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Porter Figure Restored To Duty

234 Views 4 Replies 3 Participants Last post by  Bill C.
Back in the 1920s my grandfather operated Standard Gauge Lionel. Before he died more than 40 years ago, he passed on most of his equipment and accessories in that scale to me, and since then I have in turn given it to my sons. But today I was going through a storage tub and came across a figure of a battered baggage porter with more than fifty-percent paint loss. I thought, maybe it can spend some time at my Elmer Station just for nostalgia's sake.

Food Liquid Table Fluid Ingredient

So on the workbench it went to have some touch-ups with the acrylic paint I keep on hand for when the grandkids visit. Using color clues from surviving paint the Porter got a light restoration. It seems to be made of a composite material on a wire armature. Perhaps someone is familiar with these figures.

Statue Art Sculpture Hat Electric blue

Now on a few occasions the baggage porter will be restored to duty.
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Hi Bill,
Good job with the restoration.
I would have said that this was made be Elastolin, but after a search on the internet, I 'think' that it might be one made by TRICO in Japan.
At least it appears to be the same as this eBay listing, assuming that the listing is correct.
From a book I have, (Collecting Toy Soldiers by Richard O'Brien) it describes the composite construction for the german manufacturers this way, and I would think that the Japanese way would be the same, or similar.
A multi-part accurately machined brass mold is prepared and a cereal-like mixture of wood flour, kaolin and animal glue is hand pressed into both halves. A skeleton is inserted of thin wire having been bent to the proper shape by hand. The molds are then joined, air-dried and then heated for a time, to cure the figures.
David Leech, Canada
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if i remember right, my Elastolin figures in the early '50ies did not have this kind of square bases.
if you use this figure, beware of rain. if getting wet, the material is swelling and falls from the wire-bones.
best way to resore (the tip of the nose in your case) is wood-putty.
David and Kormsen, thanks for your very informative replies. I went on ebay and saw those ones with round bases, with some marked Japan on the bottom. Mine has no country of origin on it. He will be strictly indoors only, and I'll get the magnifying glass out and touch-up that nose.

The other ones from my grandfather that I passed along to my kids are a prosperous woman and man, both in topcoats, a porter holding a detachable bag with a wire handle, and a friendly looking police officer. All of them in much better shape than the porter I rediscovered.
I went back and worked on some details. I'm not getting any younger but I found that wooden toothpicks with a sharp points at both ends are better than a brush for some things such as eyes and other facial features.

Leg Plant Sculpture Statue Art

I made his coat buttons a little larger so thay stand out from a distance.

Blue Water People in nature Cap Electric blue

His right eye had survived, but I had to restore the left one, using paint on the toothpick point. He also received a nose job as suggested. I'll have to go back and fix that yellow paint run, but I want to leave some flecks and rough spots on his uniform so he maintains his vintage look.
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