knowledge) the very first attempt made by Rotring with a fine lead-holder. In the 1950’s this was quite a rarity and design of that sort where a bit alien. It can be considered as the elder of the forthcoming Tikky line of the 1970’s. The design is largely based on the well established (at that time) line of Tikk-Kuli roller. I have made a picture of the Blei-Kuli side by side with a regular Tikk-Kuli, and the legacy is evident. It share the same elegant « streamline » design, typical of Rotring products of the mid-1950’s.
The main difference is that the black body is not a two pieces affair, but moulded as a single piece of plastic. The internal mechanism is of course completely different, made of full brass-metal (with has suffered from oxydation and discoloration in my copy), but the whole pen feels very sturdy and reliable. It still performs very well today. The lead diameter is another curiosity with absolutely non-standard 1,18mm diameter. Fortunately Rotring provide 10 spares mine and they were all present with my pen, which make me think that the pen was never used.
The Tikk-Kuli have a lot of different color available, my Blei-Kuli is full black, don’t known if it was also produced in other colors.
Sadly, there is no reference number to be found, but the small printer’s mark on the bottom of the notice suggest June 1956 (Gebae 6.56). If someone has more infos, photos, documents to hare about this pen, I will gladly talk to him…
I’ve included a full scan of the notice for documentation purpose as it is so rare, and here is below a rough English translation.
PS : « Blei » means « Lead » in English
THE RELIABLE LEAD-HOLDER
WITH THE RED RING
– Pressure mechanics of the highest precision and durability
– New, highly elastic and resistant clip
– Gold-platted hardware
– 50 cm of normal mine – 10 x 1.18 mm diameter – in the container
Mechanics: A firm pressure with the thumb on the push button and with a clearly audible « click! »
The minimum require lead will start writing out of the tip
(Figure 1). The BLEI-KULI is now ready to write!
To move the mine back to its original position, press. Button as above, but keep it pressed down (Fig. 2) until you reach the handwriting with the other hand or on a firm support
Back. Then release the push button. The BLEI-KULI is now back
In rest position!
Refill mine :
Every new LEAD-KULI
Leads 50 cm normal mines in its container (10 mines with 1.18 mm diameter and 5 cm length each). If this stock is exhausted, fill up the regular mines available by first pulling off the push button, pushing the mines into the container below, and reinserting the push button. After repeated actuation of the push button, the first spare mine will be pushed.
THE MINE TRANSPORT FOLLOWS FULLY AUTOMATICALLY by the pressure mechanics!
Repair : BLEIKULI need to be repaired or repacked by your dealer or send it directly to the manufacturer:
HAMBURG-ALT ONA, DONNERSTRASSE 5