The candle branches I ordered from the brass foundry on December 15th have arrived! Huzzah! Dealing with Marshall Brass is one of the most perfunctory experiences one is ever likely to encounter. Drawing blood from a stone would be a preferable undertaking, but despite the daunting ordeal, they do have an enormous inventory of brasses unrivalled by any other foundry which draws me back for those hard-to-find items.
Marshall offers several surface patinas including a convincing antique colour, but as I invariably end up finessing the brasses, I normally buy them ‘bright’. In this instance, core collapse had resulted in gross intrusions in the interiors of the candle sockets which would make it difficult to insert and withdraw candles.
The backs of the mounting plates had been touched with a grinder, but not sufficiently to render them flat.
All in all, I spent quite a few hours die-grinding, filing, scraping and buffing the candle branch components to an acceptable degree and then placed them in my Chambre des Horreurs (a larger version of the Bucket of Wrath) to attain a colour appropriate to their supposed vintage.
Normally steel screws are employed at this date for attaching brassware, but because the candle branches are front and centre on the girandoles, it is customary to use brass screws to mount them. I really don’t like brass screws, but in this application, they are appropriate and therefore necessary. I placed four slotted brass screws in with the rest of the brassware to be aged and I used these screws to fasten the mounting plates to the bottom frets of the girandoles.