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spara50

Akro Agate Fire Opal Box

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Some new marble mail this week from an estate. It's amazing these are still showing up once in awhile. The marbles are just how it came to me, no changes. I believe all of the solid color marbles are part of the opals. No. 2 size. Original dividers.

 

Akrofireopals01sm.jpg

Akrofireopals02sm.jpg

Akrofireopals03sm.jpg

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you always come up with some dandy stuff craig ... :rimshot: ..... bill

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Thanks guys. I hadn't seen this one before either. Sometimes I wonder how many of some of these they really made. Using an Imperial box with a silver label was a lot more work.

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The green ones are especially striking. I don't think there were any of that color - or blue ones? - in that big find you had ten years ago, were there? 

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No, those colors are new to me. Especially like the blue, but the light yellow ones are unique.

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And I hardly noticed the yellows - I bet they are spectacular. Pics just can't do fire opals justice. I still have those fantasy boxes I got from you and they just glow.

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Sure do, Dani, right at the center. I went back to Alan's info and he had the rarity then ranked as brown, yellow, green, red and blue. I'm assuming white would be most common. 

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Here are the two fantasy boxes of "Flinties" that bought from Craig (spara50) after his incredible find of a crate of Akro marbles:

599c74b89a2b3_Orangeflintiebox1.jpg.bde4ff1f2294e88735e5fcc00df55eee.jpg599c74ae7c7cb_Brownflintiebox1.jpg.0f5e95b32a9e1db70fe2e9c728fa6aa9.jpg

 

Craig - the red ones to me look orange, or are they INTENDED to be orange? Do you have the full range of colors to show us? that would be both impressive and instructional.

 

I wanted to set in my own mind, and for newbies on the board, the difference between moonies, flinties, opals, and fire opals; other boards have had discussions about what Akro called each of these. Opals are easy; they're what Akro called their solid color marbles. As for the others, here's the late Alan Basinet's full take on the subject:

"Akro Agate Flint Moonies (referred to by many collectors simply as "moonies") are translucent white marbles composed of opalescent glass, which will glow orangish when held to a light. Flinties are also opalescent, but have colored base glass (brown, yellow, green, red, and blue, in increasing order of rarity); "Fire Opal" is Akro's name to refer to their red Flinties. Akro Agate's opalescent marbles can be distinguished by their small clear "eye," a small circular area of clear glass surrounded by the remaining cloudy matrix."

Indeed, on pg. 23 of "American Machine Made Marbles" is a #1 box of Akro Flint Moonies from Hansel de Sousa's incredible collection. However, right above it are two other boxes, also from his collection, one a #0 and one also a #1, that both just say Moonies, and at least in the photos, they appear to be identical.

sissydear gave us her personal experiences in a post from (ahem) another board: "...I have flinties in red that are 5/8 to an inch. I have opals the same, so size won't help. If you place the marble on a flashlight so that the light shines through it and it looks like opalescent glass, It's probably a flintie since the rules no longer say they have to have eyes. It it doesn't look opalescent, I would guess it to be an opal. Sound contradictory? When I started collecting the solid colored marbles they were called opals. Some are translucent and light passes through, some are pretty opaque. So really, I'm not much help for that. I know what mine are. New rules now, I wouldn't want to be finding them now. Edna"

These were taken in cloudy conditions - in sunlight they're a lot more impressive, but hey, it's Central Ohio. Beggars can't be choosers lol.

 

 

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Buckeye and Zaboo: I don't think any are hand gathered. The green ones actually have a partial cork to them. The others have a spot larger than a fisheye more like a smile. Like the flinties in the boxes above have the smiles.

As far as colors of flinites go, in the crate I had they varied from very light to very dark red. Your two boxes are the ends of the spectrum.I don't know if Akro put the runs of flinties that didn't match the color they were looking for in these 10,000 count crates. But it's possible. I'm not sure about the definition of the Fire Opals being red, though a glow in them may have been part of it.  If you notice the box is 'Assorted' Fire Opals leading me to believe they came in a variety of colors like what's in the box. To have both Flinties and Fire Opals that looked the same wouldn't make sense.

I have talked to many old timers that swear their most valuable marbles were clearies and solid colors like these. They were prized by players. Collectors don't feel the same way. If they did we would all be millionaires.  :)

Thanks for the pics of the boxes. I forgot how nice those were. I did keep one of the flintie boxes for myself too. I think they are really dark red ones.

Thanks for all the great input.

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Zaboo has an ad ... somewhere ... which shows Fire Opals.   I'm not finding it right now in my saves.

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The blue shows more than the green. Here is a copy of my ad showing different colors.

 

 

FireOpalsAD.jpg

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Piece of trivia which _some_ reading this page might not know --- "Fire Opal" was the winning name in the Prize Name contest of 1930.  Supposedly the winning name was what corkscrews were going to be called after that.  But obviously that never happened.  

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