I had posted reviews of two variants of the Double-Barrel FP (labelled as 2-in-1 Pen) earlier (i.e., long back). I acquired the Double-Headed FP recently and now that I have both models, these conceptually similar, but modularly distinctive fountain pens could be seen in one place.
Both models are Indian ebonite ED filler models, except at one ball-point end.
I bought the Double-Headed model on the same day I bought the Deccan Majaz. Both Hari and I had finished our purchases at Deccan, and Hari suggested that we pay a quick visit to another pen store in the vicinity, before heading for dinner. Though I was not very hopeful of finding anything new, we both went there and after some initial browsing found these double-headed fountain pens and a couple of slim mini fountain pens. These were not there the last time we visited the place, or maybe we didn’t observe properly. To cut the long story short, we bought one Double-Headed pen each and Hari bought both the slim minis, and I am glad now that I went to the pen shop …
The Double-Headed FP has a common barrel part with two nib-sections at each end. Each end has a separate cap. Though the barrel is common, each nib-section has its own separate ink reservoir. The ebonite rod is sort of bored from either end till a particular predetermined length so that there are ink chambers at both ends. Threading, sections, and caps are made for both ends.
The Double-Barrel FP, on the other hand, has a common cap part, with cap threading at either end of the hollow/almost hollow ebonite rod. Two separate FP units (or ball pens or one ball pen and the other an FP), one on either end can be threaded onto these caps. I have two versions of the Double-Barrel FP; one with two FP units and another with an FP unit and a ball-pen unit.
If one notices, all three pens have no clips. These pens are designed as desk pens. The length is forbidding; one just cannot carry them in one’s pocket; or even otherwise carry them along. So, these are not daily carry pens. The other reason for clips being ‘clipped’ in these pens is that these pens also doubled as rulers or more precisely, “roller rulers.”
Curiously, in the FP-BP Double-Barrel model that I have, made by Guider Pens, the common cap part has been bored through and one can see the light at the other end … and, the FP-FP Double-Barrel model, made by Deccan Pens, is shuttered in the middle … no light at the end of the tunnel …
These pens were made specifically for use in government offices in India (and also study rooms in houses). One end would have either hold blue or black ink and the other end would invariably have red ink. One for writing, and one for correction. And these perfectly cylindrical pens could be used for drawing horizontal lines in books; one could just “roll” the pen down the sheet and “rule” the page, so to speak. The pen need not be lifted from the page, just rolled along.
This kind of double purpose pen would have been envisaged during the colonial period, maybe even earlier, and would have continued for another 20-30 years after independence. Sheets would have been line-less and needed to be ‘ruled,’ and instead of a thin flat slat, a long cylindrical ruler might have seemed a better option. Those days, I am sure, both pens would have been fountain pens, and the ball-point pen option is a comparatively recent innovation.
I had reviewed my two Double-Barrel FPs here long back, as I mentioned earlier in this post … the first one is the both-sides-FP model from Deccan Pens, Hyderabad, Telangana; and the second one is ‘one-side-FP’ and ‘other-side-BP’ model from Guider Pens, Rajahmundry, Andhra Pradesh… and in case you are interested, you can find them here…