Somdej Wat Rakang - real or fake?

As first post in the series of articles on how to recognize fake amulets from real ones, i would like to show you an example of a fake Somdej Wat Rakang amulet;

On first examination, you might perhaps think that this amulet looks like a very old and authentic Somdej  Wat Rakang Kositaram amulet. Indeed the face of the amulet looks old and covered in gold and red Chad Rak laquer. So, lets take alook at how i recognize this amulet to be a fake; The chad rak laquer is easily scratched off with the fingernail - this shows it is not old - the coloring is not chad rak, rather a similarly colored substance painted on to look like chad rak. Upon checking the mixture, a quantity of Pong Tabai Tong is found to be present, but it is brass, not Tong Nopagao (nine alloy gold, used in sacred amulet making).

The surface of the amulet is easily recognizable as new (but made to look old) - there are no appearances of "Taek Lai Nga" ( mottled cracks forming on the surface), which are typical of Wat Rakang Somdej amulets. The amulet cement does not feel really dry and hard, as would be the case with a real Wat rakang amulet. The back of the amulet does not feel smooth and silky, rather rough to the touch. This shows also the young age of this fake amulet. A Somdej Wat Rakang that is over 50 years old will have a very smooth and hard slippery surface to it when you touch the back side. This amulet is quite a well made fake, which would convince the average buyer, but would be obviously fake to the expert.

There are many ways to see which edition or batch a a Somdej Wat Rakang belongs to by looking at the back side of the amulet to see what surface they were placed on to dry. Some editions or batches would be laid on stone, blackboard or even marble to dry out. This gave varied textures and markings to the back side of the amulets. I shall be publishing articles on this on the blog as and when i can.

You can contact me on sakyant at windowslive dot com or fone 98323062 (Singapore) if you wish to rent amulets.
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