Counterfeit Medalta Stamps

Description: How to identify them and remove them.

Someone out there is placing a fake Medalta stamping on otherwise unmarked pieces. So far at least two fake pieces have been reported to me by collector Bruce Douglas who published the booklet “Medalta Lamps of Vancouver.” One of the items is a lamp base standing 12.5” high while the other is a pair of red glazed pelican-shaped salt & pepper shakers. Apparently the faked stamp has also been placed on a genuine blue-grey Medalta lamp base style number 406 which was seldom if ever marked by Medalta with either an oxide or impressed stamp.

How do you tell the fake stamp from the original G.14 stamp to which it is the most similar? By its size, the style of the font and due to the fact that it washes off, as it is only an ordinary ink stamp rather than a fired-on oxide stamp. The pictures I have are not the best for discerning the font differences, but the letter that seems to be the most obvious is the shape of the D. Medalta’s D is more rounded than the phoney one, and the fake stamp is only 1.5 to 1.6 cm. in length while Medalta’s is either 2.0 or 2.6 cm. long. While the stamp could well come off or at least all but disappear when washed with water, I should point out that the pair of pelican shakers had clear nail polish placed over the stamp giving it the appearance of being under the glaze.

It is indeed sad that this type of thing has to occur; but, now that we know it is happening, we can at least guard against it. Maybe collectors will have to start carrying a small bottle of water, a piece of cloth and even some nail polish remover or acetone with them to test the stability of the stamp. You can buy packages of 12 individually sealed non-acetone, nailpolish remover pads made by Andrea. I picked mine up from Shoppers Drug Mart for $4.27. The thin pads are only 3 x 2.75 inches in size and therefore they conveniently fit in a wallet or purse.

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