To elaborate on my "new members" post, I enjoy researching older Sinclair dinosaur items. The early, realistic fiberglass Sinclair dinosaur statue has me stumped though, as to its age and manufacturer.
When did Sinclair make (or more likely have made for them) the very first generation of fiberglass dinosaurs that they displayed at service stations in the early 1960s and perhaps earlier?
These are few and far between. I have one, and have talked to the present owners of several others. Like me, they've found no makers marks and the original owners are unknown, dead or have memory issues. All they have in common is that they are known to have come from Sinclair originally.
The earliest photograph of one with a confirmed time frame is from the grand opening of a Wilmington, IL, station in 1963. I have a picture of one in a Chicago parade dated 1964 and Wes Maxwell has posted photos of one from 1966. Sinclair seems to have phased them out in favor of a more friendly looking design starting in 1964.
Does anyone remember seeing one of these before 1963?
As to manufacturers, I can tell you who didn't make them:
Jonas Studios - they made the 1964-65 World's Fair Dinoland life-size dinosaurs, but a member of the family confirms Jonas didn't make this earlier one.
International Fiberglass - They made the common, friendlier, more cartoonish 12' and 8' fiberglass dinosaurs we still see here and there from about 1963 until they went out of business in the mid 1970s. They also made these for customers other than Sinclair. I interviewed their former owner in the early 1990s and he said he didn't know who made the earlier Sinclair dinosaur. (Sinclair made molds off an International Fiberglass dinosaur and began reproducing them in in the late 1980s; they recently introduced a modified design with the head facing the other way.)
FAST - Fiberglass Animals Symbols and Trademarks of Sparta, WI. They and their corporate predecessors made fiberglass animals for decades, but a long-time manager says they didn't make the early Sinclair model.
So, none of the above three prominent makers of fiberglass animals in the 1960s made this Sinclair Brontosaurus. Would anyone know who did, and when?
(A previous owner of the one I have painted black lines just behind its head; I've painted those out already.)