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This is a bit of an unusual request, as it concerns proof set boxes, rather than the coins. I've managed, at long last, to acquire a 1893 short set box, which will allow me to house my reconstituted set. The box I have found is structurally sound, has a decent interior, plus working hinges and clasp. All in all, it isn't too bad. However, the exterior is quite scuffed and looks in need of some TLC. So, my questions are, does anybody know what these boxes were made from so far as the finish is concerned? Are they leather? How is the texture and glossy finish achieved? I'm looking to do a painstaking clean, recolouring with stain/paint and a tiny brush, plus a refinish of the surface, somewhat like Suzie Fletcher who works with leather in the Repair Shop programme on the BBC. Or maybe the lady who conserves works of art on the same programme. The starting point for this has to be to understand what material I am dealing with, and to be honest, I'm not sure what it is. It seems similar to the finish of the 1927 sets, but I can't be sure. 

So, anybody got any ideas? Or any suggestions. The box, by the way, is not the black dated box, but is a Royal Mint box with the coat of arms in gold on it, similar to but not the same as the 1927 type. 

Thanks in advance.

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Information from the Royal Mint describes the 1927 box as "leather case" if it helps.

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I think its probably worth phoning or sending an email to the Royal mint museum Dave or phoning them to ask who to send the enquiry to.

Probably got a better chance of an answer from them than on here 👍

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These cardboard boxes are genuine.

The 1927 set was issued with a choice of leather case or cardboard box. Sets in cardboard boxes were issued at a price of 15 shillings. Sets in leather cases cost 6 shillings more at one pound and one shilling.

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Good advice regarding the RM. I'll give them a try. Many thanks for the suggestion.

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4 hours ago, Sword said:

These cardboard boxes are genuine.

The 1927 set was issued with a choice of leather case or cardboard box. Sets in cardboard boxes were issued at a price of 15 shillings. Sets in leather cases cost 6 shillings more at one pound and one shilling.

So why did the RM advise that the 1927 set was in a leather case when plainly it was issued in at least two formats?

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2 hours ago, ozjohn said:

So why did the RM advise that the 1927 set was in a leather case when plainly it was issued in at least two formats?

The leather case was obviously the one to buy .

Cardboard for the plebs , hey wait 75p each , I will have four , darn they are sold out.......

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I have never seen a 1927 set in other than the cardboard. And I even have the set that was given to Derwent Wood's widow by the RM for his uniface reverse designs for the new coinage. The insert was black on that set. I also have a 1927 matte set that came from the Pretoria mint collection that similarly had a cardboard case. I would say that these would be somewhat exclusive, and yet no leather case.

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46 minutes ago, VickySilver said:

I have never seen a 1927 set in other than the cardboard. And I even have the set that was given to Derwent Wood's widow by the RM for his uniface reverse designs for the new coinage. The insert was black on that set. I also have a 1927 matte set that came from the Pretoria mint collection that similarly had a cardboard case. I would say that these would be somewhat exclusive, and yet no leather case.

My 1927 set is as originally issued and is in a leather case, not a cardboard box.

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3 hours ago, VickySilver said:

I have never seen a 1927 set in other than the cardboard. 

I think more than half the 1927 sets for sale in the UK are in leather cases. They do look rather smart.

E.g. 

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/203507359175?chn=ps&norover=1&mkevt=1&mkrid=710-134428-41853-0&mkcid=2&itemid=203507359175&targetid=1281240839185&device=c&mktype=pla&googleloc=1007246&poi=&campaignid=12126078237&mkgroupid=117862863250&rlsatarget=pla-1281240839185&abcId=9300480&merchantid=116637687&gclid=EAIaIQobChMI0cnSsOPW8QIVB-rtCh0O7g2AEAQYAiABEgIte_D_BwE

4 hours ago, VickySilver said:

And I even have the set that was given to Derwent Wood's widow by the RM for his uniface reverse designs for the new coinage. The insert was black on that set.

This is a prototype box as the standard all have white inserts. A prototype box for a set of prototype coins make sense to me as the leather cases might only be available later on.

 

 

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5 hours ago, VickySilver said:

I have never seen a 1927 set in other than the cardboard. And I even have the set that was given to Derwent Wood's widow by the RM for his uniface reverse designs for the new coinage. The insert was black on that set. I also have a 1927 matte set that came from the Pretoria mint collection that similarly had a cardboard case. I would say that these would be somewhat exclusive, and yet no leather case.

Mine's in cardboard too.

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On 7/9/2021 at 5:20 AM, DaveG38 said:

This is a bit of an unusual request, as it concerns proof set boxes, rather than the coins. I've managed, at long last, to acquire a 1893 short set box, which will allow me to house my reconstituted set. The box I have found is structurally sound, has a decent interior, plus working hinges and clasp. All in all, it isn't too bad. However, the exterior is quite scuffed and looks in need of some TLC. So, my questions are, does anybody know what these boxes were made from so far as the finish is concerned? Are they leather? How is the texture and glossy finish achieved? I'm looking to do a painstaking clean, recolouring with stain/paint and a tiny brush, plus a refinish of the surface, somewhat like Suzie Fletcher who works with leather in the Repair Shop programme on the BBC. Or maybe the lady who conserves works of art on the same programme. The starting point for this has to be to understand what material I am dealing with, and to be honest, I'm not sure what it is. It seems similar to the finish of the 1927 sets, but I can't be sure. 

So, anybody got any ideas? Or any suggestions. The box, by the way, is not the black dated box, but is a Royal Mint box with the coat of arms in gold on it, similar to but not the same as the 1927 type. 

Thanks in advance.

The original boxes are leather on timber frame and the maroon leather is very thin and textured to look like shagreen or shark skin. A high quality leather preservative would be fine nothing lumpy that can get into the texture and be hard to polish out. Be carefull of reproduction cases the quality of the arms print is a give away it should be very sharp and three dimensional.

1893 short set case top sml2.JPG

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Nice set, really a good one.  I still do not understand how what are likely the top sets would not get this box.

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510318497_20130920_122537sml.thumb.jpg.133d7a6f9b2dc1591745dcb66cfc03fe.jpg

21 minutes ago, VickySilver said:

Nice set, really a good one.  I still do not understand how what are likely the top sets would not get this box.

You can see here from the official RM pamphlet that the silver set case cost almost as much as the coins and cabinets were all the vogue for storage - so yes they are very rare

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3 hours ago, shagreen said:

The original boxes are leather on timber frame and the maroon leather is very thin and textured to look like shagreen or shark skin. A high quality leather preservative would be fine nothing lumpy that can get into the texture and be hard to polish out. Be carefull of reproduction cases the quality of the arms print is a give away it should be very sharp and three dimensional.

1893 short set case top sml2.JPG

Thank you for this. My own box is nowhere near as nice as yours, although with some careful colouring and the use of hide food or equivalent, I'm hoping mine will improve considerably. I'm always impressed with the way in which leather responds to being fed!!

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If you had a time machine maybe you could have used this stuff

leathersausce.jpg

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I've just finished conserving my 1893 short proof set box, and I thought I would share the results. The first pic shows the box in its original state with dozens of scuffs, a broken wooden lid and damaged hinge. I've now re-glued the wood, repaired the hinge and used acrylic paint to touch up the scuffs, followed by a couple of treatments with with hide food. The results are in the second pic. I must say that I'm very pleased with the results. The box hasn't been restored to brand new, but it does look very much nicer than it did when I got it. Just need to visit the bank to put the coins in, and then its onto the next project of sourcing a 1887 set plus box!! Sorry about the slightly blurry image of the second pic. 1361874583_1893ProofSetBoxPre-conservation.jpg.1a8554afee722f874fc85890065e69f1.jpg627587731_1893ProofSetBoxAfterconservation.thumb.jpg.0116987ccbbbb8a5ff3b096c8b3ffb0a.jpg

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A beautiful result that not many would have the skill or inclination to attempt. If I may ask, how long did it take to achieve?

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13 hours ago, Zo Arms said:

A beautiful result that not many would have the skill or inclination to attempt. If I may ask, how long did it take to achieve?

Not that long. Glueing the lid back together took about 10 minutes plus a day's drying time. Repairing the hinge, just a few minutes to drift the pin out slightly, fold the hinge back in place and drift the hinge pin back again. The longest part of the leather restore was actually mixing the acrylic paints to get as close to the original shade as possible. Then it was just a case of touching up the scuffs and using a finger to spread the paint evenly to blend it in. Touching up, took about 20 minutes. Once dry a couple of coats of hide food plus buffing out took about 5 minutes each.

So, overall working time was no more than an hour, maybe a shade over, all spread out over a couple of days to allow for drying times. Not too onerous realy, and not much real skill needed either. Just a bit of patience and a little knowledge on how to treat leather - been watching Susie on 'The Repair Shop' to gather the knowledge needed.

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I agree, an excellent result! The cardboard hard to do much with sadly and just not so attractive in any case (my Derwent Wood case).

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On 7/18/2021 at 2:23 PM, shagreen said:

510318497_20130920_122537sml.thumb.jpg.133d7a6f9b2dc1591745dcb66cfc03fe.jpg

You can see here from the official RM pamphlet that the silver set case cost almost as much as the coins and cabinets were all the vogue for storage - so yes they are very rare

I'm not convinced the prices reflect rarity of any particular box, rather the work involved. You have a base cost for materials which won't vary much whatever the contents, but the 4 hole gold would be cheaper than the 6 hole silver, and the 10 hole long set involves the most indents to form.

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