Stories from Farfrae Farm

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Call the Vet! A Vintage Restoration Adventure

While fooling around on eBay, I came across a lot of vintage models - there were three adults, two foals, and three riders.

The pictures were a little frightening and the auction description was anything but encouraging. But...I had fallen in love with the pinto pony's cute little face and decided to keep an eye on the bidding.

I then forgot about the whole thing until my phone reminded me shortly before the end of the auction.

The price hadn't gone very high, so I decided to try my luck and placed a low bid. To my surprise I won and I immediately named the pinto pony "Cheeky".

I paid on Sunday, the models were shipped on Monday from Jersey, and they arrived Tuesday afternoon, talk about service!

Opening the box was a bit like opening a grave; all of the models were in various stages of decay though they still retained their Julipy charm.

There were no surprises, the models were exactly as described, but actually holding them in my hands and thinking about how I was going to bring them back to life was a bit daunting.

Cheeky and Jubilee, the black yearling, were my first projects, Cheeky because he was my favourite, and Jubilee because I couldn't bear staring at her mangled head and legs.

Somehow Comus snuck into this repair group, too. He was quite hard, had rather chewed legs, and his paint was rippled all over.

All the models required extensive restoration as their latex was heavily degraded, but I have tried to keep as close as possible to their original shape, colour, and markings.

Last started, first finished I suppose. I thought Comus would be an easy fix as he looked like he just needed a little patching, but after he got a new shoulder, he turned to goo.

If I was doing this again, I would have completely removed and resculpted his hind legs as they went marshmallow soft and have given me nothing but trouble. As it is, he's 98% original under his Milliput; only his ears and mane have been replaced.

He turned out a bit darker than his original bay and I couldn't resist giving him a proper black mane and tail this time. I'm ridiculously pleased with his eyes which I painted with the help of his Before picture.

All of the models had intact heads except for Jubilee; hers was a chewed, mushed nightmare. I think her head might be a bit longer than usual for this mold, but it is very similar to the reference picture I was using of another vintage Yearling.

Her leg position is fairly true to how she hardened, I just tweaked it a bit to make her stand properly. She had a large blaze when she arrived, but closer inspection proved this to be an old touch-up. Her current star is more like her original facial marking.

I tried to rehair her with the original hair, but the glue plugs were too thick. I have managed to incorporate her original tail hair into her mane.

Cheeky has proven true to his name and has been the most difficult. His legs and ears have been completely resculpted and he has been encased in Milliput to stabilize his gooey, yet crumbling body.

He's not white, but a light ivory/grey, a nod to his aged and yellowed original paint. His pattern has been duplicated as closely as possible from his Before pictures and his hair is original.