Bakelite Objects

Bakelite Crib Toy

Bakelite Crib Toy

Information taken from Wikipedia.

In its industrial applications, Bakelite was particularly suitable for the emerging electrical and automobile industries because of its extraordinarily high resistance – not only to electricity, but to heat and chemical action. It was soon used for all nonconducting parts of radios and other electrical devices, such as bases and sockets for light bulbs and vacuum tubes, supports for electrical components, automobile distributor caps and other insulators.

Bakelite is used today for wire insulation, brake pads and related automotive components, and industrial electrical-related applications.

In the early 20th Century, it was found in myriad applications including saxophone mouthpieces, whistles, cameras, solid-body electric guitars, telephone housings and handsets, early machine guns, pistol grips, and appliance casings. In the pure form it was made into such articles as pipe stems, buttons, etc.

The thermosetting phenolic resin was at one point considered for the manufacture of coins, due to a shortage of traditional material; in 1943, Bakelite and other non-metal materials were tested for usage for the one cent coin in the US before the Mint settled on zinc-coated steel.[8][9]

After the Second World War, factories were retrofitted to produce Bakelite using a more efficient extrusion process which increased production and enabled the uses of Bakelite to extend into other genres: jewelry boxes, desk sets, clocks, radios, game pieces like chessmen, poker chips, billiard balls and Mah Jong sets. Kitchenware such as canisters and tableware were also made of Bakelite through the 1950s. Beads, bangles and earrings were produced by the Catalin Company which introduced 15 new colors in 1927. The creation of marbled Bakelite was also attributed to the Catalin Company. Translucent Bakelite jewelry, poker chips and other gaming items such as chess sets were also introduced in the 1940s under the Prystal Corporation name, however, its basic chemical composition remained the same.