Thursday, February 5, 2015

All Dalled Up

I’ve decided that this month I’m going to devote a little time to shuffling and reorganizing the collection, a shelf or a box a day. It seems a less intimidating task that way, plus it gives me the opportunity to stockpile some photos for future posts and topics.

First up are a couple of "office buddies" who are going back into storage; a pair of Bell-bottomed Shires are taking their place in the desktop rotation:

The #85 Dall Sheep was probably released in 1970, shortly after the Bighorn Ram mold it was based on was introduced; the ephemera of that era is, to be charitable, less than clear on the subject. While the original release of the Bighorn Ram continued in production through 1980, the Dall Sheep was discontinued in 1973.

As you can see, in spite of his relatively short production run, he came in two distinct color variations: Gray, and Tan. The Gray ones seem to be more common than the Tan, but I don’t know to what degree. I’m not even sure which variation came first. There are, supposedly, a few pieces out there that have a mix of gray and tan shading, but I can’t recall seeing one personally.

Even though the Gray one may be the more common of the two, I prefer him to the Tan, if only because blue-gray color of the paint contrasts nicely with his pretty brown eyes, an unusual feature for any Breyer release from the 1970s. It’d be decades before see brown eyes again on any Breyer production piece, Horse or Nonhorse.

Although it’s a relatively uncommon Nonhorse release, Dall Sheep aren’t too expensive or too difficult to find. The only exception to that would be if you’re looking for one with a Blue Ribbon Sticker: the few I’ve seen always ended up a little bit beyond my financial comfort zone.


Denise said...

I love the Dahl sheep! I have a variation with white horns and both brown/gray shading/striping around horn edges and body.

Corky said...

I've always wanted the Dall Sheep, but have never managed to get one so far. And I was unaware of the tan variation--I'd only ever seen grey ones!