Author Topic: Optimum Brasses (Authentic lost wax castings) UK  (Read 6279 times)

Jeff L Headley

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Optimum Brasses (Authentic lost wax castings) UK
« on: March 12, 2009, 11:02:41 PM »
Optimum Brasses UK is now offering sales direct to the US public. You have to open a google account first. The exchange rate is rather nice also. I have to say I was pleased with the response and I had my brasses in 4 days. Tell Rachel I said Hello

Tom M

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Re: Optimum Brasses (Authentic lost wax castings) UK
« Reply #1 on: March 15, 2009, 05:22:34 PM »
Jeff,

Were you able to download their reproduction furniture catalogue in pdf?  I tried several times and each time it "completed" after about 483k (not 7M like it says at the start of download).  I try to open the file and it is empty.  I would like to see their stuff.  I'm about to outfit a spice box on frame and I'll need about 1 billion drawer pulls!

Tom
Tom Meiller, SAPFM Member #684

Jeff L Headley

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Re: Optimum Brasses (Authentic lost wax castings) UK
« Reply #2 on: March 16, 2009, 09:12:43 PM »
Tom, I didn't have a problem down loading their catalog. I did order a catalog and got it the day before the brass came. I should say that I have been made aware that they are not offering their American castings. I think we should go through Londonderry for those which I did not see in Optimums catalog. Luckily since I already ordered the brasses my customer is tired of eagles on their brasses this time. One extra comment these are very close to period brass and need to be treated gingerly when installed ( posts and nuts). I am delivering the piece tomorrow and it really comes down to what  my client thinks. Drum roll please.

Rick Yochim

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Re: Optimum Brasses (Authentic lost wax castings) UK
« Reply #3 on: March 17, 2009, 08:55:08 AM »
Jeff,

When you say these are close to period brasss and need to be treated carefully when installed, do you mean because they are delicate or for some other reason? I know that when I've been in your shop you and Steve have mentioned to me about being careful not to "smudge-up" the bare brass because that's where it will tarnsh, so are you making reference to that as well? Please expand a little bit on this.

Good luck with your client.

Rick Yochim   

Jeff L Headley

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Re: Optimum Brasses (Authentic lost wax castings) UK
« Reply #4 on: March 17, 2009, 10:01:22 PM »
Rick, Thank you for your question. I should have been clearer. The threads on the posts are quite shallow and with a threaded disk or ring can be stripped easily or the posts twisted off, soft brass. They should be driven in a snug hole, the nut or actually a threaded ring threaded on and then it should be crimped against the post.
Threaded metal, isn't technology incredible, what will we think of next.
This thread about my post ( no pun intended) had nothing to do with touching polished brass and how it will tarnish before it can get delivered. I wonder if fingerprints can be lifted 150 years later microscopically off of period brasses. I hope this answers your question.

Antiquity Period Designs, Ltd.

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Re: Optimum Brasses (Authentic lost wax castings) UK
« Reply #5 on: March 18, 2009, 08:39:07 AM »
Jeff,

What is the web site for the brasses?

Dennis Bork
Professional period furniture maker since 1985.  Received a B.S. degree in physics then apprenticed and worked as a wood patternmaker for 12 years. Cartouche recipient 2009. Retired Dec. 2018.

Rich Nimetz

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Re: Optimum Brasses (Authentic lost wax castings) UK
« Reply #6 on: March 18, 2009, 09:57:15 AM »
Dennis

The web address is  http://optimumbrasses.co.uk/

Rich
Richard J Nimetz
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Jeff L Headley

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Re: Optimum Brasses (Authentic lost wax castings) UK
« Reply #7 on: March 18, 2009, 10:28:25 PM »
Dennis, Since Rich was nice enough to post Optimums Website I would like to take this opportunity to congratulate you on your cartouche award.  It couldn't have gone to a more deserving person( I know your wife should be congratulated too) plus what an exceptional website. www.AntiquityPeriodDesigns.com  I know most  if not all would like to thanks your for support to this organization. 

brasslady58

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  • Nancy Cogger Andersen-Owner of Londonderry Brasses
Re: Optimum Brasses (Authentic lost wax castings) UK
« Reply #8 on: March 20, 2009, 10:56:13 AM »
As owner of Londonderry Brasses, Ltd. and as a member of the SAPFM, I am concerned that if all of the SAPFM members start buying their hardware directly from Optimum Brassses, my business will suffer. Since Optimum is willing to sell directly to the public, I certainly can't fault anyone from buying directly from them if it will save some money in these trying financial times. To keep my business viable, I would appreciate any suggestions from SAPFM members of products or services which I could provide. Nancy Cogger Andersen

dkeller_nc

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Re: Optimum Brasses (Authentic lost wax castings) UK
« Reply #9 on: March 20, 2009, 11:57:32 AM »
Hi Nancy - I've a couple of suggestions that are hardware-related, though not specifically the niche business of cast-brass furniture ornamentation. 

I've had difficulty in the past finding iron screws that have at least an authentic look, if not authentic materials (wrought iron).  What I've turned to is removing that nasty zinc coating from straight-slot tapered wood screws, but the end result is still not really satisfactory.  In looking at period pieces, I've noticed that the iron screws used for H&L hinges, chest lifts and the like are slightly domed.  Other than scavenging them from antiques (not something I care to do - I'd rather see an antique repaired and refurbished than gutted for parts), there are no good sources for these that I've found.

Another potential opportunity is finding smaller chest strap hinges that would be appropriate for children's and miniature chests (at least miniature by the 18th century's standards - not the 1/12 scale that most modern miniaturists build to).  Horton and a few other sources sells hand-wrought hinges that have the 90 degree bend required to properly position the hinge, but to my knowledge, they're all in the 7" - 13" range.

Finally, to my knowledge there's no good source for miniature hardware on the scale of doll-house furniture.  One can buy very cheaply made "chippendale" brasses that are apparently all made by one factory in Asia, but there is no style selection, and the few that I've ordered are not well made.

Clearly, these are niches that don't have a huge market, but they're unfilled needs, at least as nearly as I can determine.  There might be an opportunity there if you can work some of your contacts to find someone to make these things.  I've considered it myself, but setting up a brass foundry is not exactly my interest nor expertise.
Period Furniture & Carving as a hobby - about 20 years woodworking

Jeff L Headley

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Re: Optimum Brasses (Authentic lost wax castings) UK
« Reply #10 on: March 20, 2009, 11:36:11 PM »
Please don't shoot the messenger. I feel bad about my posting now. I am in the same boat as Nancy with period reproductions from China. I do know that if I had a problem I would much rather deal with someone here in the states. Nancy, I do apologize. Jeff Headley
I never would have

ttalma

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Re: Optimum Brasses (Authentic lost wax castings) UK
« Reply #11 on: March 23, 2009, 07:59:43 AM »
Nancy, I for one will continue to buy from you. I'm probably one of your lowest volume customers. But when I've called to place and order or ask a question I've been made to feel like your best customer. Because of the way I've been treated a few dollars off an order isn't enough to make me switch.

And I agree with Dkeller a source for iron screws is really needed. I'm fortune enough to have about a 1/2 gallon of screws I inherited from my wife's grandfather. And I treat these like gold!

-Tim
« Last Edit: March 23, 2009, 08:02:40 AM by ttalma »
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