Unpainted World War II British Soldier at Ease Yeknik Toy Soldier Collection
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Unpainted World War II British Soldier at Ease with peak cap Yeknik Toy Soldier Collection, figure unboxed, 54mm. Nicely cast, unpainted. These castings of toy soldiers are from the studio of the late Robert Yeknik of Grosse Pointe Michigan. He produced a very limited high quality line of toys soldiers known as “Soldiers by Bob.” These castings are from the workshop shelves of projects in progress, interrupted by his untimely death in 2014. Mr. Yeknik was an artist, craftsman and engineer who created all his own molds from novel masters. He gravity-cast his figures using traditional methods, employing a Linotype alloy of tin, antimony and lead. They are not playthings, but because of the lead content, were created for the adult collector. Bob’s attention to detail and meticulousness are evident in his workmanship. Bob cast numerous toy soldiers and figures for friends and collectors who enjoy painting their own toy soldiers. Not only did Bob cast toy soldiers but also train figures for his extensive G Gauge train collection. Focusing on circus trains Bob built nearly all of his rolling stock from scratch, using a combination of wood, metal and plastic to create circus cars with exquisite detail. One of his most popular road names was the Red Skippy Brothers line. Bob built circus wagons to house the animals and to transport them on flatcars to their next destination. The orange Skippy Brothers elephant boxcar along with the yellow Skippy Brothers horse boxcar are prime examples of the attention given to scratch building detail and painting. The circus wagons which were home to kangaroos, lions, a white polar bear, black bears, a rhino, tigers, monkeys and of course a giraffe exhibit showcase the workmanship of Bob’s skill for producing fine miniatures. At Christmas he would setup his trains throughout the house laying track that extended from room to room. Casting animal figures as well as railroad personal Bob added depth and beauty to his Christmas train layout. It was a sight to behold. Trains and Toy Soldiers is extremely proud to have placed his train cars and accessories in the hands of collectors who have a fine appreciation of art. Soldiers by Bob are now being offered as complete sets and as raw castings for those who aspire to the challenges of painting toy soldiers and figures.
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