Wahl Doric

The design movement now called Art Deco applied classical motifs in design and decoration to modern objects and materials; you can't find better examples of Deco in the pen world than the Eversharp Dorics, which were manufactured throughout the 1930s in a variety of attractive celluloid finishes. The full-size pens had a twelve-sided cross section, with roller clips on the early models and ornate gold-filled bands. This particular example in Morocco (burgundy pearl) dates from the early 1930s.

Later in the decade, the line would be diversified with new sizes, and variations in clips and cap bands. The Doric's profile, without the faceting, would also be used on other Eversharps (one example being the Oxford). For a time, piston fillers were available alongside the lever fillers.

The Dorics appear not to have been a tremendous sales success; they must have looked much more ostentatious than contemporary Sheaffer Balances and Parker Vacs & Duofolds, and hard times in the economy argued against excessive ostentation. They did make a strong impression on other penmakers, notably the Italians, who made so many variations of the Doric that this shape has come to be thought of as Italian. One dealer online even claims that OMAS "invented" the 12-facet design, although the first OMAS Extra appeared in 1932, a year later than the Doric.

Wahl's "double check" medallion (above right) was affixed to the company's highest-grade pens, much like the Sheaffer white dot (which it superficially resembles), but only later did Wahl offer a lifetime guarantee.

This pen features Eversharp's adjustable point (above left), an innovation that sounded good at the time, but did not last out the decade. It is interesting to own one of these, and fun to write with it, but the design does not permit the point to be thoroughly cleaned and polished to show the pen to its best advantage.

The point has a slider that moves back and forth over detents in two lengthwise slots. As the slider is moved forward, it reinforces the point and restricts its flexing, resulting in a fine, less shaded line for everyday writing chores. Pull the slider all the way back and the point is at its most flexible, allowing expressive writing for notes and signatures.

This file last posted on:
2005-Jan-20 17:50:26 CST
MCMVIII, the red network