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Portland Trunk Manufacturing

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trunkman's loves700 of 4167Issac Libbey Trunk...Antique Trunk Red Metal Finish
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    Posted 4 years ago

    (1 item)

    This was my grandmothers trunk. I don't know much about it. Her initials were not W.H.B. I'm trying see if it is worth restoring. The redish brown areas appear to be leather. It's dried out and cracked and I was thinking about putting some kind of oil on it. Like linseed oil or tung oil. I'm afraid of doing anything to it for fear of decreasing it's value. You comments would be appreciated.

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    1. jscott0363 jscott0363, 4 years ago
      What a beautiful leather covered steamer trunk. This size and style was the true steamer trunk as they were designed to slide under your bunk on the steam ships. Based on the lock and latches, this would have been from the 1890 to early 1900's period.
      There are several products you could use on this to help preserve the beautiful leather covering. Leather Honey, Leather Rejuvenator or Mink Oil would be my choice of products to use. I have many leather trunks in my collection and those are the products that I typically use on them. Wonderful family heirloom you have here. Thanks for sharing and welcome to CW!!
    2. trunkman trunkman, 4 years ago
      Just as a precaution -- pretty sure that your trunk is not covered in leather but rather vulcanize fiber -- which unfortunately is hard to treat or restore other than a good cleaning. Restoring the hardware and cleaning the rest will make this look much better...
    3. trunkman trunkman, 4 years ago
      ps. How to tell its not leather-- run your fingernail along the cracking fiber -- notice there are no strands or bits coming off -- it will be like a hard plastic...
    4. jscott0363 jscott0363, 4 years ago
      Very good point trunkman! It never entered my mind that this could be covered in vulcanized fiber.
    5. trunkman trunkman, 4 years ago
      This aged red material mimics leather pretty closely... which was part of why it was used -- tends to be much more durable but does have a tendency to crack -- wonderful tack studding on this trunk -- imagine the time it took to put all those in!
    6. greendog greendog, 4 years ago
      Absolutely right trunkman, vulcanized fiber, same material used on old military trunks, you can use bondo sand and paint. neat looking trunk.
    7. bigjohn63051, 4 years ago
      Do think I should replace the leather handles? Do think it will lessen it's value? Do you know where I can get it appraised?
    8. bigjohn63051, 4 years ago
      Do you know if Portland Trunk Manufacturing is still in business? I Googled it, but nothing came up.
    9. greendog greendog, 4 years ago
      No, putting new leather handles will not lessen the value of your trunk, sorry to say but your trunk is worth around 100 dollars give or take a little but it belonged to your grandmother so that makes it priceless to you. I'd give it a good cleaning with Murphys oil soap and soft brush, very nice trunk.
    10. bigjohn63051, 4 years ago
      Thanks for all your help.

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