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Thursday, April 8, 2010

Today's Word: SPELTER

SPELTER is a zinc alloy used in the manufacture of figures. It is a cheap alternative to bronze, but almost impossible to repair if broken. Used since the mid 19th century, it was a very popular in the manufacture of miniature figures, which were then cold painted (like Vienna bronzes), as well as items like candlesticks, and larger statues, which were often "bronzed" over the alloy's dark gray patina to look more impressive (and sometimes to deceive). If scratched, a bright silver color will be revealed under the dark patina.

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