Searching for Vintage Collectibles

Rare Atomic Robot Man Copied Including Box

One of the very earliest and rarest toy robots ever produced, Atomic Robot ManARM, is now available as a reproduction. Originals can sell for 5001000 and more; the reproduction retails for 20.

Yard flamingos inspire reproductions

Kitsch historians consider the pink yard flamingo an icon of American taste and culture. In a burst of nostalgia, reproduction importers have capitalized on the growing interest in the 1950s with new variations of the flamingo theme. We thought the two most unusual pieces were these of carved and painted wood. They are truly without taste or redeeming grace, a fitting tribute to the original.

Bronzes with Fake Tiffany Marks

Bronze figures and pieces with various Tiffany marks are routinely sold by antique reproduction wholesalers. These new pieces often sell for substantial prices. A new frog paperweight Fig. 16 marked Tiffany recently sold for 200 through an Internet auction site. It sold for 4.50 at a reproduction wholesalers warehouse.

New cat and owl cast iron andirons

These cast iron cat and owl figural andirons have been seen in brochures and catalogs from several sources. These once retailed for around $60 per set.

Nails as clues to age

Most everyone knows that handmade nails are older than machine made nails. But could you identify a handmade nail if you saw one? And could you separate an old nail from a reproduction nail? In addition to looking at how old nails were made, this article will also discuss how to examine nail holes, rust left by nails plus where, how and why specific types and shapes of nails were used.

The Aging of Drawers

Just like calling a piece of furniture old, don't make it so. One of the ways to make sure a piece of furniture is actually old, and not over restored, reproduced or new, is to look for genuine signs of normal wear and aging. In this article, we will be discussing the aging and wear patterns on American bottom gliding drawers.

Punchboards Faked

A punchboard is basically a low-stakes form of gambling often used as a trade stimulator. The "board" was made of pressed layers of paper and resembled a hard thick cardboard. Sealed holes in the board, about 1/8" diameter, held small folded strips of paper printed with numbers (Fig. 3). A "play" was to "punch" a hole of your choice and force out the folded paper sealed in the hole. The numbers printed on the paper determined your prize. Most punchboard prizes were merchandise like cigarettes, but boards could also pay off in cash.

Gum Machines

New Penny Gum Machines made of painted sheet steel look similar to old originals. This machine 14 1/2" tall x 7" wide. Clues to its recent age are: 1) it takes a modern size stick of gum for a penny; 2) clear inserts are plastic instead of glass, 3) new machines use modern Phillips/flat slot screw fasteners. Interior parts are very sharp edged so be careful if you remove the back for an examination. This machine is red but other colors are available. Price $20.

Match Safe or Vesta Box?

In almost all countries but England, the flammable part of a match has always been on a wood or cardboard stick. In England, however, the flammable tip is on the end of a waxed string. This variety of a match is called a "vesta." It is like a small, thin wax candle (see Fig. 1).

New Stanhopeswith 19th Century Images

by Mark Chervenka, ACRN editor