Saturday, December 12, 2009

Ritepoint Mechanical Pencil

Ritepoint Perpetual Calendar Mechanical Pencil

One thing I like about vintage mechanical pencils is their link to history and how they can take me down paths I would otherwise never have explored. I recently became the owner of this vintage mechanical pencil.
Ritepoint Perpetual Calendar mechanical pencil - Oran
It is a Ritepoint Perpetual Calendar mechanical pencil. I don’t know much about Ritepoint of St. Louis, Missouri, but they were clearly a reasonably large manufacturer who, like Autopoint, made a lot of advertising pencils. A couple of years ago I reverted to wearing an analogue mechanical wristwatch which has only a date display. Formerly I wore digital watches that told me the date and what day of the week it was. Without wanting to sound like some sort of moron or absent minded type of person, when I first got rid of my digital watch I really did struggle with what day of the week it was, let alone being able to tell the time by looking at the hands!!!! I could have done with a perpetual calendar pencil back then.
Calendar pencil top - Narvik
On the first day of each month you pull the top cap up and rotate it around to set the correct day of the week for the first day of the month, and then you have a calendar set for that month. In the picture above, M (Monday) has been rotated to coincide with the 1st of the month.

This pencil is in near new condition. As you might expect it is a twist tip screw mechanism using 1.18mm leads. The front section pulls off to reveal an eraser.
Ritepoint pencil apart - Australia
Whilst it is visually in near new condition, unfortunately a previous owner has tried to refill the lead by jamming them in through the spiral top of the mechanism beneath the eraser, down the sides of the spiral, up through the tip…you name it…wherever you look there’s a lead jammed in there and despite my best efforts I can’t get it to work again.

Now, as for this pencil taking me down an otherwise unknown path…well this is a souvenir pencil, printed with an image of the M/S Batory.
MS Batory - The Channel
I had not previously heard of the Batory, but a quick Google search reveals she was a ship with an interesting past.
MS Batory - Dunkirk
Originally a Polish ocean liner, she saw service as a troop ship with the Allied navies in WWII and her honour role matches that of many a mighty battlewagon - transporting evacuee children from the UK to Australia, British troops to Norway, the BEF from Dunkirk, the UK gold reserves to Canada, landing troops for the invasions of Algeria, Sicily, southern France, and more.

7 comments:

Wes said...

This would come in handy. Too bad you can't get it to work, though.

info said...

Like the blog and wonderful detail and passion you show. My interest is in promotional, or branded pencils, some of which are mechanical. So this article in particular demonstrates the power and longevity of a promotional pencil!!!

dsskies said...

I also have a Ritepoint Perpetual calendar pencil. It looks just like yours, but, it has the words "Sample NO. 192" on it as well as what I assume is an advertisement that says Rosebud brand with a bunch of roses behind the words. Any idea what age these pencils may be? The one I have works and looks like new.

jess said...

I have a very old, undated Mr. Peanut pen. I have found 2 that are identical except my "mr peanut" is encased and filled with liquid. If anyone has any idea of the value or is interested jkocher3410@gmail.com

Anonymous said...

Very interesting. When I find old pens at thrift stores, I too ponder their history, then I buy it. But nothing as unique as this.

Carine800 said...

I found a CUNARD WHITE STAR LINER "QUEEN ELIZABETH" Ritepoint mechanical pencil amongst my grandfather's things. All yellow pearl colour with a black top. Love !t. Still has the eraser but no lead.

glwilliams4501@gmail.com said...

I have a rite point pen not real old, around the 50's black and white with a dice on the top of the pen still works and good condition. just saved it gift from my Dad. RIP

Saturday,27 Sept. 2014