The firm was founded by Clemens Riefler (1820-76) in 1841 following his apprenticeship with Ertel in Munich. The “Round System” of compasses, for which the firm is famous, was patented by his son Sigmund in 1877. The firm was located in Bavaria, with premises in Nesselwang and Munchen (Munich). Riefler continues today in Nesselwang, making drafting furniture and CAD equipment.
A large Riefler round system set dating from the early twentieth century. The case is covered with tan leather and lined with black velvet. Some of the pens are not original and the pricker has a broken handle. However it contains some interesting pieces including the large wing dividers with hairspring adjustment. It also includes an unusual pattern of drop bow compass, a road pen and a curved line pen. Under a flap in the lid there is an excentrolinead (for drawing spokes in a wheel, etc.).
Riefler A82 set. A superb 1930s set with a 20 inch beam compass, dotting pen to fit it and another dotting pen for use with the six inch compass. Both dotting pens can also be used separately to produce a variety of different dotted lines. There are also a road pen, a curved line pen, a detail pen and a border pen. Two pens were missing and one has been replaced by one from my spare A12 set. Almost all of the instruments are actually different from those in the set above. The set belonged to Elder Dempster Lines.
Riefler A12 round system set dating from 1955. This is a much smaller brother of the A82 set seen above. The A12 set was a very popular set and is frequently found on EBay. The spring bow was an incorrect replacement and has since been replaced with the correct type from another A12 set bought for spares.
This Riefler set probably dates from the 1920s or early 1930s. The pens have hinged nibs. It is missing the compass lengthening bar.
Riefler beam compass fittings from about 1900. They are in a fitted brown leather covered case and are nickel silver.
Three-section, nickel-silver beam compass by Riefler in a brown leather covered case dating from pre-WWI. The beam is rectangular in section and graduated in cm and mm to 105 cm. There is a micrometer screw and vernier for accurately setting the fixed trammel to zero.
Riefler R1 beam compass. This three section compass extends to 26 inches and is made of nickel silver. It probably dates from the 1930s and has a black leatherette covered, black velvet lined case. The tubular beam is of a smaller diameter than that of the R2 below but considerably larger than that of the R6.
Riefler R2 beam compass. This three section, nickel silver instrument extends to 42 inches.
Riefler R6 18 inch beam compass. This has only two sections and is much lighter construction than the R2. It is similar to the one in the A82 set.
Riefler 26/R2 42” two section beam compass (max. radius 1 metre). Dating from 1968, this model replaced the earlier R2 shown above and had an even larger (10mm) diameter beam. The 26/R4 (3 section) and 26/R5 (4 section) compasses were similar for 1.5 and 2 metres max. radius respectively and Riefler advertised they could supply 26 series beam compasses for up to 3 metres radius.
Set of pens and ivory handle by Riefler. When unscrewed from the pen, a pricker is revealed on the end of the handle. The set is contained in a brown leather covered case and probably dates from the early twentieth century
Nickel silver vernier protractor by Riefler in a brown leather covered case, pre-WWI. The vernier reads to 3 minutes of arc.
Riefler section liner in nickel-silver. It has a brown leather case and dates from before WWI. At each end of the base plate is a screw with a pin beneath for holding it in place. It is set to a range of line spacings by altering the angle. It is advanced by depressing the lever.
Riefler pillar compass and brown leather case dating from pre-WWI.
Riefler A61 set, probably dating from the 1960s. The instruments are nickel silver and stainless steel, and include a dotted line pen, top right hand corner, with three wheels, that can be detached from its handle and inserted in the large compass.
This Riefler G33a set marks a departure from the round system, probably in the 1950s. The compass can be quickly adjusted and then clamped to the arc by the small lever before fine adjustment with the screw at the leg end of the arc.
Riefler R4 beam compass dating from 1964. The beam compass has a maximum radius of 1.5 metres and has a roller support
Riefler G0 spring bow set. The pen has a detachable insert that is the three bladed (broad line) type that can also be fitted to the compass.
Riefler Y1 drop bow compass, probably dating from the 1950s
Riefler 8 inch electrum proportional divider with setting bar dating from ca.1950.