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Testing to Destruction claimed- "Natural Hetian Nephrite Jade Pendant"

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Author Topic: Testing to Destruction claimed- "Natural Hetian Nephrite Jade Pendant"  (Read 184 times)
Michael S Hoover - Redrummd
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« on: December 23, 2015, 06:54:10 pm »

There seems to be an unlimited supply of "jewelry" made from Jade on Ebay and other internet sale sites so I decided to test one piece from China that was sold as Natural Hetian Nephrite Jade. It was further described in the listing as "Natural material, natural color, perfect condition."

Here are the photos as I started the test.  Note that I had already taken a pick to the piece to see if what I thought was wax was indeed wax.  That is the white powdery stuff showing in the photo.

Note the nice green color of the piece even when backlit.




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Michael S Hoover - Redrummd
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« Reply #1 on: December 23, 2015, 06:58:13 pm »

Since my first test pick showed wax the first test was to heat the piece.  I think the photos do a pretty good job of disclosing the piece was not "natural color" for certain!





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Michael S Hoover - Redrummd
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« Reply #2 on: December 23, 2015, 07:00:06 pm »

So, I know it is stone for sure as I couldn't melt it and it really did look like Jade.  I sanded a spot and it sure looked to be Jade in the structure.



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Michael S Hoover - Redrummd
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« Reply #3 on: December 23, 2015, 07:05:06 pm »

Next I took a hammer to it and it was fairly tough.  It broke a bit more easily than I had expected for Jade but it was obviously not top grade Jade from the heating test as I could see a lot of internal  grain and "cracked ice"structures showing.



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Michael S Hoover - Redrummd
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« Reply #4 on: December 23, 2015, 07:07:39 pm »

I have a lower grade piece from the Kutcho mine that I used to hold part of the remains and they sure look similar.  I am certain it is Jade but not so sure it is Hetian Jade.  I cannot disprove that though.



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Michael S Hoover - Redrummd
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« Reply #5 on: December 23, 2015, 07:10:42 pm »

The MOHS test showed it was about as hard as  a MOHS 6 pick which lightly marked the piece while a 7 test pick clearly scratched it.  This is correct for many good Jade pieces.


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Michael S Hoover - Redrummd
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« Reply #6 on: December 23, 2015, 07:12:44 pm »

The last test was to see how it polished on the area I had sanded.  The piece took a glossy polish with the "scuff" polish technique I use.  In fact my fast test polish was far superior to the wax assisted polish it arrived with.


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« Reply #7 on: December 23, 2015, 07:38:04 pm »

Michael, thanks for the report!  It has been a long time since you've done a Testing to Destruction post.  It was fun seeing a new one!
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« Reply #8 on: December 23, 2015, 07:55:52 pm »

Michael;   

      Well, that was neat to see. But why is it the more I learn about Jade the less I seem to understand it??????  I hear that Hetian Jade is so scarce and valuable but as you said, it is all over e-bay for pennies. Same with Botryoidal Jade. Seems to be plenty available and people ask a lot of money for it. But the finished cabochons made from it are not that expensive. Maybe that is what is so mystical about Jade? Keep up the great information.
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« Reply #9 on: December 23, 2015, 07:56:15 pm »

Great info and results.

BTW: Never seen Hentian to polish to mirror polish. Its always a bit on the greasy side.

I'm surprised that it is jade at all.
I presume we got a lot more substitutes that actual jade in the markets here.
Hence, I rather buy the little jade that I would like to work with overseas, than anywhere here.

One exception though, I will try to get one stone that they call jade, next year. Absolutely black rind turning to near pure white or yellow, after about 3-5 mm. The contrast is just too delicious not to try, regardless to what the material really is.
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Michael S Hoover - Redrummd
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« Reply #10 on: December 23, 2015, 09:43:27 pm »

I assure all that more Hetian Jade is sold than can possibly be mined.  The reason I posted my BC Jade photo is due to it's rather remarkable match to what is being sold as Hetian.

Here is a link that really goes deeply into the China Jade market and specifically notes BC Jade being seen in China being sold as Hetian.

http://www.gia.edu/gia-news-research/nephrite-jade-road-evolution-green-nephrite-market
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« Reply #11 on: December 24, 2015, 09:10:32 am »

I bought this peice/block of tri colour jadeite at a thrift store and wanted to make sure it wasn't filled or waxed so it went on the stove and slowly heated to 400 and then cooled. I started with turquoise and an agate I had treated as test samples beside it but had to pull them at 175 as the fumes were prett rank.
you can just see the thermometer needle at 375 in this photo. 
sometimes the simple tests will tell a lot
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« Reply #12 on: December 24, 2015, 12:54:08 pm »

Mike:

When you polished it, it looked great.  Why would they put a colored waxy coating on it instead of just polishing it?

Ken S.
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Michael S Hoover - Redrummd
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« Reply #13 on: December 24, 2015, 01:36:00 pm »

Ken S. - I think a lot of the work is machined as they are all pretty much identical in where the lines are, the fins, and even the holes drilled in exactly the same spot.  They just rough sand, soak it in green wax and buff it to look polished.  The green dye is used as green Jade is much more valued and sought after than the greyish green it was naturally.
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« Reply #14 on: December 24, 2015, 02:02:46 pm »

Thanks Mike.  Makes sense.....increase the revenue per piece omg

Enjoy the season and have a Happy New Year.

Ken S.
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