Heat not a furnace for your foe so hot that it do singe yourself.
William Shakespeare, Henry VIII
16 July 2012—The Bard was wise in so many ways. Although he penned those words hundreds of years ago, they still resonate with truth, for humans have changed but little from his day. Yes, we have new togs and toys, but all else remains unchanged.
Speaking of new playthings, the Chinese New Year rang in a number of fascinating developments in regard to the International School of Gemology's eBay account. Prior to that, virtually all the visible purchases were gems or mineral specimens, along with the occasional bulk gemmo equipment deal.
But starting in mid-February 2012, purchases that would normally be associated with someone interested in treating gems started to show up. We're talking hard consonants here, crucibles, chemicals and a kiln. What follows is a brief timeline of events and eBay finds made by none other than the International School of Gemology's Robert James. Note that some dates in the images are not exact, as they represent items where multiple units were available.
Abduriyim/Emmett/Hughes/McClure/Peretti/Rossman/Schorr Tucson Panel on andesine, where samples of untreated rough from four separate localities were given to the attendees.
GJX show in Tucson ends.
International School of Gemology's Robert James buys three new graphite crucibles on eBay.
Robert James of the World Gem Society / International School of Gemology buys a parcel of two graphite melting dishes and two graphite crucibles. Vendor states that one of the melting dishes and one of the crucibles are annealed.
Robert James of the World Gem Society / International School of Gemology buys a molybdenum crucible liner.
Robert James of the World Gem Society (WSG) issues the Critical Andesine Update which states:
- The Tucson samples contain molybdenum.
- The Tucson samples have threads embedded into a "glassy glaze".
- The "glassy glaze" is quartz.
Robert James of the World Gem Society / International School of Gemology buys 3 lbs of copper sulphate.
International School of Gemology's Robert James buys a kiln capable of heating up to 1232°C (2250°F).
Robert James of the World Gem Society / International School of Gemology buys 3 lbs of pure sulphur powder.
Robert James of the World Gem Society / International School of Gemology buys 1 lb of atomised pure copper powder.
Amidst this gushing geyser of gear acquisition, on April 13, Robert James and his International School of Gemology issues the Crucible Relics on Andesine newsflash in which is claimed:
- The "glassy glaze" on the Tucson samples is no longer quartz, but now sodium silicate (aka "water glass").
- The Tucson samples have copper sulphide on them and "it can be created in a lab by heating copper in the presence of sulfur". As seen in the Robert James photo below left, areas of the "copper sulfide" are remarkably similar in colour to the copper sulphate purchased a few days prior (below right).
Copper sulfate pentahydrate turns grayish white when heated. See for yourself in a screenshot from this video:
- The Tucson samples have threads. Now that the "glassy glaze" is sodium silicate rather than quartz (whose melting point is slightly over 1,400°C – 2,600°F), it's a lot easier to explain how any threads survived intact.
- Despite the Tucson samples having contained molybdenum less than a month ago, now they don't.
- Finds "annealed graphite crucible relics" on Tucson samples, whilst showing the annealed melting dish purchased Feb. 19th as his "control crucible". No sign of the five actual crucibles he also bought, including the one which was already annealed.
- The 91.83-ct lead-glass filled green sapphire makes another appearance, only this time the lead-glass filling is described as "the same as on the Chinese Andesine", which Mr. James has just identified as sodium silicate (surely his Enwave Raman could separate the two, no?).
- Suggests the only plausible explanation for the lack of molybdenum and the presence of annealed graphite crucible relics is that "the Chinese cookers" have moved from using molybdenum crucibles to graphite ones.
- States in his conclusion that "The original question was simply whether or not treatments have been done to this Chinese andesine? The answer to that has clearly been given: Yes!"
Pardon, mon ami, but we disagree.
The "threads on andesine" newsletter is a desperate act by a desperate man. This is someone who is petrified that, after four years of accusing others of fraud, it is he who will be revealed to have been guilty. Shall we review? Let's…
- It was JTV who first released the news that Chinese andesine was treated (February 2008).
- It was the Japan-German Gemmological Laboratory that developed this evidence.
- Robert James of the International School of Gemology did not publish anything on this subject until 17 April 2008, more than two months after the JTV disclosure. In that article, he claimed the material was treated Indian oligoclase, despite the fact that JTV had already revealed months before that the treated material was andesine/labradorite originating from Inner Mongolia.
- Robert James of the International School of Gemology used his new-found notoriety to sucker a bunch of people into fronting him the money to purchase an entry-level micro-Raman unit.
- Robert James of the International School of Gemology proceeded to misuse this instrument to declare that Mozambique cuprian tourmaline was actually synthetic.
- When Bear Williams clearly demonstrated that Robert James at the International School of Gemology did not have the proper training to use this instrument, rather than admitting the mistake, he conjured up a new fake treatment (dyefusion) in what was essentially a cover-thy-ass exercise.
- Even though the majority of the gemological community found his evidence to be nonsensical, Robert James of the International School of Gemology/World Gem Society continued sending out scandal messages attacking any who disagreed. Why? Because he probably found it was good for business.
Anything can be on the surface of a sample. Most threads are made up of natural fibers. They burn at a low temperature. Remember Ray Bradbury and Fahrenheit 451? They burn at the same temperature as paper: 232°C (451°F).
Here is a short list of the sober researchers, gemologists and traders whom Robert James has accused of either willful ignorance or out-and-out fraud:
Ahmadjan Abduriyim, Willi Bieri, Ladina Dorta, Troy Douthit, Emily Dubinsky, John Emmett, Gisela Fontaine, Detlef Günther, Kathrin Hametner, Richard Hughes, Flavie Isatelle, Brendan Laurs, Thanong Leelawatanasuk, Ren Lu, Shane McClure, Mario Meier, Adolf Peretti, George Rossman, Ken Scarratt, Dana Schorr & Igor Villa.
This group includes some of the finest scientists and gemological researchers in the world, working at no less than half a dozen different facilities/institutions across the globe.
The record shows entirely the opposite of what Robert James of the International School of Gemology has been blathering about. The above-named individuals performed their research by going to the source or working closely with the samples of those who did. They subjected collected samples to a battery of tests at several different research labs, revealing fraud when they found it (the salted mine near Gyaca and the large matrix specimens), and they published their results in a variety of places, including those subject to peer review. They even went so far as to distribute samples in Tucson to large numbers of people, including critics.
In contrast, we have Robert James working out of his home, employing unnamed labs and researchers on specimens he's obtained from eBay, refusing to allow others to test his samples and launching scud "newsletters" at anyone who dares to disagree.
- We've witnessed Robert James of the International School of Gemology/World Gem Society claiming to buy a 91.83-ct green sapphire from "a major Hong Kong sapphire dealer" that was actually purchased for $1.25 from a small-time Thai eBay dealer.
- We've witnessed Robert James of the International School of Gemology/World Gem Society claiming said sapphire was sold as "all natural and untreated" and yet the original listing by that Thai dealer clearly labelled it as "LEAD GLASS FILLED".
- We've witnessed Robert James of the International School of Gemology/World Gem Society claiming that the Thai dealer disclosed said treatment in "tiny print at the bottom of the page" when it was actually in neon caps smack dab where it should have been.
- We've witnessed Robert James of the International School of Gemology/World Gem Society claiming to buy a large chunk of junk amethyst rough from a Chinese dealer, when in fact he bought it for $0.99 from yet another small-time Thai eBay dealer.
And now we are asked to swallow yet another big-fish story on "crucible relics", this deep-sea monster allegedly hooked as YourGemologist was busy purchasing a full kit of fake-your-own-big-fish gear. Has he genuinely caught a whopper, or is he just telling yet one more?
Double, double toil and trouble;
Fire burn and cauldron bubble.
Fillet of a fenny snake,
In the cauldron boil and bake;
Eye of newt, and toe of frog,
Wool of bat, and tongue of dog,
Adder’s fork, and blind-worm’s sting,
Lizard’s leg, and howlet’s wing,
For a charm of powerful trouble,
Like a hell-broth boil and bubble.
William Shakespeare, Macbeth
In recent weeks, Mr. Bean has sent a number of minions out to defend him. Their steady drumbeat is to accuse we, the Gobsmacked Gang, of hiding behind anonymity.
We say to them clearly:
You are nothing but errand boys sent by a grocery clerk to collect a bill.
What do you call it when the assassin accuses the assassins? A lie. A lie and we have to be merciful.
YourGemologist's eBay records show that he purchased some 150 items on eBay over the past year, including nearly 50 in May alone. However, since we went public with our information in late May 2012, the YourGemologist eBay account has bought absolutely nothing. We wonder why?
We are the Gobsmacked Gang, those who cannot believe the things that spring from the mouth of the International School of Gemology's Robert James, the Mr. Bean of the gemmological world. Please note that the Gobsmacked Gang has nothing to do with what appears to be yet another Robert James attack site FakeGemology.com, which is designed to hurt someone making an honest attempt at teaching gemmology. Once again, as is copiously detailed on our Files page, James reveals what an evil little spawn he is. We would pray for his soul, but there is no evidence he has one. Thus we suggest a career change. A man like this certainly belongs in the Trump administration.
"If I were to catch any of my ISG Registered Gemologists or Registered Gemologist Appraisers trying to pull the stunts that you are pulling on eBay, I would pull their diplomas, publicly expel them from the ISG, and personally make sure that they did not work again in this industry with anything but a broom in their hand."
— Robert James
"They [the insurance industry] do not take kindly to frauds being perpetrated on consumers."
— Robert James
Read about the Robert James eBay fraud in our article here.