Daily Wire Tip Sept. 8: Camel Bone Authenticity

By on September 7, 2011
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Daily Wire Jewelry Making Tip for
September 8, 2011

Question:

I read the articles on the Wire-Sculpture Blog about ivory, and was wondering that is there any specific test for checking the authenticity of camel bone craft.

-Irtiza in Karachi, Pakistan

Answer:

Whenever someone has a question about ivory or bone, I turn to our experts on those subjects, Faculty member Mary Bailey and her husband Joe who had this to say:

Bone is bone and camel bone is not that special. It is a more dense bone, highly favored by carvers because due to its density it has the weight and feel of elephant ivory and does polish up with a high gloss like ivory. Camel bone will still exhibit the tiny little pore openings that catch rouge and everything, just like cow bone.

Guitar makers like to use camel bone as the inset on the part of the guitar that the strings rest on, and to make guitar picks, etc. The same hot needle test will tell you it is bone since it will scorch and smell. If someone is trying to sell you something and keeps quoting that it is camel bone and wants a ridiculous price for it, then avoid it! True, some highly intricate carvings are done using camel bone, and in that case you are paying for the high level of creativity, not the material it is made from.

For all our all Pearl & Ivory Tips, simply click here: Pearls and Ivory.

Answer contributed by Dale "Cougar" Armstrong

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One Comment

  1. avatar

    Jane Elizabeth

    September 8, 2011 at 9:45 am

    Great info on the “camel bone” issue… I love reading and learning with my morning coffee!

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