• Become a Pearl Insider!

    Register as a member today for exclusive access to, member only insider info, incredible contests to exotic locations, and have your questions answered by pearl experts from around the world.

    Join the community today. Just click Register at the top!

Candliing My Earrings

Camelotshadow

Well-known member
Joined
Jun 12, 2017
Messages
362
Looking with a new eye to pearls on top the maglite.

I can see a bead in the Miki 7.7mm of about 1mm nacre

I think I can also see the bead in an old 7mm with 1mm bacre.

An older pair of 8.2 mm looks like a bead with a nacre of 1.5mm to 1.7mm

Now the tough ones

A very old pair of pearls with old mine cut diamonds is showing what looks like banding but it goes all the way to the end of the pearl & a bead shoudl not be that big n an old pearl...I can't see a bacre line & the pearl looks the same all the way through...will try to get a pic.

Suspect 9,2mm yellow south sea is not showing a bead...looks same yellow

Supposed white south sea 8.3 mm off round with diamonds from 40's can't really see a bead..looks all pearl /7 /i see what looks like a bubble near the surface???? They are pearlls not glass/. The buuble is too close to the surface & would be within 1mm so that should be nacre in a cultured pearl...

What should look for next? Some sort of appear natural???

That one with stripes is odd

Pics
1 2 stripes on maybe 8mm earringsfrom 1930 no besd seen
34 Suspect yellow south sea 9.2mm on old 40's 50's plat setting? no bead seen
56 8.3 mm off round pearls on 1940 circa settings no bead seen
7 7.7mm miki 2005 bead w about 1mm nacre
8 old 8.2mm bead with about 1,5 1,7mm nacre

Does that look about right?
 

Attachments

  • Candle Old mine band P1030060.jpg
    Candle Old mine band P1030060.jpg
    26.3 KB · Views: 0
  • Candle Old mine band P1030061.jpg
    Candle Old mine band P1030061.jpg
    28.4 KB · Views: 0
  • Candle yellow SSP P1030069.jpg
    Candle yellow SSP P1030069.jpg
    31 KB · Views: 0
  • Candle yellow SSP P1030072.jpg
    Candle yellow SSP P1030072.jpg
    32.3 KB · Views: 0
  • Candle whiite old trans SSP P1030077.jpg
    Candle whiite old trans SSP P1030077.jpg
    27.2 KB · Views: 0
  • Candle whiite old trans SSP P1030081.jpg
    Candle whiite old trans SSP P1030081.jpg
    30.1 KB · Views: 0
  • Candle Miki 7.7 P1030082.jpg
    Candle Miki 7.7 P1030082.jpg
    31.2 KB · Views: 0
  • Candle 8.2mm  P1030091.jpg
    Candle 8.2mm P1030091.jpg
    31.5 KB · Views: 0

Camelotshadow

Well-known member
Joined
Jun 12, 2017
Messages
362
Candle of bubble on top portion of 8.3mm earrings L w trans dis next to the striped 8mm omc pearl R
 

Attachments

  • Candle bubble 8.3mm otc  & 8mm omc P1030114.jpg
    Candle bubble 8.3mm otc & 8mm omc P1030114.jpg
    30.4 KB · Views: 0

Lagoon Island Pearls

Well-known member
Joined
Dec 8, 2009
Messages
1,913
Looking with a new eye to pearls on top the maglite.

I can see a bead in the Miki 7.7mm of about 1mm nacre

I think I can also see the bead in an old 7mm with 1mm bacre.

An older pair of 8.2 mm looks like a bead with a nacre of 1.5mm to 1.7mm

Now the tough ones

A very old pair of pearls with old mine cut diamonds is showing what looks like banding but it goes all the way to the end of the pearl & a bead shoudl not be that big n an old pearl...I can't see a bacre line & the pearl looks the same all the way through...will try to get a pic.

Suspect 9,2mm yellow south sea is not showing a bead...looks same yellow

Supposed white south sea 8.3 mm off round with diamonds from 40's can't really see a bead..looks all pearl /7 /i see what looks like a bubble near the surface???? They are pearlls not glass/. The buuble is too close to the surface & would be within 1mm so that should be nacre in a cultured pearl...

What should look for next? Some sort of appear natural???

That one with stripes is odd

Pics
1 2 stripes on maybe 8mm earringsfrom 1930 no besd seen
34 Suspect yellow south sea 9.2mm on old 40's 50's plat setting? no bead seen
56 8.3 mm off round pearls on 1940 circa settings no bead seen
7 7.7mm miki 2005 bead w about 1mm nacre
8 old 8.2mm bead with about 1,5 1,7mm nacre

Does that look about right?

Nice work. Candling is an effective method of gathering glimpses into the origin of pearls. In many instances, a single view is suitable, but I try to impress views from all 3 axis. Understanding of course, it's just not possible in many pieces.

Thin nacre on cultured pearls is not easily viewed, no less captured in an ad hoc setting. However, images with no visible streaks, patches or signatures are presumed cultural in origin. After all, an entire shell bead is the nucleus and contains no onset structures.

The striations (parallel lines) visible on some nuclei denote nuclei created from Mississippi River washboard mussels. They present with semi-translucent (brown colored) growth fronts and will almost always appear in candled views.

Likewise, the views of bubble-like signatures are recognized. Again, these are growth properties which are apparent only slightly sub-surface. The absence of visible nuclear material at the core and juvenile growth at the edges is not a feature observed in natural pearls, unless the pearl became dislodged from the sac, then reformed elsewhere within the anatomy of the mollusk. In which case, nuclear signatures would be present in the view (even though a small sampling may not). However, in this case. The overall geometric symmetry of these are near perfect roundness, which broadly precludes natural formation.

All of these pearls are cultural origin. Thank you for sharing them with us.
 

Camelotshadow

Well-known member
Joined
Jun 12, 2017
Messages
362
OK just making sure esp in the gold south sea as quite a few are very old pearl settings esp the one withe the stripes as its border line pre culture days...

What are these visible streaks, patches or signatures I should look for? Is there a site with pictures I can check out?

I can't imagine how that bubble stayed & nacre formed around it & it is close to the surface. Could it have been a sack of something filled with gas & the gas was trapped inside?

I just don;t want to throw back a natural yellow south sea pearl. I can't see anything inside that one.

As for MrStripy ...I guess the bead nucleus are generally whitish shell? MOP can have growth lines which could show through but I am surprised in the very old pearl that the stripes appear to go right to the edge & I would think an old pearl would have least 1mm of nacre. If that pearl is period to settings it would likely be 1920's as old mine cuts were from 1890's & faded out in the 20's 30's & it would have to be one of the very early cultures that is unlless the pearls were switched at a later date..

How do you try to get good photos's?
 
Last edited:

Camelotshadow

Well-known member
Joined
Jun 12, 2017
Messages
362
OK old ring from 1930's to maybe 40's s its maked WG for white gold when white gold was first introduced...

First & last pics show most details looks to be a darker round center? This pearl does not really sing akoya so have been curious about it.

I have an old mikimoto from 30/40's
i'll candle it & see what it looks like

Has to be differences in the old cultures. YOu should see more nacre.
 

Attachments

  • Candle 8.3 mm 30s ring 1030132.jpg
    Candle 8.3 mm 30s ring 1030132.jpg
    58.2 KB · Views: 0
  • Candle 8.3 mm 30s ring P1030116.jpg
    Candle 8.3 mm 30s ring P1030116.jpg
    27.7 KB · Views: 0
  • Candle 8.3 mm 30s ring P1030120.jpg
    Candle 8.3 mm 30s ring P1030120.jpg
    36.4 KB · Views: 0
  • Candle 8.3 mm 30s ring P1030122.jpg
    Candle 8.3 mm 30s ring P1030122.jpg
    34.2 KB · Views: 0
  • Candle 8.3 mm 30s ring P1030124.jpg
    Candle 8.3 mm 30s ring P1030124.jpg
    49.1 KB · Views: 0
  • Candle 8.3 mm 30s ring P1030133.jpg
    Candle 8.3 mm 30s ring P1030133.jpg
    54.1 KB · Views: 0

Lagoon Island Pearls

Well-known member
Joined
Dec 8, 2009
Messages
1,913
What are these visible streaks, patches or signatures I should look for? Is there a site with pictures I can check out?

I notice you've visited this page.

I can't imagine how that bubble stayed & nacre formed around it & it is close to the surface. Could it have been a sack of something filled with gas & the gas was trapped inside?

It not gas. Juvenile growth is different than adult growth. The former is mainly protein, while the latter is largely aragonite... even calcite in over mature specimens. The transition between the two leaves distinguishing signatures. Likewise, pearls grow from the inside out, not the opposite.

I just don;t want to throw back a natural yellow south sea pearl. I can't see anything inside that one.

Natural pearls almost always have distinct features at or near the center. Again as mentioned earlier, patches of conchiolin are visible in the views at the point of onset. While many of one type of natural pearl... myostracial origin present with no visible nuclei, they're often tiny and multiple pearls are found within the same specimen. Only infinitesimally would a large, near perfectly round nature present with no visible nucleus.

As for MrStripy ...I guess the bead nucleus are generally whitish shell? MOP can have growth lines which could show through but I am surprised in the very old pearl that the stripes appear to go right to the edge & I would think an old pearl would have least 1mm of nacre. If that pearl is period to settings it would likely be 1920's as old mine cuts were from 1890's & faded out in the 20's 30's & it would have to be one of the very early cultures that is unlless the pearls were switched at a later date..

Rather than repeating a long winded explanation of molluskan growth, here's an candled image of a washboard mussel nucleus. Not only does it show the growth fronts, it also depicts evidence as why shells cannot be ground then faked as pearls.

candled_nuke.jpg

How do you try to get good photos's?

Trial and error, lots of it. Take plenty of frames. Use a DSLR, or a digital pocket camera with macro or super macro settings. Even most modern cell phone cameras fail macro for scientific analysis documentation. Use a mini tripod or set the camera on or against objects to take steady captures.

Better yet, use a USB microscope. They're inexpensive and simple to install and use.
 

Lagoon Island Pearls

Well-known member
Joined
Dec 8, 2009
Messages
1,913
OK old ring from 1930's to maybe 40's s its maked WG for white gold when white gold was first introduced...

First & last pics show most details looks to be a darker round center? This pearl does not really sing akoya so have been curious about it.

I have an old mikimoto from 30/40's
i'll candle it & see what it looks like

Has to be differences in the old cultures. You should see more nacre.

Not necessarily. Pearls could have been harvested at any stage of growth during any given decade. Unless of course they're Tahitian, which up until now have minimum thickness requirements to be market ready. Besides that, black pearls don't candle well.

What you're seeing is diffusion. Equal and central. Again, cultural traits. Natural pearl nuclei present as eccentric, distorted and with readily discernible contrasts. FWP present with somewhat similar features as naturals, but uniformly across a broad sampling. Natural nuclei are like snowflakes, no two are alike.
 

Camelotshadow

Well-known member
Joined
Jun 12, 2017
Messages
362
WOW Iwill try to digest...

Thanks I've been researching jewelery since the 80's. I went to sotherbys as did my Professor of jewlery appraisal at FIT & we both thought there natural strand was cultured by checking out the drill holes. I really would have thought they xrayed it but who knows?

Going on cultured pearl process in infancy in 1916 them most pre 1920 jewelry with original pearls are natural

Cultured is fine for me as they have size & roundness but I always look at the older pieces for natural pearls.

Miki is set in an old dress clip so hard to candle & did not come out that well but appears

I like trying to see the nacre thickness when there is not drill hole for me to take a peek.

Its OK if Mr stripey is most;y river nucleus. I only paid $200 for it & it has 2 .10 ct old mine cut diamonds & is in 14K & its pretty nice color for an oldie.

I'm also happy if I am correctly seeing the nucleus outline & the 2004 miki is 1mm as they have been cutting the culture time & I could not get a min thickness out of the salesperson. Probably a 6.5mm nucleus on that 7.75mm pearl?
 
Last edited:

cmd2014

Well-known member
Joined
Sep 18, 2014
Messages
308
Nice work. Candling is an effective method of gathering glimpses into the origin of pearls. In many instances, a single view is suitable, but I try to impress views from all 3 axis. Understanding of course, it's just not possible in many pieces.

Thin nacre on cultured pearls is not easily viewed, no less captured in an ad hoc setting. However, images with no visible streaks, patches or signatures are presumed cultural in origin. After all, an entire shell bead is the nucleus and contains no onset structures.

The striations (parallel lines) visible on some nuclei denote nuclei created from Mississippi River washboard mussels. They present with semi-translucent (brown colored) growth fronts and will almost always appear in candled views.

Likewise, the views of bubble-like signatures are recognized. Again, these are growth properties which are apparent only slightly sub-surface. The absence of visible nuclear material at the core and juvenile growth at the edges is not a feature observed in natural pearls, unless the pearl became dislodged from the sac, then reformed elsewhere within the anatomy of the mollusk. In which case, nuclear signatures would be present in the view (even though a small sampling may not). However, in this case. The overall geometric symmetry of these are near perfect roundness, which broadly precludes natural formation.

All of these pearls are cultural origin. Thank you for sharing them with us.

Dave,

I think at the end of the day, camelotshadow is trying to figure out what kind of pearls she has, especially the yellow ones. It sounds like you have ruled out natural gold south sea pearls as a possibility. Would you say based on what you can see, are these bead nucleated GSS pearls, or are they more likely shell nucleated freshwater pearls?
 

Camelotshadow

Well-known member
Joined
Jun 12, 2017
Messages
362
Yes would be interested in that! If they are from the 60's or before should not be shell nucleated freshwater?

rouble is I cant see a nucleus or a nacre line so is the nacre that thin or is the bead that small?

I may take a few more pics from more sides as I might keep them for the platinum settings & would like to know more about them

I almost want to soak one off & look at the drill hole

Thanks
 

Camelotshadow

Well-known member
Joined
Jun 12, 2017
Messages
362
Might have caught a nacre ring or its an illusion of some sort of overtone in center that looks like a nucleus but in lasy pic it looks like its on the right edge & in many pics its seems to change radius & location
 

Attachments

  • Cand;e yellow nacre ring P1030214.jpg
    Cand;e yellow nacre ring P1030214.jpg
    44 KB · Views: 0
  • Cand;e yellow P1030205.jpg
    Cand;e yellow P1030205.jpg
    50.1 KB · Views: 0
  • Cand;e yellow P1030208.jpg
    Cand;e yellow P1030208.jpg
    41.8 KB · Views: 0
  • Cand;le yellow nacre ring P1030215.jpg
    Cand;le yellow nacre ring P1030215.jpg
    52.8 KB · Views: 0
  • Cand;le yellow nacre ring P1030221.jpg
    Cand;le yellow nacre ring P1030221.jpg
    38.1 KB · Views: 0
  • Cand;le yellow nacre ring P1030237.jpg
    Cand;le yellow nacre ring P1030237.jpg
    111.8 KB · Views: 0
  • Cand;le yellow nacre ring P1030238.jpg
    Cand;le yellow nacre ring P1030238.jpg
    112.7 KB · Views: 0
  • Cand;le yellow nacre ring P1030254.jpg
    Cand;le yellow nacre ring P1030254.jpg
    38.5 KB · Views: 0

Camelotshadow

Well-known member
Joined
Jun 12, 2017
Messages
362
Is the nacre psossibly this thin?
 

Attachments

  • Cand;le yellow nacre thin P1030241 red.jpg
    Cand;le yellow nacre thin P1030241 red.jpg
    59.4 KB · Views: 0
  • SS 9.2mm  P1160371.jpg
    SS 9.2mm P1160371.jpg
    46 KB · Views: 0
  • SS 9.2mm  P1160377.jpg
    SS 9.2mm P1160377.jpg
    95 KB · Views: 0
  • SS Gold 9.2mm Plat  RING P1020953.jpg
    SS Gold 9.2mm Plat RING P1020953.jpg
    43.3 KB · Views: 0
Last edited:

Camelotshadow

Well-known member
Joined
Jun 12, 2017
Messages
362
Figured I add pictures to show what the pearls looks like in natural light

Mr Stripey first... found out it likley has a mississpi river shell nucleus & looks like thin nacre

2nd unknown 8.3mm white pearl w transitional diamonds with 1mm nacre visible
 

Attachments

  • SS 8.3otc vs 8mm omc P1020434.jpg
    SS 8.3otc vs 8mm omc P1020434.jpg
    31.4 KB · Views: 1
  • SS 8.3 mm .21 ct G SI 18K X P1020206.jpg
    SS 8.3 mm .21 ct G SI 18K X P1020206.jpg
    19.9 KB · Views: 1
  • SS 8,3mm P1020279.jpg
    SS 8,3mm P1020279.jpg
    63.9 KB · Views: 1
  • SS 8,3mm P1020282.jpg
    SS 8,3mm P1020282.jpg
    43.7 KB · Views: 1
Top