Wednesday, September 30, 2020

Immutable Laws of Model Horsery

An acceptable Tractor Supply Eclipse and Classic Drafter have been acquired; I even found a couple of good things at the Salvation Army next door, including a Will James hardcover with most of its original dustjacket. 

But I am most excited about the Bay Running Foal that arrived a couple of days ago in a box lot I assumed was going to be mostly bodies:

It’s like an immutable law of model-horsery that any box lot over a certain quantity must contain either a Misty, a Bay Running Foal, or both. (FYI: there’s a Misty in another large box lot I am saving for the weekend.) 

I knew he was in there – I saw him in the photographs, obviously – but what surprised me is that he’s a near mint* pre-1970 variation that almost perfectly matches my near-perfect pre-1970 Bay Running Mare.

With the exception of the eyewhites, which were very, very rarely a thing for Breyer Foals in the 1960s. I am not sure why, it just was. 

I could have sworn that I saw a Bay Running Foal with eyewhites in a body box at an early 1990s BreyerFest, but not having seen any since then, now I’m not so sure. It may well have been either a figment of my imagination, or a little aftermarket customization.

One other interesting thing worth noting about this model is the fact that its frontmost hoof was rather aggressively trimmed or “nubbed” at the factory. 

This wasn’t an uncommon occurrence, especially in the 1960s and early 1970s. Even though the mold halves were fixtured after molding to prevent that sort of thing, there were enough variables in the manufacturing process that some models still wouldn’t stand properly after assembly anyway, and thus require adjustments after the fact. 

What cracks me up about these “nubbed” models is that, for the most part, they still don’t stand up very well, or often at all. It makes me wonder if the surface they were using at the factory wasn’t level to begin with, resulting in models perfectly designed for an imperfect surface?

I still love him anyway, and until I find an un-nubbed one just like it (or better!) he’s staying. 

*(He may appear to have some marks in the photo, but these are all removable. Cleaning the sales items takes priority!)


timaru star ii said...

Over decades, legs warp and change. You don't know what conditions he was stored in. On the other hand it is ridiculously easy to adjust a model's legs. I do it all the time.

Suzanne said...

I had to dig out my pre-U.S.A. bay Running Foal. He's darker than most, no eyewhites but he looks close in color to the bay Running Mare with eyewhites in Breyer Molds And Models (4th ed.) It's his hindmost hoof that's nubbed, and his poor foremost leg was so severly bent mid-cannon that paint flaked off.

What a silver lining though! I've passed over a few ebay lots because I didn't want to deal with duplicates. I'm not much of a horse-trader, the ones I don't want to keep tend to stick around anyway.

Suzanne said...

I lied, the foal's foremost hoof is a bit "nubbed" too.
Weird thing is, I have a mental image of his left fore hoof being flattened, but none of mine are like that. They all have a bit cut off the foremost and hindmost hooves.