Help. Large Turquoise Bead

Hello I have had this Turquoise bead for a year or so and put it on a facebook group where the consensus is about 50/50. It is 25.3g and measures 35mm x 24mm x 20.5mm. It is drilled and on initial inspection appears to be composite because of the whitish webbing. However I have pin tested it with good results and have put flame to it and it does not melt at all not even a little bit. I heated it so long that after 4-5 minutes it was still too hot to pick up. Retains heat very well. It appears to me to be natural turquoise and was wondering if I could get some sort of validation. I will include photos. Any help is greatly appreciated.

Hello, thank you for sharing. Their are different grades of turquoise. From first look at this stone I would not have thought it was not a real piece of turquoise. It looks like a piece of Chinese Turquoise and beads in this style are popular. The harder and darker the color of the turquoise the better grade, this would not be a high grade stone. Hope this helps.

Hey Jason not sure if you got my last message as a reply to yours. You said the harder and darker the turquoise the better quality. This bead is actually really hard. And I have put fire to it for about 45 seconds without any consequence. Hasn’t affected the stone at all. It actually retained heat too hot to touch for near 5 minutes. The density and feel of the stone actually feels like quality. The only reason I am teaching reaching out is because I have had several “experts” tell me it is Persian turquoise and several tell me Chinese. This however doesn’t exhibit any of the signs of being Chinese, other than the size and quality giving people the thought that there is no way it can be anything good. This is a large stone that is not stabilized at all. Completely natural and very dense. If you are not sure maybe you can point me in the direction of someone who can help me. Thanks.

I am not sure if I am following you. Your main concern is that it is not Chinese? That the stone is not stabilized at all?

Just because Chinese is associated with turquoise doesn’t mean that it is not a quality stone. Many of today’s top artist will use Chinese Turquoise in their work and demand high prices. A good book to read is turquoise unearthed that shows an image of Chinese stones that replicate our most famous American mines. This link will show you an example of some turquoise beads from China

The test with the fire that you performed is usually done to see if a stone is real or plastic. Stabilized turquoise is real turquoise, not fake. It has just been put through a process that will harden and deepen its color. It is a real rock that will hold heat.

It can be difficult to tell if a piece of turquoise is natural or stabilized, especially from an image. When a stone is cut that is when it is revealed. Your stone could be a natural stone. I have also seen Persian Turquoise that looks like your stone, it could be Persian Turquoise. I just was playing the odds of it being Chinese, because that is what is usually used when you see beads like this, and I have seen lots of Chinese that looks like your stone. Most turquoise is stabilized.

You might send a picture to Bob at and see what he thinks.

Wow, just logged in again to see this message. I fully understand now. And yes your assessment as it being Chinese or Persian is correct. It is Persian. I still have it and decided to use it as my ceiling fan pull. lol So every once in a while it smacks me in the head. Anyways I have a new piece that I think could be Bisbee but I’m not sure. It is an interesting chunk for sure…I’ll post it here shortly. Thank you for your time.