Brittling and Disintegration of Italeri’s 1:72 Scale Confederate Infantry

Plastic Corrosion due to Oxygen and UV Radition

Brittling and Disintegration of Italeri’s 1:72 Scale Confederate Infantry.

Brittle and disintegrated Confederate Infantry originally produced by Italeri. These 1:72 miniatures were favourably reviewed in a Military Miniatures Magazine article published 31 January 1999. Since then, the thermoplastic polythene (PE), from which these figures were made, has become glassy. The miniatures snapped off at their feet, they lost arms, legs, heads, and weapons when handled. It was impossible to remove figures from the sprue with a sharp X-ACTO knife, diagonal pliers, or bare finger, without breaking them.

For the original figure review, 14 confederate infantry and one horse had been removed from the sprue, and they were then stored for nine years in an open cardboard box, shelved in a dry and relatively dark basement hobby room. During the same period of time, the figures still on the sprue were stored inside a closed wooden file cabinet in the same room. Accordingly, ultraviolet radiation may be ruled out as the sole cause of the brittleness of these Italeri miniatures. In fact, two of the 14 reviewed figures were slightly less brittle than other figures of the same pose which had remained on the sprue.

Plastic Corrosion of Collectible Miniatures