Re: New to the forum but looking to collect beads can someone help me identfy these?? -- calumw789 Post Reply Edit Forum Where am I?
Posted by: Joyce Mail author
06/14/2015, 17:06:07

To take your money and run.....!

These are not amber, not copal, not phenolic either, in my opinion, but some quite newly made batch of beads of who-knows-what plastic material. Look at the perforations on both of these images, from the seller's offerings. One is jaggedy with a pointy area, with 2 suspicious looking blemishes. The other has visible grinding or file marks, showing that someone had to smooth some lumpy areas......For me, these are just not "right", but if not much more than opening price, not bad specimens to own as examples.

For reference:

wiki copal - the material is not fossilized yet

"River Amber" in the African trade is copal, it is fragile and not the best
material for beads. Here is what appears to me to be genuine copal, available from time to time from the African traders:

eBay item number:

From the first time I saw phenolics in the early 80s, right up to today, the term "copal" is used as some sort of ambiguous, mystical term to try sell beads. When the seller knows it isn't amber, but wishes it was, I suppose.

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