11 hours ago
#21
  • Shaun
  • Senior Member
  • St Peters, NSW, Australia
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(Yesterday, 05:27 AM)BSWoodturning Wrote: So the question arises: What is it? At first I though it was solid little chunk of lathed celluloid because of the colour, but it lacked the lightness and didn't pass the rub and smell test: it doesn't smell at all like camphor. But... what it DOES smell like is a little bit disturbingly like rotten ...something... meat? Sour milk? Weird. A little further research points me in what I think is the right direction: "Galalith" (from Greek: "milk stone"): one of the first ever plastics; a synthesis of casein (from milk) and formalin. It was also known by a few other terms (Erinoid, for example)...

[Image: W2hhRpu.jpg]
That's impressive research, Shaun!  Even if you're wrong about any aspects of this brush, I believe you are in the right ballpark.  Lovely find!

Thanks, Brad, yes. Smile Naturally, I remain open-minded as to an alternative brush-maker, subject to newer information coming to light. It may take some time, of course. I'd have liked to have asked Mr Gary Young for an opinion, but that's not possible, unfortunately. In the meantime, here is an advert from the 1922 British Industries Fair for Erinoid (the British name for Galalith, post-1914 when production in Stroud, England, took off). Note that it specified the new product was suitable for turning (available in rods) and was a good substitute for bone, ivory, etc. As a handle-maker, I'd have been intrigued, and naturally, Erinoid had already been available prior to the Fair Smile

[Image: R6H0LUj.png]

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 1 hour ago
#22
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(11 hours ago)Shaun Wrote:
(Yesterday, 05:27 AM)BSWoodturning Wrote: So the question arises: What is it? At first I though it was solid little chunk of lathed celluloid because of the colour, but it lacked the lightness and didn't pass the rub and smell test: it doesn't smell at all like camphor. But... what it DOES smell like is a little bit disturbingly like rotten ...something... meat? Sour milk? Weird. A little further research points me in what I think is the right direction: "Galalith" (from Greek: "milk stone"): one of the first ever plastics; a synthesis of casein (from milk) and formalin. It was also known by a few other terms (Erinoid, for example)...

[Image: W2hhRpu.jpg]
That's impressive research, Shaun!  Even if you're wrong about any aspects of this brush, I believe you are in the right ballpark.  Lovely find!

Thanks, Brad, yes. Smile Naturally, I remain open-minded as to an alternative brush-maker, subject to newer information coming to light. It may take some time, of course. I'd have liked to have asked Mr Gary Young for an opinion, but that's not possible, unfortunately. In the meantime, here is an advert from the 1922 British Industries Fair for Erinoid (the British name for Galalith, post-1914 when production in Stroud, England, took off). Note that it specified the new product was suitable for turning (available in rods) and was a good substitute for bone, ivory, etc. As a handle-maker, I'd have been intrigued, and naturally, Erinoid had already been available prior to the Fair Smile

[Image: R6H0LUj.png]

Now that's really neat, Shaun!  It would be nice to be able to order some Tongue

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