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C A Taylor Trunk

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Posted 6 years ago

(2 items)

Hello, this is my first time posting here. I have an old trunk that was left in my garage when I bought my home. It is in pretty rough shape and I thought about refurbishing it myself. I am pretty handy, that is what makes me think I can do it. If anyone has any suggestions, all would be appreciated. I don't know anything about the trunk and have been looking on the internet for one that looks like it, but haven't really come across anything. I have read that most were made for automobiles since they did not have trunks when they first came out. The tag picture is pretty blurry but it says C A Taylor Trunk Works above the big red T, then it says Taylor Made in the middle (Taylor on one side of the T and Made on the other side), then at the bottom it say Chicago New York. I could not find any kind of serial or model number on it. The latch says MIautoLock on it. I assume that is an I after the M, but it is hard to tell. On the very back of the trunk it has what appears to be a way to hook it onto an automobile.
I was wondering how old this trunk actually is and is it worth anything. I am actually thinking of turning it into a blanket chest and lining it with cedar. Don't know if that is a good idea or not, but it is a thought. Any information would be appreciated. Thanks.

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  1. trunkman trunkman, 6 years ago
    Thank you for your post -- I must have missed it that day! As you know this is an auto mobile trunk, probably around the 1920's or 30's. I am not really knowledgeable about these types of trunks, but I will say that this is a nice example. Taylor trunks were a very good brand of trunks, with a higher quality of workmanship than others of their day. As to value I cannot comment as I do not know your market area. In terms of refinishing, it becomes a personal choice. I have finished many trunks, some are on my site, and the ones I choose to finish are because the outside canvas no longer looks desirable, or I intend to keep it and I like a refinished trunk. I believe this trunk would look great refinished if it is not plywood under the black paint. There is not a large dollar amount on this type of trunk (I think there are more trunks that have survived than the cars that used them) so the question becomes what you would like to do with it. It makes a great blanket trunk because your can open it against a wall. If you want to keep it for your own use then with no investment upfront there is little to loose in refinishing it, and sometimes you increase the value (at least for certain types) if it is done well. Hope this helps a little.
  2. Mattijd, 6 years ago
    Thanks Trunkman, I appreciate the feedback. I had no idea this trunk was that old. Unfortunately I believe it does have plywood, but it is a metal outside skin under the black paint. Does that make it impossible to refinish? I do intend to keep it and like you said, make a blanket trunk out of it. I have never refinished one so it would be a learning experience also. Any pointers would be appreciated. Thanks again for responding.
  3. trunkman trunkman, 6 years ago
    You can easily take off all of the paint with a liquid furniture stripper from a local hardware store. It is a messy job but I love doing it. Paint on the stripper and with a scrapper take off as much paint as you can one section at a time. When you have got as much as you can that way move on to steel wool medium grade and use it to get the residual paint off with the same stripper. (use rubber gloves) have lots of newspaper on hand to wipe the blade of the scrapper. Use fine grade steel wool for the final go over -- and you can use the stripper on the metal banding, and the steel will come through. Plywood is not a nice as wood to finish, and I would recommend a darker stain. It is all totally doable, and if you are not happy with the results it can always be repainted. If you want further pointers let me know. Cheers!

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