Oozing Goo - The Lava Lamp Syndicate

I have a 1971 starlight lava lamp that my folks got for me as a gift because I collect lava lamps. The moron selling it at the antique store picked it up and shook it before selling it to my folks. Upon firing it up at home, the fluid was a clear amber color with bright ruby red wax sitting at the bottom. The lava looks sort of clean and smooth when it's first warming up. It has a lot of stalagmites and is quite pretty, but once it gets flowing, there's a lot of bubbles in the wax (looks clumpy or "rough"), and that is when little tiny balls of wax start forming (very tiny ones). It's as though the wax can't stay together and is breaking apart prematurely. The yellowish oil/water never gets cloudy, but those tiny blobs of wax are not normal and really detracts from it. After its been turned off for several hours, the little blobs of wax settle to the bottom and everything is clear again. My folks told me that it was smooth and clear running at the store, and we're all pretty mad at what happened. I really would rather not open it up, and it was a good deal so I don't really want to try to return it.

On a side note; what is that white stuff at the bottom?!


Any help would GREATLY be appreciated!!!!

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Ok......

Those microscopic pieces just keep reminding me that I could be looking at it clear. Hopefully it'll clear up through prolonged use. Once hot, it looks like I just shook it up.
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