Posted by J. Lauher on September 06, 2000 at 06:44:29:
In Reply to: Indian Darby's posted by Jack Coray on September 05, 2000 at 20:46:29:
There is actually a very large range to what
are known as Indian Darby's. First, they don't
necessarily come from India, it is a term often
used for any Asian (or even other third world)
The quality can vary quite a bit. I have a couple
examples of very nicely made ones. Solid with good
craftsmanship. I think they were very legitimately
used. Despite the quality I have not had to pay much
money for them because they are plentiful. After all India
is a very large country. Thousands of them have been
surplused in recent years. In particular they are easy
to find in England's antique markets.
On the other hand there are also newly made very
cheap Darby style handcuffs that are also flooding
the antique market today. They are very crude and
don't look the least bit old. Dealers are
paying no more than $10 for them. The dealers
then price them as high as you can imagine. As
I mention in an earlier remark, last spring I
bought a pair from one dealer for $17 (he had
dozens), but I saw the exact same type
from another dealer for $250. Of course if you
can sell one at $250 you make more money than
selling a dozen at $17.
The one you show in the photo looks pretty standard.
It does not look as crude as the $17 model I
mention above, but it does not look particularly
old either. With a little hunting you can
certainly find examples like it well under $50.
It really comes down to how much you like it.
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