Unknown B-29 Ashtray

Objects incorporating models of aircraft.

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Unknown B-29 Ashtray

Postby jim_rasp » Fri Jul 24, 2015 2:19 pm

I received an ashtray with a B-29 on it from a friend, the only markings I can find on it is B-29 engraved in the ashtray part...I have no clue when this was made or if it is even worth something. Two of the original round clear prop arcs are still on it and one of the hubs for the props looks like it was unfinished. Can anyone help me with this? Any info would be greatly appreciated.

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Re: Unknown B-29 Ashtray

Postby MichaelB » Sat Jul 25, 2015 6:05 pm

Great piece!
It looks rather crude to me...could this have been a reject or simply unfinished? ...or a home built?
That one prop shaft looks like it was either abandoned during building or came as a repair. It's not hard to make new prop discs.
An interesting piece by any measure.
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Re: Unknown B-29 Ashtray

Postby sandmanoverhaul » Wed Nov 04, 2015 6:19 am

I suspect that this is probably a trench art item. But, unlike other typical trench art productions that utilize the brass shells as the basic material, airplanes cast in aluminum was a fairly common method as many air bases either had a small forge facility or contracted with local establishment. These model were generally sand cast a relatively crude in design. That's ok as they are usually created during the war and most became prized possessions of an officer.

In this sample, it probably was considered "complete" in 1945 but in reality sand cast models that quire lots of patience to complete as the surface is always rough and may have some odd protuberances from the casting process. These aluminum "tags"need to be carefully removed and the various mold lines, flashing, etc. will require some careful filing, sanding and buffing. There are usually some deep pits that are too deep to remove without distorting the lines. Options include having a aluminum welder fill in the bigger voids. Another option is to fill the voids with JB Weld, cure two days and file smooth. Though not as hard as the aluminum, JB Weld will take some extra effort to smooth. This is a good feature so that you have a difficult time dishing out the repaired surface.

This also means the model gets painted and not chromed.

I would make up some from a B-29 3-view that matches the scale of your model so that the nose may get contoured correctly.

Regards, Tom
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