Yixing Ware

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So, my parents gave us a set of yixing teaware for Christmas, labelled
"Tang Chaoxing Purple Teapots."  They smelled right, the color seemed
right, but I really don't have any idea how to tell if this stuff is real
or not.

So... I took it into work and asked the mass spectro guys to put it in
the machine.  They did, and they got this out:

Element   %   +/-
------- ----- ----
Si      46.08 0.19
Fe      28.31 0.19
Al      21.72 0.20
Ti       2.05 0.14
Mn       2.22 0.06
V        0.22 0.06
P        0.20 0.01
Zr       0.16 0.00
Pb       0.02 0.01

This resulted in all of the nondestructive testing people hanging out and
asking "what the hell IS this?"  I'm guessing it is real yixing from the
high iron content, although now I am really curious what form of iron salt
is actually in there.  The detectable lead content is probably worrisome
to somebody.  But what is with the titanium?  Does it just come along for
free with the alumina?

Anyway, I found this interesting and if this helps anyone else identify
yixing ware, feel free to use it.  The stuff definitely does have some
magnetic properties; it will change inductance of a coil if it's in the
middle, like a ferrite.  The ND guys kept asking if it was actually a  
ferrite.  I'm not sure what to say...
--scott


--  
"C'est un Nagra. C'est suisse, et tres, tres precis."

Re: Yixing Ware
On 2015-02-20 01:22:21 +0000, Scott Dorsey said:

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The "real" red yixing ran out in the 1970s or so.  There are several  
substitutes on the market varying in color from red (not the same lode  
of clay as the original) to purple to brown.  In the past it seems that  
yixing clay of varying shades was used as well.

Since manufacturers of these products do not seem interested in details  
about the production of their wares, it's tough to say for certain that  
we know much of anything about them.  The high aluminum content in your  
sample is suspicious to me though - seems way too high.  The Chinese  
are sneaky and have been known to put all kinds of fillers into things  
if they can get away with it.

If you can acquire a few samples of the older ware, preferably  
pre-industrial, and have the mass spectro guys run those too I think it  
would be most helpful.

Thanks for the post.


Re: Yixing Ware
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I did not realize that this was the case.  This would explain a lot about
the current state of the market, indeed.

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If I actually had such samples, I would run them, but barring that I  
spoke to Jon Singer who knows both tea and pottery, and I include here
part of his reply by permission:

Jon Singer writes:
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Quoted text here. Click to load it

That is all.
--scott

--  
"C'est un Nagra. C'est suisse, et tres, tres precis."

Re: Yixing Ware
Very interesting post.  Thanks a lot.

I would like to obtain some of the "real deal" but I am afraid that it  
is going to be difficult to obtain.  Keeping my eye on TAS and local  
thrift stores seems like about all I can do short of prying the wallet  
open to the tune of several hundred dollars.


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