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Frankoma Planter #44

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I have this Frankoma piece, I guess it's a planter, green with brown highlights. About 19 inches long by 5 1/4 wide by 3 1/2 high. Molded into bottom is "Frankoma 44". Any ideas about age, value, etc.?

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The #44 is described as a Centerpiece. And, since it was made from 1953 to 1957. it could be Ada clay (up to 1955), or Sapulpa clay (after 1955). With Frankoma, the type of clay has a lot to do with value for most, but not all, of the pieces. But book value for the #44 is the same for both types of clay: $40-45. From your description, it sounds like yours has the Prairie Green glaze. Nice piece. And big, too.

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I have a similar piece with number 15 on the bottom, does anyone have information on the clay used for this item. Was it made earlier or later? Also, looks like it has some lime deposits on it, what is the best way to clean?

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The #15 piece is described as an oblong 12-inch planter. It was made from 1957 to 1977 -- a 20-year run, so it must have been a popular piece. It was made after Frankoma stopped using Ada clay, so it's definitely a Sapulpa clay piece, and is valued at $15-$20.

There may be other ways to remove lime stains, but one sure-fire method that won't harm your pottery is to fill it (I assume the lime stains are on the inside) with a 50/50 solution of white vinegar and water, and let it soak for 24 hours or so. Rinse it out, and the lime stains will either be gone or they can be removed with a brush or scrubber. There's also a cleaning agent called LimeAway that works very well on bathtubs, etc. It probably would not harm your pottery, but I would try the vinegar first.

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