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Identifying Quartz vs Glass


#1

My mother-in-law gave me an old necklace of three strands of faceted clear beads. I was thinking it was glass, but suddenly it occurred to me that it might be quartz.

It does feel colder on the tongue, it does scratch glass, and I don’t see any bubbles (or inclusions, for that matter) under the loupe. But the facet edges are abraded with minor chips - would quartz do that?

Thank you!


#2

If you have some glass beads, you can compare them with the suspected quartz in these two ways:

Listen carefully to the sound the glass beads make when you put them in your hand and let them clink together, kind-of like dropping against each other, and then do the same with the quartz beads. It’s difficult to describe, but the quartz makes a pleasantly sweet clinking sound, while the sound the glass beads make is more dull.

But before you handle the beads, hold the glass in one hand and the quartz in your other hand, and you will notice the temperature difference.


#3

Thanks Betty2!! Based on what you said, I really think think they could be quartz, although the differences were subtle. They are strung differently, the possible quartz beads on knotted cord, and the glass on more rigid nylon…so that might affect the feel and sound of them clinking.
One thing I noticed - the glass necklace and the mystery necklace were in the same bag together, and when I louped the glass beads, I saw they are much more abraded than the necklace of interest. If that happened while they were together in the bag, it also makes sense that this would be quartz.
Anyway, thanks for your input. :star_struck:


#4

If you look at glass beads using a 10X loupe you will see tiny spherical air bubbles. Quartz will not have air bubbles.