Looking to buy used teeth
June 16, 2014 10:50 AM   Subscribe

Where can I find cheap dentures? Wholesale rejects, dental school models, or used - any would be fine by me.

I'm looking for several sets of dentures for an art project. I'm thinking five, can't imagine I'd need more than ten, tops. Last time I started something like this I just went on Craigslist in my city and said, "Hey, I need a pair of dentures. You've got a pair of dentures. Let me know how much you want" and I ended up paying $20 for a set. Something tells me I will exhaust my local market for used dentures long before I get as many pairs as I want.

Years back I called the denture manufacturer in my hometown and asked about rejects or retail sale but of course they were unwilling to sell to me, and I can understand that. Lawsuits are probably waiting right around the corner for anyone in their field who lets product out the door without good reason. I've found model sets for sale at a few dental supply stores but again I'm thinking they may not be open to Joe Public (or at the very least they don't have a 'click to add to cart!' button handy) and with the cheapest at $85 for a full set that's out of my price range anyway. An eBay searched turned up only one pair already bid up a bit higher than I want to spend.

If you have any leads - like if I somehow missed useddenturescheap.com or something - or any suggestions I'm all ears.

(though it's not necessarily relevant I have posted a temporary link in my profile to an example of what I'm using these for in the hopes of keeping this conversation focused on answering the question)
posted by komara to Media & Arts (13 answers total)
A nursing home? /dentist/dental training school? (maybe you can get last seasons or something!)
posted by tanktop at 10:55 AM on June 16, 2014

When I was searching tags I somehow missed this very similar question from 2008 which mentions funeral homes. Since I know a guy in that industry in my area perhaps I'll give him a ring.

Still leaving this open, of course, hoping for some other answers.
posted by komara at 10:57 AM on June 16, 2014

Does it have to be dentures? You can get cosmetic teeth on Amazon (some options are cheaper than the one I linked to).

Also, places like Aspen Dental have big boards of sample dentures, maybe they might sell you an old one cheaply.
posted by Marie Mon Dieu at 11:00 AM on June 16, 2014

Seriously, I just walked by a box full of these, just yesterday at a flea market. So You could try larger antique and flea markets. Also in NO there is a bizarre shop/museum, that was featured on the Oddities TV Show. Google Oddities in New Orleans and you'll find a few places.
posted by Gungho at 11:27 AM on June 16, 2014

I'm not sure if HIPAA regulations forbid it, but could you ask your local dentist for the molds they make mouthguards from? My dentist said they just usually throw the molds away, so I took mine home. (I thought it was cool looking!)
posted by jillithd at 11:34 AM on June 16, 2014

You might want to hit up ColdChef - he's super nice if you haven't met him already.
posted by radioamy at 11:40 AM on June 16, 2014

I always bury the dentures with the bodies. I can't imagine anyone who'd keep them.
posted by ColdChef at 12:09 PM on June 16, 2014 [6 favorites]

I have also seen boxes for sale at flea markets, so there is some sort of supply.
posted by Dip Flash at 12:34 PM on June 16, 2014

Do you have a regular dentist you go to? I'd start there. I had a science fair project as a kid that required human teeth and he set several aside for me to use.
posted by jabes at 12:50 PM on June 16, 2014

My dad has some temporary dentures that he'll be done with in a few months, but he kind of hangs on to old things, 'just in case.' I can always ask in a couple of months if you still need them.

posted by SLC Mom at 1:26 PM on June 16, 2014

Denturists (denture makers) and/or dentists often have access to disposable sets because patients are getting new ones.
posted by uncaken at 1:56 PM on June 16, 2014

Heard from someone in the teeth industry who wishes to remain anonymous. They confirmed:

- patients keep their old dentures when they get new ones
- denture labs can't legally make them without a prescription
- best bet: retirement homes, BINGO parlors, etc.

I have on my calendar this weekend to visit some of the larger flea markets here in the New Orleans area. I'll let you know if I get lucky.
posted by komara at 1:07 PM on June 17, 2014

I checked out our flea market and found nothing. Sad day indeed.
posted by komara at 9:01 AM on June 23, 2014

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