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advise needed; Vaseline and Israeli Glass

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Good Morning,
It has occured to me that I should ask advise on just how much uranium is in Vaseline glass.  When I have put some 40 pieces together, does the old gieger counter go off?  Also, under my black light, some pieces have a much brighter (glow  :?: ) shine.  Does that mean it is more radient?  Now, I am surely not worried about getting pregnant,  thank God, but it seems my offspring doesn't realize just what it is that is responsible for all the babies around here!!  They just don't know when to quit!  What level of radiation is safe?  What is not safe?
Now,hopefully, onto another path to this wealth of knowledge here...
The pieces of Israeli Glass I have are most likely knockoffs from the real deal, but, what if.......?  How do I tell what is authentic?  I have learned on this forum of the wave of psuedo Israeli Glass on the market today, so if that's what I have, so be it.  I would like to have some links for the research, as I have had no joy at all, not even on Google or Omni.
Thanks so much for your time and advise,


David E:
From my limited knowledge, I understand the Geiger counter will go off with just a single piece!  :P

Tony Hayter's 1st Glass site is well worth visiting on this subject and a good source of attribution:

I think the ciontent or purity of uranium can determine the brightness - some pieces I have glow readily in normal daylight, whereas others don't look uranium at all and need the 'purple light' to reveal all.

I know that the level of uranium is "harmless" but have often wondered myself whether a substantial collection could make anyone "icky-poo" — but I reckon you'll be alright Linda, providing the babies don't have three heads  :lol:

Free advice, with no conditions (ahem!) :wink:

'The Big Book of Vaseline Glass' by Barrie W Skelcher, published by Schiffer, (I bought my copy at Broadfield House) is fantastic for the science (both physics and chemistry) involved in 'Vaseline' (uranium) glass  :shock:

To cut a long story short, his conclusion is that a full cabinet of uranium glass might expose the owner in one year to an additional dose equal to from one eighth to a quarter of the normal annual exposure to background radiation we all get, depending where we live.  (Hope I made that clear enough  :? )

Skelcher says this might increase if, for example, one wore a necklace made of uranium glass beads next to the skin, but would still be below the dose regularly experinced by workers in the nuclear industry and considered to be safe (although he admits it might eventually cause a skin complaint, in the way that over exposure to UV in sunlight can lead to skin cancer).

As for the amount of uranium in a piece affecting the fluorescence, it is not dependant on quantity but on the chemical composition of the various  uranium salts and on their reaction with the other chemicals in the glass.  

Also, Thorium and Potassium can cause glass to fluoresce without there being any uranium in it at all!  And both will register on a Geiger Counter, too  :shock:

It's a super book, and well worth getting if you are 'into' 'Vaseline' (or 'uranium') glass!   :D


:D  :D
I don't think you need to worry unduly about the radiation from Uranium. I believe it is not really of the harmful type. (there's Alpha, Beta and Gamma types, all have varying strengths - some cannot penetrate as far as others, while the dangerous stuff needs lead bricks to stop it.

I don't think Uranium will get through anything much. They gave it to us as trainee technicians, in liquid form, to throw about in labs!). It's not much more dangerous than luminous toys or watchfaces, although, obviously there is more of it! I've heard that someone wearing beads of uranium glass set off the alarm bells while visiting Sellafield! :lol::lol::lol:

An eight of the 'safe' dose seems a lot to put on top of the normal background. Plus there have been scientific opinions that the so called 'safe' dose is a hundred or more time too high. A subject that is aired from time to time in journals but never with the power of the nuclear lobby.

But what the heck we all die anyway. :wink:

Don't forget radiation doses are cumulative, so every additional exposure tots up your dose.


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