Joined: Mon Oct 06, 2008 6:13 pm Posts: 4971 Location: Australia
Aha, the second if it is the Aussie material is normally called Dragon stone, apparently it is a fuchsitic chert. Glenn Archer would be able to fill you in more on that one Barbra. No doubt he'll have some at Tucson along with a couple of new goodies.
Joined: Sat Jul 11, 2009 10:29 am Posts: 928 Location: USA
Those beads are same as "Crabb fire agate", just dyed different colors. Some are natural agates that are heat quenched bleached and dyed, some get heated too muchcand become essentially quartz glass now, while others are totally fake and are man-made silica glass from the beginning.
The others could be any number of dyed jaspers! Or any number of renamed natural jaspers that are typically heavily stabilized because they are unstable completely, without massive epoxy or resins impregnation they'd just fall apart and crumble and typically natural tone dyes are mixed in with the epoxy and redun, or any number of odd composite stones I've been seeing lately!
They are bits and pieces of natural all put back together using pressure and resins or epoxies. Sometimes with or with dying first.
Some are powdered rocks mixed with epoxies or resins and dyes and other things and pressed under pressure into blocks.
Some of completely artically created pieces that are some sort of resins that are dyed, then patterns drawn into them with other dyes or materials, etc.
The ingenious fakes they're producing lately could easily fool even most Gemologists that aren't upto par on agates and jaspers and those sorts of gemstone materials nor current treatments, synthetics, simulant, and composite materials out there on the market!
Recent got a lapis cab, sold as untreated and natural, but could see in pics, and selling price something awry. Arrived, hmm. Looks real, bit odd. Maybe just stabilized. Cut It in half, NOT. ENTIRE stone is a composite replica of lapis! Core was a porcelain like material, thinner layer of composite dyed blue material around outside, then some fake pyrite mixed in even!
Another looked to be natural stabilized jasper. Cut It in Half. Scope evaluation. Again, multiple pieces put like a puzzle, add pressure, assuming some heat, and epoxies or resins and pressure until sets. Now you have an assembled jasper. But at least this material looks great and cuts nicely, and usable if advertised for what it is, a man assembled composition of natural smaller pieces. materials, smooth, step up from a normal mosaic, lol.
Some are just flat out full fakes. Like Above, using crushed material mixed with resin or epoxy to create base material. Then other stuff used to artistically paint and draw and whatever they can into the cabs to get them looking like real natural materials.
The attention to details and results, quite impressive if just sold as what they are. But until then, troublesome gos fakes that many will likely miss! Sadly!
They are essentially no different then glass pieces, ceramic pieces, or porcelain pieces, just faked to appear like natural untreated agates and jaspers!
I'm working on compiling a full list of ALL agates and jaspers and chalcedonies with their names and locales. As well as a fake name list, lol. All legit known agates and jaspers do have proper names.
Safe to say that the large large majority of cabochons, beads, pendant pieces, etc. in agates, jaspers, chalcedony, and many even normal faceted gemstones, coming out of China are FAKES! They're almost all glass like or just composite materials, but all essentially man-made now and without any disclosure! I trust NOTHING out of China anymore! Add them to the list! The majority's favorite past times seems to be lying and cheating anymore! Scary actually!
But use serious caution! Even half the specimens coming out of China for collectors are pieces glued into/onto other pieces, synthetics grown on natural host materials, synthetics or glass cut and polished partially to look like natural crystals, etc. None disclosed and all sold as the "natural untreated" variant of their fakes!
Joined: Fri Feb 24, 2006 1:20 am Posts: 2638 Location: Southern California, U.S.A.
Good rant Swishman. But not all the fake gems are coming out of China. The 1970s' American turquoise craze set off a new U.S. industry devoted to making compressed "Block" imitations of natural turquoise in an amazing variety of colors and patterns. (That's the bits and pieces of dyed natural material held together by epoxies and formed into a single "block" of whatever natural material being copied.)
Successful marketing of the imitation turquoise led to "block" imitations of many other non-single-crystal materials: sugilite, lapis, malachite, azurite and malachite, coral, rhodonite, variscite, various types of shell, charoite, ivory, even fake dinosaur bone, obsidian and much more. See the product list from this Arizona company http://www.rtresearch.net/
I know of a German company that markets out of Bangkok selling similar "block" materials They're no doubt widely used in the Thai and Chinese cutting industries. I'm sure there are other suppliers as well.
This stuff has been on the market for at least 35 years. I recall taking a cruise from Los Angeles to Acapulco in the 1990s and all the beach vendors were hawking silver jewelry set with various "block" materials.
I agree the "Dragon Vein" beads are dyed and otherwise treated. The so-called "jasper" images Barbra posted have the appearance of a natural material but you all know the problems with ID-ing stones from images.
Joined: Sat Jul 11, 2009 10:29 am Posts: 928 Location: USA
Definitely not just China.
Just the materials I was referring to are China. They are flooding the cabochon market with fakes by the hundreds to thousands daily! It's insane the amount of artistic talent being put into these fakes, enough so that disclosure would create a market for them for what they are, I guarantee it! But the Chinese are known for scams and fraud big time. They've been doing it with art, antiquities, and big time with coin collecting, reproduction of all of them and then selling as the real deal. :/.
But it is a certain lines of them that I'm. Referring to are only coming out of China. Purchased direct from them actually. . Not to mention all the synthetic quartz being ground into everything from normal quartz crystals to tourmaline to beryl crystals and sound as natural crystals of that variety. :/.
Very familiar with the other fakes. They, at least many, came about for knife makers actually. They needed sturdier and more cost effective ways of using the natural materials in their work. :/. I still use the real thing for my knife and pistol handles, lol.
Plus, it's still the Chinese flooding them cut into the market as the natural untreated real deal! That's what's bothering me, not the creation of them, but the misuse of them by the Chinese sellers and suppliers. As Bad with the fakes as Thais & Indians are with lack of treatments disclose now. And the Afghani/Pakistani lies about no irradiation treatment on their maxi blue with bleeding, lol, aquamarine, irradiation of the poor pale aqua for Heliodor, spodumene, apatite, etc. One tried it today, lol! Maxi blue towards bottom bleeding out through tubes into rest, normal blue below, then to golden bright Heliodor at the top, roflmao! Nope, not nuked and cooked at all, lol. Even quartz in matrix on base turned smoky, lol.
Big mess, just creating more! The more fraud they knowingly introduce and misrepresent, the lower it drives the value of the natural untreated goods. :/.
I am a gemology newbie, and certainly don't question that the "dragon vein agate" in the picture is fake or that *lots* of Chinese "gemstones" are fake.
However, some google searching suggests that the terminology of "dragon vein agate" or "dragon veins in agate" might be standard in the far east. Here is a wikipedia discussion on Dzi beads: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dzi_bead
which contains the sentence:
New etched agate dzi are also highly prized as long as they are well made, contain the traditional patterns, and are made from genuine agate without "dragon skin" or "dragon veins"
So "dragon skin agate" and "dragon vein agate" might be recognized terms for describing agate in that part of the world, even though they are not officially designated varieties.
Thank you, I was looking at some "Dragon Vein Agate" that looked so much like manufactured beads..... very unnatural looking colors and patterns though (Etsy and Ebay) claims of being "Natural" stone... I don't like to buy on ebay anymore, several refunds for items that were clearly synthetic (one had seams), arguments about beads not as pictured and currently, wondering about some "natural" clear quartz that looks more like glass beads than any of my other natural quartz beads... and I'm not able to tell the difference... I don't want to sell jewelry with these beads as Natural Quartz until I am certain I was concerned, I contacted the seller and they replied "no one has thought they were glass before" instead of saying, they are not glass.... semantics or evasion? the pity is my last visit to local Gem Faire, I had the same experience, sellers offering glass beads as unusual natural beads now with strange new metaphysical qualities....
an unpleasant trend I need to work on my bead recognition skills....
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