December 9, 2009 at 2:42 am #11294
My purpose for posting this one is two fold:
1. To get opinions about brass bells that have been painted.
2. To see how many variations of this bell are out there!
2 1/4″ diameter
Brass with steel clapper.
2 part mold (seam visible inside bell)
loop staple for mounting clapper.
She’s a pretty little dutch lady bell. So far I have found 3 variations (I only actually own this one) where she is carrying apples in her apron, a scarf, or knitting like this one. Hats and upper torso part of dress have slight variations.
So that’s three variations so far.
In general, I personally don’t like to see the details of the brass molding obscured by paint, but…
In this case – for example – the paint certainly adds another dimension to the bell, especially with the orange eyes! It looks like this was done quite a while ago. Also of interest is that the back of the dress is painted a different color.
I do see one major benefit of painting the bell as well. Once painted the bell is protected more. Handling wears off the paint, not the brass. People stop polishing the design out of the brass when painted too!
Under the paint, this is probably the best preserved old bell I have!
A challenge! What are your opinions out there? Paint or no paint? Let’s find out what our membership thinks!
PS. A public service reminder: Paint of this vintage is usually lead based! 😆 ( So remember not to lick the bells!) 😀
December 13, 2009 at 11:11 pm #15027
Garry, This is a good subject. Most all bells have a surface that tells what the bell is all about. In some cases the coloring of the features enhances that expression or story (what ever you want to call it) , it’s like watching a black and white movie or a vivid wide screen color movie. The end product depends on the persons artistic ability, tools at hand and why paint the bell: for fun, sales appeal or a good story. To get a good job there are many factors to look at; a) surface details, lettering and designs, b) surface condition, rusty, pitted, dirty, painted, etc, c) surface finish, smooth (lost wax method), or like 60 grit sandpaper, d) primer needed, e) type of application of paint, roller, paint brush, spray etc, f) type of paint,-for high detail the model RR paint is good, it is made special with very, very finely ground pigment not to cover up details. g) Large bells exposed to the weather should have special paint applied using some of the factors listed. Attached is a picture of a bell that because of the paint sold for a lot, lot more than it’s worth. Attractive but the bird is out of place, not original. I do not know the age of this bird & bell, the painting seems in good shape, probably not handled much.[attachment=1:i0j4k78m]riverside bell3.5×3.jpg[/attachment:i0j4k78m][attachment=1:i0j4k78m]riverside bell3.5×3.jpg[/attachment:i0j4k78m]
December 14, 2009 at 9:38 am #15028Holly BarnesParticipant
I have a similar parrot bell. I am unsure of the composition but much like the other parrot shown. Mine may be smaller and the parrot sits more upright. It is fairly heavy for it’s size. Sorry I have no information on this bell.
December 14, 2009 at 5:22 pm #15025
Holly,This bell is 2 1/4′ dia x 2″high, not including the bird. Around the bottom lip, of the bell not the bird, are the words MISSION INN. The bell was made by using one of the patterns developed by Mrs. Forbes. I have hundreds of her documents, pictures,and casting molds, nowhere are figurines of animals found. The only figurines she made were Fr. Serra, St. Francis, Gold Rush Man, California Woman, all concering the subject of California history. I have a Frobes bell, same size as the parrot bell, named CONESTOGA with a horses head, what a story the seller made up all most 500 words long, and they stuck to it. Now that would be another subject, the tall tales of bells, at another time. Best wishes, Max Kurillo
December 14, 2009 at 7:07 pm #15026
Holly et.al., My mistake, 😳 my wife read what I sent and corrected me. Mrs. forbes did make two animal figurines for mounting on a bell: a swallow and a bear. There was a series of about 60 silhouette bells, these are sheet metal figures, of boats, plants, people and animals, mounted on top of 1 1/2″bells, all with with a black crinkle finish. Max
December 17, 2009 at 4:10 am #15021Neil GoeppingerParticipant
I have three of these bells, aquired over a number of years, and I love them. I don’t often find them. Mine are, I believe, bronze, based on their sound. There are no mold marks, and two of them have gold ormalou (sp?) plating the inside of the bell. All are nicely painted on the outside. I have a hard time keeping my granddaughters away from them as they are both pretty and have a great sound. I really know little about them and have no idea who made them. I would guess they are European. — Neil Goeppinger
December 17, 2009 at 6:51 pm #15022
Are they the same 3 that I described or different ones?
December 18, 2009 at 4:55 am #15023Neil GoeppingerParticipant
Garry, Mine are all different from yours. I’m in Florida right now and my bells are in Iowa, but my memory is that one is looking in a hand held mirror. None of the dresses are like yours, and I believe all three of mine are a little taller than yours. My three are each different from each other as well. I found my first one when buying a church bell in Pa, and I believe the other two were purchased at ABA convention bell sales rooms. — Neil
December 18, 2009 at 5:27 pm #15024Carolyn WhitlockParticipant
Forgive me for putting in a commercial here but…
The January-February issue of The Bell Tower will feature a four-page spread of information about the annual ABA Convention in Cleveland, Ohio. Neil mentioned the sales room. You can’t believe it until you see it! There will be thousands of bells on exhibit and for sale! The ABA Convention is a great way to increase your recognition and knowledge of bells. The amount of bell information that is available at Convention is staggering!
So, please give serious consideration to going this year. The hotel is fabulous; all breakfasts and four meals are included; the programs will be interesting and informative; and you’ll find a bunch of the nicest people you’ll ever meet!
And just wait until you see the picture of the gorgeous 2010 Convention Bell!
January 19, 2010 at 11:35 pm #15020Peggy L.Participant
Well here I go again. Painted Female brass bells are something I have looked for a long time.I don t know what is happeinng, however, l also just obtained the first one I had ever seen on the open market. I knew they were out there, from researching in the past. This kind of rings out to me if these are really authentic or not. Any one knowing anything about this I would love to hear
January 20, 2010 at 1:58 am #15019
Not sure what you mean by ‘authentic’. I believe that they are correct, in that the painted and unpainted varieties are essentially identical. Made at the same time, same company etc. I suspect that the ‘painted’ versions were due to one of two reasons:
a) home users (especially those tired of polishing) would paint them – rather like a hobby such as bisk (sp?) ware pottery. (pottery sold in the unglazed form for home artists to decorate.)
b) a way for early ‘value added’ pricing to be applied to the item. A local store, for example, might have someone paint the stock so that they could sell them at a higher price – not only a bell but now a figurine as well, for example.
Such a home / cottage industry would account for the low numbers of painted bells, as it would be pretty hit and miss if it were done or not.
Again I have no proof, it’s just a suspicion of mine!
- You must be logged in to reply to this topic.