What does one want to collect when it comes to rare whistles ?? Ivory whistles ?? Bone whistles ( or is there overlap ? ) Then there are hoof whistles, horn whistles, wooden whistles, plastic whistles, tin whistles, silver whistles , brass,. copper, nickle silver — ad infinitum — get the point ?? What to do ?? Good question >>>>>>>>>>>>>>> SPECIALIZE !!!!
Gotta, or you will go insane, be tooooo spread out and what can you then accomplish?? It is not all for show is it ??? Just to say, hey man, look at my whistles…..I'll tell ya, THAT won't get far. There has to be a higher calling don't you think ??
So where are 'the bargains' you might ask ( again ) ? After all, who has that much money these days to be buying everything one wants. If I was going to do it all over again, perhaps ivory and bone. They aren't toooooo expensive – surprisingly. AND they are very interestingly made. They feeeeel great to the touch too, which satisfies that cravieng for fatty foods.
On the other hand there are some terrific old whistles made of horn or hooves which would be fun and relatively inexpensive. And beyond that perhaps wooden ones. Plastic is scary for me to think about — thousands of them and yet cheap for the most part, which does have it's intrinsic appeal. Silver on the other hand is or can be VERY expensive, just by the very nature of the beast. No brainer there.
Here is one for you if you are reading ( rather covertly I might add ) — wait for it— wait for it — PEWTER !!!! and it's even less touted brother — britannia ( small case ) VERY under rated whistles dating back to the mid 1800s.
We have here about 50 or so and always looking. Those whistle friends across the sea in France ( thought I was gonna say UK huh ? ) really made an art of whistle design of pewter and especially britannia. Of course the advantage of the latter is that you could plate it and then watch it over the years disintegrate off.
Personally I disdain pure tin, or steel ( sorry tin guys, ironic since pewter is 90% tin huh ? ) just too light and rusty and dented or bendable, cheaper feeling than plaaaaaaastic ….. yech …. I guess hate mail would be better than NO mail.
Did I mention sirens, antlers, trench whistles, bosun whistles, penny whistles …..