Ebonite question????

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Dec 7, 2008
Leucadia, CA, USA
I have been turning ebonite for pens for quite a while. Up until about two months ago, it was mostly Asian (India) ebonite ordered in meter long rods. I’ve read a number of articles and posts about the quality difference between the Asian ebonite and the German ebonite (supposed to be much better).
The vender where I’ve bought the Indian ebonite only carries about 4 colors and not the red-mottled that I needed so I figured that “now” was the perfect time to order some German red-mottled ebonite from an American vender (member here). I ordered 3 (10” long) sticks of red-mottled and 4 sticks of solid black.
I finely got to turning some of the red-mottled a few days ago and it is the worse stuff I’ve ever turned! Out of about 30” of ebonite I couldn’t get one good pen. The red-mottled ebonite had color flaws and soft spots throughout. In fact, inside the rod where the color should have been red were many tan areas that looked almost rotted of “not set”.
I know that ebonite is made under high pressure and heat. I have had some off-color problems with Indian ebonite (not much) but never the soft spots in the German ebonite. I speculate that maybe there was some pressure problem during manufacture? Again, I have never had this problem with the blacks, green-mottled, tan-mottled, or brown-mottled Indian ebonite.
…and now my question(s):
Is there something particular about the red-mottled ebonite that makes the Indian manufactures avoid it? I’ve got over $75 in bad ebonite, a week, and pocket full of frustration, and not a single good pen to show for it! Is there a good place to get red-mottled ebonite without all of the expensive flaws?:beat-up:
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