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December 16, 2017, 08:33:49 pm
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Floaters

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Author Topic: Floaters  (Read 376 times)
Wattana
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« on: June 18, 2015, 02:01:32 am »

Hi All,

It's been pretty quiet on the forum lately, so I thought I'd resurrect an old theme - floater bottles. Since the last thread on this topic is a couple of years old I am going to start a fresh one here.

For those newer members who are not familiar with the term, 'floater' is snuff bottle collectors' jargon for any hardstone bottle which is so well hollowed that it will float in water. Many of them are fairly plain looking bottles at first glance. It is only when you pick one up and handle it that you notice an unexpected lightness of weight.

Description:
Translucent pale mushroom tone agate snuff bottle of compressed rounded rectangular form with cylindrical neck, flat lip, a raised footrim, and tao'tie mask and ring handles at the shoulders; extremely well hollowed to reveal a natural cloudy effect. Celadon green jade stopper with black collar.

Height without stopper:  5.8 cm

The material of this bottle is sometimes referred to as 'cloudy' agate, and is often described as being reminiscent of the dappled effect created by sunlight on a sandy sea-bed. It is a common characteristic of botryoidal agate that has been hollowed to an extreme thinness, as in this example.


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* Q055.1f-lo.jpg (108.58 KB, 600x480 - viewed 11 times.)

* Q055.1g-lo.jpg (105.27 KB, 600x480 - viewed 11 times.)
« Last Edit: June 18, 2015, 11:28:25 am by Wattana » Report Spam   Logged

Tom
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« Reply #1 on: June 18, 2015, 03:33:59 am »

Dear Tom,
thank you for this thread. Very nice bottle. I would like to add a personal note, not related to our bottle in particular but to the hollowing itself. Until not long ago, I inherently accepted that well hollowing is equal to old bottles. If the bottle is well hollowed it means that it must be old. But recently I have seen so many bottles extremely well hollowed which was no doubt new, so I think that today with the CNC machine it must be easy to work a bottle perfectly. The machine must have a vision system that precisely evaluate the shape of the bottle and then you just have to tell to the machine which thickness of the wall you want.
It must be so in my opinion. That is the reason why some time ago I did ask how to recognize an hand carved inner surface. But I understand that it is not a so simple thing, because there are old hand carved bottles which inner surface is perfectly smooth as the outside.
Not simple task!
Kind regards
Giovanni
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Wattana
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« Reply #2 on: June 18, 2015, 05:41:52 am »

Dear Giovanni,

Thank you. You make a very valid point. And, quite honestly, a quite scary one too. I imagine that a correctly programmed drilling machine can hollow out a bottle to almost paper thinness.

So, ultimately, we must look for small signs of imperfection on the interior surface to show that hand tools were used to create the hollowing.

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Tom
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Tom
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Joey
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« Reply #3 on: June 18, 2015, 07:29:19 am »

Dear Tom,
       A glorious example of a floater. Thank you for posting it.

Dear Giovanni,
      You are correct and as Tom said, it is scary. And it goes back to the importance of provenance when buying antique examples. One must have incontrovertible proof that the object was acquired before the 'CNC machines' you mentioned were in use.

Best,
Joey
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Joey Silver, collecting snuff bottles since Feb.1970

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« Reply #4 on: June 18, 2015, 08:15:31 am »

Dear Tom,

Thank you for sharing a wonderful example!

Love the bottle, I even see a bird or a airplane in the cloud.Smiley Wink

Steven

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Wattana
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« Reply #5 on: June 18, 2015, 08:57:07 am »


Love the bottle, I even see a bird or a airplane in the cloud.Smiley Wink


Dear Steven,
     Ha....ha. If it's an airplane then the bottle must be 20th century. If you can tell me the model of plane I can narrow down the dating even further.  Wink

Dear Joey and Giovanni,
     Thank you for your kind comments.

Tom
« Last Edit: June 18, 2015, 08:58:51 am by Wattana » Report Spam   Logged

Tom
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« Reply #6 on: June 18, 2015, 10:19:28 am »

Really a beautiful botryoidal example, and thank you for bringing a topic to life within the public forum Tom.

I am not up on modern CNC or DNC Machines, but have never seen either used within the interior of an object.   
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Wattana
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« Reply #7 on: June 18, 2015, 11:30:04 am »

George,

"....but I have never seen either used within the interior of an object."

Let's hope it stays that way.
And thanks for giving me the correct spelling for botryoidal.  Wink
« Last Edit: June 18, 2015, 11:31:39 am by Wattana » Report Spam   Logged

Tom
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Joey
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« Reply #8 on: June 18, 2015, 11:53:25 am »

Dear George,
    I don't know what the initials stand for (CNC / DNC), but I have noticed bottles which I KNOW are totally modern,  but very well hollowed out, in the last few years. How is it being done?
    Mr. Yang told me a few years ago (either in 2010 or 2012) that in China they had machines which could be used to hollow out bottles much better and quicker now.
Best,
Joey
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Joey Silver, collecting snuff bottles since Feb.1970

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« Reply #9 on: June 18, 2015, 12:55:03 pm »

Dear Joey,
CNC stay for Computer Numeric Control, and it is related to machining center that can do practically anything, converting a CAD (Computer Aided Design) drawing into a real object.
But it is not only that. Many years ago I did work with artificial vision systems, they were a new technology at the time. I went to Massachusetts visiting one of the pioneering Companies that work with that, the Company was founded by scientists and researchers coming from the MIT. At that time the electronic devices was very complex, while now, that technology is available in a simple card that can be inserted into a computer. Well, I have not the slightest doubt that today you can simply show a bottle to a CNC machine equipped with a vision system, a bottle of any shape, not necessarily symmetrical, and then just tell to the machine that you want it carved with a thickness of one millimeter and voilà, the machine does that without failing. No need of programming, drawings, etc. I have never seen such machine, but no doubt all this can be easily done today.
To have a further idea, just consider that the extreme miniaturization of most modern electronics, like Iphones and so on, it is only possible thanks to the artificial vision systems. The machine that place the minuscule components on the small electronic card is not driven by a program, but by a vision system instead. The machine take the device to be placed, looks at the card, detect the inserting place, calculate the location and the distance  and then place it. If you rotate the card, the machine rotate the device. All this at an incredible speed.
As you, I have seen recently so many bottles really well carved, but hey, too much well carved, too much perfect, and without any sign of wear. Perfectly polished. If Mr. Yang told you that, he must have been referring to such machines.
Kind regards
Giovanni
« Last Edit: June 18, 2015, 12:56:52 pm by Fiveroosters » Report Spam   Logged

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« Reply #10 on: June 18, 2015, 02:04:49 pm »

Dear Giovanni,
     Yes, I agree with you. That is what Mr. Yang must have been referring to.
Thank you for the info; I'm amazed.
Best Wishes,
Joey
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Joey Silver, collecting snuff bottles since Feb.1970

Wattana
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« Reply #11 on: June 25, 2015, 02:00:53 am »

Well, it's been so quiet on the forum lately, so I'm posting another floater bottle. As with the last one, this one doesn't really stand out and shout at you. You really need to spend time with it and handle it to appreciate its subtler qualities. An impeccably carved and finished bottle, relying only on its rich depth of colour for decoration - a case of 'less is more'.

Description:
Deep amber tone agate snuff bottle of rounded rectangular shape with a slightly waisted cylindrical neck, and resting on a raised footrim, very well hollowed, with  mask and ring handles at the shoulders, and polished to a high gloss finish. Pale greenish-white jade stopper with a black collar.

Height without stopper:  5.8 cm


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* Q056.1e-lo.jpg (139.31 KB, 600x750 - viewed 12 times.)

* Q056.1f-lo.jpg (117.31 KB, 600x480 - viewed 10 times.)

* Q056.1g-lo.jpg (119.4 KB, 600x480 - viewed 12 times.)
« Last Edit: June 25, 2015, 10:02:09 pm by Wattana » Report Spam   Logged

Tom
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« Reply #12 on: June 25, 2015, 07:52:49 am »

Dear Tom,
    Another beauty with 'shibui' from your collection. Wonderful!
Thank you for posting it.
joey
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Joey Silver, collecting snuff bottles since Feb.1970

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« Reply #13 on: June 25, 2015, 10:49:01 am »

Tom,

Immaculate and wonderful bottles as usual.  Thanks for sharing these “floaters”.

Charll
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Charll K Stoneman, Eureka, California USA, Collector Since 1979.

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« Reply #14 on: June 25, 2015, 11:54:24 am »

Stunning and beautiful in every way !

Very nice !
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« Reply #15 on: June 25, 2015, 12:00:27 pm »

Very nice bottle dear Tom, I particularly like the shape of the neck.
Congratulations.
Giovanni
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« Reply #16 on: June 25, 2015, 10:27:33 pm »

Tom

This is a clean crisp 'understated' bottle and I can see why you like it...  so do I ... 
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« Reply #17 on: June 26, 2015, 02:15:37 am »

Thank you all for your encouraging comments....!
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Tom
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« Reply #18 on: June 26, 2015, 11:54:20 am »

Dear Tom,

Thank you for sharing!

This bottle can be set as a standard for Top quality bottle. I would love the handle it one day if I have a chance.

Steven
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« Reply #19 on: June 27, 2015, 06:53:20 am »

Dear Steven,

I am not sure when and where, but I have a good feeling that chance will come up one day.  Wink

Tom
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Tom
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