The Fourth Kingdom

Animal, vegetable, mineral--and Bakelite!
     Posted By: Paul - Sat Feb 10, 2018
     Category: Technology | Advertising | Industry, Factories and Manufacturing | Products | 1930s

They're not entirely wrong, at that. Bakelite was indeed the second (after celluloid) of a whole new range of materials. Even today, we see "plastics" as not quite fitting in the old three worlds.
Posted by Richard Bos on 02/11/18 at 01:23 PM
My mother was an inveterate hunter of Bakelite jewelry from this period. In order to separate the fake modern reproductions from the real stuff, she showed me how: she would have a large blunt sewing needle that she would heat up with a cigarette lighter and apply the hot needle to an inconspicuous part of the item in question. If the resulting tiny wisp of smoke smelled like burning hair, you had a genuine Bakelite item.
Posted by KDP on 02/12/18 at 01:39 PM
@ KDP -- Sadly, they can now fake that. They make a pin-sized hole, assuming the customer would test in the same spot rather than risk further defacing the item, and paint the area with a chemical which produces the same thiols when burned. When the chemical is dry, it's invisible.
Posted by Phideaux on 02/12/18 at 11:51 PM
Kingdom shmingdom. They're all only atoms and molecules. We just mixes 'em up.
Posted by Virtual on 02/13/18 at 09:14 AM
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