H. Guhl of Hamburg, Germany, patented the Jupiter
pencil pointer on November 9, 1897 (#593, 093). It was
sold in two versions, the front-crank handle and the
side- or end-crank type. There were four configurations
to accommodate the different barrel sizes of various
writing devices. Pictured here is an end type, which
is considered to be the second model of the two. It
uses a reversible, hardened milling-type cutter to produce
The Jupiter was somewhat more expensive than competitors'
comparable products. Advertisements stated it was incredibly
fast and could be used to sharpen 80 pencils in just
10 minutes, all "without breaking a single tip."
The sharpener was patented again on September 11, 1906
(#830,093). Then in 1931, A.P.M. Guhl produced patent
#1,788,347, which essentially replicated the original
patent. Clearly, the pursuit of pencil sharpening was
taken seriously as the family business.
particular example is marked with the Johann Faber name,
a prominent pencil manufacturer at that time, and, the
inventor of the mechanical pencil, patent #33,034, issued
on August 13, 1861.