What kind of material is this?

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Project by Mlke posted 1378 days ago 1061 views 0 times favorited 10 comments Add to Favorites Watch

it is extremelyyyy hard, seems to be some kind of plastic, but it also seems to have somewhat of a grain on the inside.
This salt shaker was given to my grandma in 1932 lol yupp 1932. so i have absolutely no idea what material this is…
it also seems like it was mounted on a lathe at some point- pic 4
Also, where do you think it’s from?

-- The hard work won't take too long, the impossible will take a little longer

10 comments so far

View Mlke's profile


119 posts in 1543 days

#1 posted 1378 days ago

Thanks, Mike

-- The hard work won't take too long, the impossible will take a little longer

View Grumpy's profile


19053 posts in 2349 days

#2 posted 1378 days ago

I don’t know but it is very ornate. First thought it looked oriental but perhaps the Americas’. Try posting it as a forum topic or a blog, you might get a wider response.

-- Grumpy - "Always look on the bright side of life"- Monty Python

View blackcherry's profile


3130 posts in 2321 days

#3 posted 1378 days ago

One can only guess, it appears like a burl and with it ornate appearance I would guess from a island. So my guess is Kona from the south pacific…BC

View EPJartisan's profile


933 posts in 1624 days

#4 posted 1378 days ago

I believe it is urea-formaldehyde. Had a short run in the 1920-1930’s, but discontinued due to toxicity as the resin cured. Sometimes wood fibers and dust filler was used to get colors and textures which mimicked wood grain. Developed in the same time period as Bakelite, which was not toxic. Guess which one made into the mainstream. If it is urea-formaldehyde… THAT salt shaker is worth a lot more than you think. My back ground is Industrial Design, my mind is filled with trinket of knowledge like this.. which I thought useless. If i am right maybe $60 grand of education was worth it… LOL.

-- the sacrifice of one's ego is the greatest gift to someone you respect

View TopamaxSurvivor's profile


14397 posts in 2174 days

#5 posted 1378 days ago

What if you are wrong? 60k down the tube? :-))

-- "some old things are lovely, warm still with life ... of the forgotten men who made them." - D.H. Lawrence

View savannah505's profile


1659 posts in 2084 days

#6 posted 1378 days ago

This is possibly soy bean, back around this time, before plastic was made from petroleum, soy bean was being developed into a plastic also. If you remember some of the older cars had a pinkish brown knobs on steering wheel, window crank handles, etc. Those were made from soy bean. EPJartisan might be right also, definitely worth checking into. Good luck.

-- Dan Wiggins

View DanCo's profile


66 posts in 1396 days

#7 posted 1378 days ago

Might be hapa wood. Lots of small tiki trinkets made from it.

-- Daniel

View bake's profile


308 posts in 2176 days

#8 posted 1377 days ago

I vote for Bakelite.

-- The only thing wrong with instant gratification is that it's not fast enough. Bake, Bar Lazy U Woodworks, Lehi,UT.

View Doe's profile (online now)


700 posts in 1328 days

#9 posted 223 days ago

Did you ever find out more about it?

-- Mother Nature talks, I try to listen

View Mlke's profile


119 posts in 1543 days

#10 posted 222 days ago

I would say it is either bakelite or soybean. It is artificial and definitely not any type of wood. But to be honest i’m not sure and it really doesn’t matter to me anymore lol

-- The hard work won't take too long, the impossible will take a little longer

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