There are many tests that can be performed on materials to determine if they are, in fact, Bakelite..They include the rub test, the hot water test, the hot needle test, the "scrubbing bubble test", and others.
From my experience, the most effective test one can perform on a much-cherished antique radio to determine whether it is Bakelite -- One that many of us have successfully performed with no training -- is to drop it on the floor! There is no confirmation more precise than that ear piercing explosion followed by the scattering of sharp brown shrapnel.
Having successfully determined that the once-beautiful, but now shattered cabinet is indeed bakelite, many people contact me to see if I can return it to its original splendor.
Below is an example of a classic Charlie McCarthy radio cabinet which was sent to me for rescue....Most would probably agree that this is a basket case.
You can click on Charlie McCarthy to see the same cabinet after some major reconstructive surgery...
As you can see, there is a great deal that can be done to save even the most badly damaged of Bakelite cabinets.
So, before you dispose of your treasured heirloom, and perhaps doom yourself to a lifetime of despair......
Drop me a line.