Western Horse, Palomino - OOAK Variation? Flank ripples!
Breyer's Western Horse was produced in palomino for longer than any other release on any mold. This icon of model horse collecting was made from 1951-1991. During that time, there were changes to his bridle, reins, and saddle, as well as numerous color variations, making him a fun model to collect.
This is a very interesting model that has all of us baffled. We've even checked with some big Western Horse collectors and no one has seen one like him before. There appears to be a mold difference with this guy: He has flank wrinkles on the right side. I know what you're thinking: It's probably not really a Breyer... Everything else about him indicates he is, though. He is made of Breyer's cellulose acetate, his paint job is typical, his mold mark is correct, and everything else about him identifies him as a Breyer. There is one other slight difference, though. He's almost 1/2" taller than his siblings. We wonder if these two variations are tied together - We know that temperature and humidity can cause size differences when the models are removed from the metal mold and allowed to cool. Perhaps whatever the weather conditions were when he was made also produced the little ripples on his right flank, and because they didn't detract from his appearance, he wasn't culled from the line. This is pure speculation on my part, but seems to fit with what we know about production.
There are three little ripples, and they appear only on his right flank. These flank ripples don't appear on any of the other Western Horses we've ever had, but they look like a part of the original design for the mold and don't appear out of place on the horse, which makes him an amazing variation!!!
He is in Excellent condition with some tiny rubs including one from his right tapadero rubbing on his girth-line (we've placed a bit of tissue paper between it and the horse for safety now, and some marks that may come off with a good bath. He shows minor yellowing which you can easily reverse with a few days of sunbathing. His hind feet are close together which can be corrected with a warm hair dryer, but he stands fine as-is. His reins are still nice and shiny, so he displays very well. From what we can tell, he's quite probably one-of-a-kind! I don't expect him to be here long, so if you love neat variations, grab him before someone else does!
We've included a couple of close-ups of the flank ripples from different angles, as well as a photo of him standing next to one of his brothers to show his incredible gigantism! (Other horse is listed separately; included here only to show scale.)
Breyer Model #57