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Author: Subject: The visual difference between high quality glassware and chinese crap
james2395
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[*] posted on 26-2-2014 at 03:08
The visual difference between high quality glassware and chinese crap


I feel my title is self-explanatory enough.
What type of defects am I looking for? Thinness? bubbles? What?
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forgottenpassword
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[*] posted on 26-2-2014 at 04:12


They look the same because they conform to the same international standards.
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confused
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[*] posted on 26-2-2014 at 04:23


bubbles are a definite sign of bad glass, no matter what the brand/country of origin.
Thinness depends on the type of glassware
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Mr_Magnesium
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[*] posted on 26-2-2014 at 05:48


I have a pyrex RBF and a Chinese RBF

Can not tell a difference, ill post a picture up soon.

They are currently soaking in hot soapy water
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*FWOOSH*
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[*] posted on 26-2-2014 at 07:56


Not all Chinese glassware is of poor quality, and poor quality labware can't always be visually identified, which is why a trusted source is so important. Bubble are a HUGE red flag, but thickness naturally varies based on application.
The reason many people choose to go with certain well known brands of American made glassware is that they can generally be certain every piece is high quality borosilicate that conforms to industrial standards, has not undergone undue stresses during manufacturing and has undergone rigorous quality control.
There are Chinese manufacturers that do the same thing for a lower price, but a common method of cutting costs is to skimp on quality control so the reliability can be inconsistent and hard to determine until the damn thing explodes on you.

[Edited on 26-2-2014 by *FWOOSH*]
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bfesser
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[*] posted on 26-2-2014 at 08:50


Quote: Originally posted by forgottenpassword  
They look the same because they conform to the same international standards.
What international standards?

<strong>james2395</strong>, you've presented a false dichotomy. Neither is all Chinese glassware 'crap' nor is all 'crap' glassware Chinese.




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Dr.Bob
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[*] posted on 26-2-2014 at 10:07


I have seen mostly good US glassware, and some Chinese to be poorer, but visually there may not be much difference. Thickness depends on the use and the suppliers spec. Pyrex sells "regular" and "thickwall" beakers, I would not try to heat a thickwall one with a burner or hotplate, the thicker glass gets more stressed. And most Chemglass flasks are very thick, but they specify that, and they charge a lot for them. Again, great for sturdiness, but lousy to heat except with a heating mantle or oil bath. I have seen small bubbles in even the best glassware, but usually a single bubble in a flask, not multiple ones.

My biggest issue is some of the Chinese stuff has poor ground joints (not uniform) and the stopcocks on some items are poor. I would not buy a Chinese addition funnel, unless I was sure that the stopcock would not leak. But otherwise, I have used some Synthware flasks and a few other items. The Chinese beakers tend to be very thin, so they don't last long in a lab with a dishwasher unless you are very careful and handle them delicately.

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Electra
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[*] posted on 26-2-2014 at 14:30


It's often assumed chinese wares are of lesser quality because they are cheaper, but that's just how the economies are. China just has cheaper goods. You will find cheap glass both in China, and in the USA.... it really makes no difference. It depends on the supplier.
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ZIGZIGLAR
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[*] posted on 26-2-2014 at 15:54


It is definitely more common for Chinese glassware to be flawed, but as has been discussed, it all comes down to the individual manufacturer/seller.

I have quite a lot of chinese glassware. I'm about to test some of the round bottom flasks and distillation apparatus under high vaccum - should be interesting.
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popi
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[*] posted on 26-2-2014 at 16:55


Best to believe none of what you hear and half of what you see.B&D glassware,German ,Russian and of course Canada and Usa glassware are a good choice.That is a brand name that is a safe bet.They cost more but cheaper guys are like...:Lab Boy etc are just as good...this is old news so please go ggle to update.popi out and good luck.
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[*] posted on 26-2-2014 at 19:06


If you're in Australia, you can access the Simax range of glassware (czek made) through various suppliers, the largest of which is Livingstone. If you're hesistant to take a gamble on Chinese eBay imports, that would be my recommendation to Aussies. You can also get some Duran stuff at reasonable prices from many Australian suppliers. I've never been asked for a trade registration or EUD when buying Duran distillation apparatus from Labfriend ... not that signing an EUD is a big deal anyway. Sciencesupply are a great local company to deal with, although the prices are pretty close to Simax/Duran anyway.
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[*] posted on 26-2-2014 at 19:31


I'm not sure if this is entirely correct, but I've heard that Chinese suppliers mark their glass with less appropriate fonts such as Times New Roman. This is just something I've heard in the past, but it may be a red flag.



Fear is what you get when caution wasn't enough.
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[*] posted on 26-2-2014 at 19:35


Quote: Originally posted by Awesomeness  
I'm not sure if this is entirely correct, but I've heard that Chinese suppliers mark their glass with less appropriate fonts such as Times New Roman. This is just something I've heard in the past, but it may be a red flag.


I'm not sure if everyone will pick up your sarcasm haha in an ironic twist, the printing on the chinese flasks I have are the only flaws I can find. The markings wear off with minimal use or are even distributed brand new with partially worn prints.
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[*] posted on 27-2-2014 at 15:31


Quote: Originally posted by bfesser  
Quote: Originally posted by forgottenpassword  
They look the same because they conform to the same international standards.
What international standards?

<strong>james2395</strong>, you've presented a false dichotomy. Neither is all Chinese glassware 'crap' nor is all 'crap' glassware Chinese.
http://www.iso.org/iso/iso_catalogue/catalogue_ics/catalogue...
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Funkerman23
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[*] posted on 28-2-2014 at 02:14


Just MY take and I'm no expert: Glassware with a brand label tends to be better made if you don't have the luxury of buying a known good maker.. After that look for bubbles in the areas where glass is joined together in addition to the walls. Here, a few tiny bubbles are not too much of a concern but a lot of them or large bubbles are an issue. As Dr Bob rightly mentions thicker wall glass isn't always better, use depending, and it carries special considerations:with thick walled apparatus either use a mantle or a liquid heating bath. Joint concentrically& uniformity can be an issue and here the use and severity is a factor: for general duty use it isn't as critical as it would be for high vacuum/ heating & cooling applications.Still, on average Chinese joints are not as uniform and this needs to be taken into consideration. Chinese stopcocks are a bit quirky as I've noticed. Laboy's PTFE stopcocks are OK but unless you shell out for a metered version( which they no longer sell apparently), they aren't so easy to use of you want a fine stream. They're more on/off than variable( assuming that gibberish made sense). Don't get me wrong they can still be used that way but you will need a careful hand. Not having tried their glass versions personally I can't comment on them at this time. Language barriers aside some sellers have great customer service records (,Like Laboy and if you are eBay inclined Nanshin sales are friendly.. albeit less familiar with English). If you can; try rotating a piece of the unknown brand's glassware and look for uneven light patterns in the walls/sides. ( try rotating a piece of known even-walled quality glass and pa special attention to how the light looks in the walls of it , then compare the light patterns thee with the Chinese glass). Large or glaring differences might be cause for concern but this isn't a guarantee as manufacturing methods do have an effect here. One user here measured the expected quality of a makers glassware but scrutinizing the quality of their thermometers ( http://www.sciencemadness.org/talk/viewthread.php?tid=18316 ) but , again this isn't an absolute way to check for quality. try looking for older sellers as well . Obvious reason being an older seller still operating probably does not carry or offer poor quality wares. Assuming my posting this in the wee hours hasn't rendered me a fool this might help.

EDIT: please correct or inform me if the above wall of text is wrong/ has errors. It was posted very late at night and while I can't see anything glaringly amiss, that does mean this is so.

[Edited on 1-3-2014 by Funkerman23]




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Floydle
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[*] posted on 14-5-2015 at 15:33


LabFriend is an Australian company:D that stocks glassware from Germany at reasonable prices - brands such as DURAN and Shott that have been around for years and years and are consistently made to a high standard.

If anyone is interested: :)
http://www.labfriend.com.au/lab-consumables-and-laboratory-g...
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