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Messages - Gem Ranger

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Gemstone Discussions / Re: Mega Identification Thread
« on: October 10, 2018, 11:47:14 PM »
Sorry Nwnsw, not much value in that lot. Maybe $50 for the first two amethyst specimens, but imo that's it.


NWNSW, I'd start by putting up a series of photos on this post showing any equipment, faceting rough, opals, rock slabs, specimens etc. The forum will be able to advise if you have anything of value or something that requires further investigation. I have seen many rock collections and they do vary a lot. At least the initial advice you would get here would be unbias towards any agenda.

Hi Ian,

The most commonly used (and effective) polishing laps are the 'type metal' (alloy) laps. Pure tin is too soft. Your prepolishing lap should be copper. Don't 'score' either lap, but a touch up sanding with 240 grit wet & dry is advised if the laps are too shiny.
I use a vaseline / kerosene / diamond powder mix as the prepolish & polishing compounds - 3,000 to 6,000 diamond for the prepolish, 60,000 for the polish. Add a bit more diamond to the mix when faceting harder gems like topaz & sapphire. There are premixed compounds & sprays available if you prefer. Use small chamois squares to distribute the media on to the laps. Keep each well separate to avoid cross contamination.
Garnets polish easily and I'm sure you'll achieve the outcomes your after.

Fossicking Locations / Re: Places to find radioactive rocks?
« on: July 14, 2018, 04:04:39 PM »
Thanks heaps Rej, that's been a nagging question for me for ages. I appreciate finally having that one answered  :D

Fossicking Locations / Re: Places to find radioactive rocks?
« on: July 11, 2018, 11:57:19 AM »
Nice one Rej. What are the readings like on harts range zircon and nuked electric blue topaz?


Fossicking Locations / Re: Devils rock Tyalgum
« on: July 07, 2018, 11:35:34 AM »
Very good point Jimnyjerry. Can't be digging in National Park.

No probs RR :)

Fossicking Locations / Re: Devils rock Tyalgum
« on: July 04, 2018, 06:25:09 PM »
I think I know the place, its on the rim of an all volcano (Mt Warning?). I haven't been up there but saw it in the distance. I've been told its quite hazardous to fossick as its on the edge of a steep drop where the chalcedony cores (for want of a better word) are found. I was told that however many years ago someone was working on or under the ledge and it gave way. Injury or death occurred to more than one person which might have resulted in access being blocked. The one core I had from there was a double fist sized specimen with rough blade or wing like protrusions coming out of the centre, basically a chalcedony infilling of a thunder egg. It was mainly translucent white and grey with a bit of green. It has a unique, fairly elegant quality about it. Apparently they are found in kaolin clay and since they haven't travelled they are quite intricate and detailed. There would be a fair bit of cleaning involved, perhaps with high pressure spray or acid to get it to specimen quality. I believe some of the specimens found there were quite large. That's as much as I know.

Location of the Month / Re: NSW - Hogarth Range
« on: November 25, 2017, 07:39:13 PM »
If you don't mind the company I might join you guys. It just depends if I can fit it in work wise. The 7hr round trip is going to be a pain but I've always wanted to do at least one trip down there.


Tips, Gadgets & Brag Board. / Re: Rocks from Newman, WA. First Post
« on: November 24, 2017, 01:21:36 PM »
Good ID on the geode Trev, that would mean all the calcite could be dissolved using hydrochloric acid leaving the geode intact with the quartz crystals creating a nice crystal cave look. The acid can be bought from a hardware store. Its commonly used to clean brickwork. Its strong stuff so use appropriate safety gear.


Gemstone Discussions / Re: Topaz?
« on: November 22, 2017, 07:15:55 PM »
Its definitely quartz Cohen, sorry. I've fossicked a lot of it over the years.


Jimnyjerry, to add a little perspective the locals have on occasion used dozers to open up productive spots. A dozer was used at the back of bismuth to open up a trench until the landholder found out. On another occasion a couple of locals used a dozer or backhoe to excavate a massive vugh at Silent Grove. Needless to say it resulted in mostly broken crystals but rumour has it that they still made $20k from what they were able to salvage. Some locals play by the rules, others over the last 10-20 years have done the wrong thing. I've heard reports of multiple significant quartz finds (and occasional beryl) being dug and sold for good $$ over the years. Even now you'll find at least one dedicated Facebook Group allocated to selling Torrington quartz crystal finds.
I have no idea what the inside story is to the Mr Tumbles but I can't see someone floating in a dozer for the sake of some crystals, the economics don't work. Whatever was done would likely have been done with the assistance of local machinery and knowledge. Unfortunately these actions have impacted those of us that do play by the rules  >:(


Gemstone Discussions / Re: Huge Killacrankie Diamond.
« on: November 03, 2017, 11:04:13 PM »
I second that Harry. I recall being interested in it at the time but its hard to drop $2400 on a stone without being able to inspect it. It seemed like it had good potential. Running the numbers the 800 carat rough might cut a 200 carat stone. GemVal now requires a subscription for topaz so I'm only guessing here, but say between $30-$50 per cut carat, that's potentially an $8k stone (perhaps more if provenance is taken into account). However allowing for flaws, its more likely to result in 2-3 stones at maybe $6k. Still, not a bad return for a weeks work to a facetor, assuming a buyer can be found.
Happy to hear other opinions on the value if I'm off the mark, and also an update of what became of the stone.


Ask a "Silly" Question / Re: Picture Gallery
« on: October 11, 2017, 06:17:44 PM »
Well put Leah. I recently looked into creating a non profit website for myself and yes its an ongoing cost commitment. Adds are an obvious way of offsetting some of those costs, but like you said its annoying to the users. So thankyou on behalf of us all for keeping this forum uncluttered and free flowing  beers


Wanted / Re: morganite
« on: October 09, 2017, 10:14:37 PM »
Hi Moth, if your looking for morganite from Australia it will be difficult. I've seen local aqua but not morganite. I'm sure it exists but will likely be very pale and small. On the other hand if you are looking for overseas morganite being sold in Australia, that's much easier. Just visit your local gemshow and seek out a rough supplier. The rough suppliers also do sales btwn shows if you have their contact details. You may locate the odd local supplier through these forums or the FB Groups. Obviously, being able to inspect rough prior to purchase minimises the chance of being 'ripped off' as you put it, but there are rough dealers out there that do stand behind their products and will happily exchange or refund if you have an issue. Best of luck.


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