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Author Topic: Are old sawdust filled toys fine to collect?  (Read 346 times)

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Offline DappledHazel

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Are old sawdust filled toys fine to collect?
« on: February 27, 2018, 07:42:45 PM »
I'm quite new to collecting old stuffed animals and I was wondering about 60's sawdust filled stuffed animals, are these generally fine, if not is there a way to tell?
I found some really cute ones on eBay but when I mentioned it to a friend they said something about them probably being infested with mites and other bugs that could live off sawdust.
I apologize if this is a silly question but after hearing about possible bugs I'd like to know if this is something likely to occur or not?

The only thing I've really ever collected was ponies and other plastic stuff that can be easily taken apart and cleaned, but old stuffed animals not so much.


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« Last Edit: February 28, 2018, 02:19:25 AM by Kiwi »

Offline Khoufu

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Re: Are old sawdust filled toys fine to collect?
« Reply #1 on: February 27, 2018, 08:11:14 PM »
Personally I'd avoid buying those online unless it's from a collector community. If they get damp, it can be the end of the line for them. I had to toss out a sawdust filled Smurf plush cuz it started reeking of mold from the inside.
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Offline DappledHazel

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Re: Are old sawdust filled toys fine to collect?
« Reply #2 on: February 27, 2018, 09:41:31 PM »
Personally I'd avoid buying those online unless it's from a collector community. If they get damp, it can be the end of the line for them. I had to toss out a sawdust filled Smurf plush cuz it started reeking of mold from the inside.
I didn't even think about mold. I'm not sure if this one seller is a collector but the one they have listed looks clean and it still has the tags.

I wonder if re-stuffing them is possible, if it's bad enough or if the sawdust is a concern.

Offline Khoufu

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Re: Are old sawdust filled toys fine to collect?
« Reply #3 on: February 27, 2018, 10:02:03 PM »
I'd say restuffing is a case by case basis. Remove the stuffing, wash the fabric, and see if it's clean enough to keep. And always ALWAYS ask able any odors.
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Offline SaraMari

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Re: Are old sawdust filled toys fine to collect?
« Reply #4 on: February 27, 2018, 10:10:32 PM »
I think restuffing would be doable and a good idea. Although I don't know much about stuffed animals particularly antique ones I have seen many good restuffings on this site: https://doctorbeth.tumblr.com
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Offline DappledHazel

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Re: Are old sawdust filled toys fine to collect?
« Reply #5 on: February 27, 2018, 10:35:26 PM »
I think restuffing would be doable and a good idea. Although I don't know much about stuffed animals particularly antique ones I have seen many good restuffings on this site: https://doctorbeth.tumblr.com
That website is pretty helpful. I wasn't sure if re-stuffing toys were really a thing, especially for vintage stuff but they re-stuffed a few vintage ones. I might do that if I get one.

Offline tulagirl

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Re: Are old sawdust filled toys fine to collect?
« Reply #6 on: March 06, 2018, 11:42:40 PM »
Oh listen I have many of them. I have collected them for years. Here is what I do.  You shouldn't let what they are made of discourage you.  I put mine in the freezer in a baggy for a week.  These are fun items to have, if you try to wash them it can ruin them and if you try to de-stuff them you have destroyed their value.  Once I get mine out of the freezer I very carefully clean them on the outside and that is it.  I have not had any problems with mold and absolutely no problems with bugs.  Even my little panda one from the 1930's got really wet during our Hurricane damage and I managed to save her but the sawdust discolored her fur and there was no getting it out.  I buy them from collectors though.  I am also a huge vintage Steiff fan.  It is always a good idea to ask a seller if the item has any odor.  If not you will be fine. There have only been two items I had to destuff and they were not filled with sawdust they were full of real beans from like 1930 and that was just gross lol.  Hand made so it didn't mess them up to turn around and put Kapock in them.  I love these kinds of animals.  Just buy better, don't get the cheapest one  you can find, choose carefully. ;) 
« Last Edit: March 06, 2018, 11:49:36 PM by tulagirl »
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Offline DappledHazel

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Re: Are old sawdust filled toys fine to collect?
« Reply #7 on: April 12, 2018, 07:33:33 PM »
Oh listen I have many of them. I have collected them for years. Here is what I do.  You shouldn't let what they are made of discourage you.  I put mine in the freezer in a baggy for a week.  These are fun items to have, if you try to wash them it can ruin them and if you try to de-stuff them you have destroyed their value.  Once I get mine out of the freezer I very carefully clean them on the outside and that is it.  I have not had any problems with mold and absolutely no problems with bugs.  Even my little panda one from the 1930's got really wet during our Hurricane damage and I managed to save her but the sawdust discolored her fur and there was no getting it out.  I buy them from collectors though.  I am also a huge vintage Steiff fan.  It is always a good idea to ask a seller if the item has any odor.  If not you will be fine. There have only been two items I had to destuff and they were not filled with sawdust they were full of real beans from like 1930 and that was just gross lol.  Hand made so it didn't mess them up to turn around and put Kapock in them.  I love these kinds of animals.  Just buy better, don't get the cheapest one  you can find, choose carefully. ;)
Thanks for the response. I wasn't sure how common bugs would be for them. I have some sawdust filled toys as of now, and they all seem to be fine. Now that I have them, I've decided not to do anything to them. If I did have one re-stuffed I would probably have someone experienced do it, and I'd only do it if it was absolutely necessary. As in like, visible mold or odd smells, but none of them have that so they're fine.