Lapidary thread

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Re: Lapidary thread

Postby HBS Guy » 01 Apr 2017, 17:35

It looks very nice. Plenty of life in it!
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Re: Lapidary thread

Postby Lefty » 01 Apr 2017, 23:52

Yeah it does come up quite nice. My preference will always be for natural stones but the chunk of material was a gift so I'll use it. Got a huge rectangular block of it on the dop now, got a complex design in mind that I'll give back to Greg, maybe it can go in his shop display case if it comes up good enough.

Almost gave up on the stuff, it has a tendency to scratch and pit while polishing. Seems the compound ceramic lap that I use to polish most things so successfully with might be a tad hard for this material (which I believe lacks a proper crystal structure and is amorphous silica like opal). I went through a few different polishing laps before finally finding one that polished it up beautifully with no scratches or pits - a piece of Perspex that I bought at the Anakie Gemfest years ago.

Interesting how it seems to be not just the gem material itself that interacts with the polishing agent (in this case cerium oxide) but also the polishing lap.
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Re: Lapidary thread

Postby HBS Guy » 02 Apr 2017, 07:00

You tried any carving yet? Wonder if you can get a frog shape out of the chunk of chrysoprase? Have a niece mad about frogs/frog figurines.
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Re: Lapidary thread

Postby Lefty » 02 Apr 2017, 07:06

No, it was Greg who was going to start doing carving but I don't think he has gotten around to starting.
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Re: Lapidary thread

Postby HBS Guy » 02 Apr 2017, 10:25

Ah, pity.
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Re: Lapidary thread

Postby Lefty » 12 Apr 2017, 19:43

Some very limited internet has been returned, dropping in and out (STILL no home phone!) so I'll keep it brief.

Greg gave me a chunk of cristinite, here's my latest creation - design is called "Cleopatra's eye". Light behaviour is a very nice swirling effect and it really does look like an eye.

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Re: Lapidary thread

Postby Aussie » 12 Apr 2017, 19:54

Looks fantastic!
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Re: Lapidary thread

Postby HBS Guy » 12 Apr 2017, 21:32

I second that! Beyootiful!

And an artificial stone as well. Great job, Lefty!
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Re: Lapidary thread

Postby Lefty » 22 Apr 2017, 15:46

Marco Voltilini's "Nymphea", this time in mauve-coloured cristinite...

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Does a reasonable impression of the waterlily flower that is it's namesake.
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Re: Lapidary thread

Postby HBS Guy » 22 Apr 2017, 16:36

Looks very nice!
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Re: Lapidary thread

Postby Aussie » 22 Apr 2017, 16:52

HBS Guy wrote:Looks very nice!


Great work Lefty. Just 'not my colour, Dear.'
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Re: Lapidary thread

Postby Lefty » 23 Apr 2017, 06:14

Aussie wrote:
HBS Guy wrote:Looks very nice!


Great work Lefty. Just 'not my colour, Dear.'


You're not into pink(ish)? :bgrin
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Re: Lapidary thread

Postby Lefty » 29 Apr 2017, 05:29

Came up with this design myself (well, it was inspired by other ones but essentially I've built it). Orange cristinite. Going on the notion that people seem to want to see high-value stones like sapphires cut in traditional-looking designs, I've put a very traditional-looking cardinal-type crown on a more modern pavilion, though I made some adjustments to the pavilion angles. You don't really see the crown facet arrangement in this gem but in a deeper colour - like the typical blue or green sapphire - I think the traditional-looking crown would stand out more.

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Re: Lapidary thread

Postby Aussie » 29 Apr 2017, 13:52

Looks great! I'd buy a ring with that mounted in it.
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Re: Lapidary thread

Postby Lefty » 01 May 2017, 05:39

Cheers Aussie.

Methinks my body is saying that the time for me to keep doing a manual labourer's job that requires me to trudge along on my feet all day long is getting short - I can feel the next bout of gout coming on. And it was only a few months ago that I was crippled up with the last bout! :sad :sad :sad :sad :sad Take all my preventative medication regularly, avoid all the things I'm not supposed to eat or drink....and I still keep copping it. And then once I've got it, nothing they give me has ever had so much as the slightest effect on getting rid of it, all it does is make me as sick as a dog - shaking, sweating, head like a balloon, raging headaches, spewing over the veranda railing at 3 in the morning. The cure is worse than the ailment - and it doesn't even cure it with me!

Even with a crippled foot, sitting on a chair in front of the machine and working away is something I can do. But the call for it seems to be relatively minimal. People may admire faceted stones but they buy mostly finished bling, not loose stones. Only a few people actually get stones cut, mainly they seem to be collectors, occasionally someone might get one cut for the express purpose of getting set. If I lived in Brisbane there might be enough demand to maybe make a living from it but up here, I'm not convinced there is.

Ok, that's my official piss and moan over for today :bgrin Next up will be an emerald cut Rubyvale sapphire which is a nice sort of light apple green colour. About a third of the way through the job, piccies when finished.
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Re: Lapidary thread

Postby HBS Guy » 01 May 2017, 10:32

Can you sell the stones through Ebay?
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Re: Lapidary thread

Postby Dax » 01 May 2017, 12:52

Lefty wrote:Cheers Aussie.

Methinks my body is saying that the time for me to keep doing a manual labourer's job that requires me to trudge along on my feet all day long is getting short - I can feel the next bout of gout coming on. And it was only a few months ago that I was crippled up with the last bout! :sad :sad :sad :sad :sad Take all my preventative medication regularly, avoid all the things I'm not supposed to eat or drink....and I still keep copping it. And then once I've got it, nothing they give me has ever had so much as the slightest effect on getting rid of it, all it does is make me as sick as a dog - shaking, sweating, head like a balloon, raging headaches, spewing over the veranda railing at 3 in the morning. The cure is worse than the ailment - and it doesn't even cure it with me!


The first thing to do with gout is remove dairy products, red meats and processed foods. Especially foods with preservatives, which have a big influence on gout, yet the medical profession says nothing. The best form of medication for gout, is prednisilone, not a nice drug but no really bad side effects taken properly over a short time and not how the quacks tell you to take them.

Have a close friend who gets gout, but doesn't drink alcohol, he used to get it regularly once a month at least and hasn't had a bout for nearly a year since changing their diet and lifestyle. He was lucky to run into a doctor who had the same problem and unlike the others who keep prescribing gout medication which did exactly what you are saying. He was told to take 2 x 25mm for 3 days, 1 x 25 and 1x12.5 for 2 days, 1x 25mg for 2 days, then 12.5mg for 2 days and take the before mentioned items out of his diet. It worked every time and the prednisilone takes away the pain and suppresses the symptoms, so you a function mostly.

Gout is a form of arthritis, it's dairies and red meat which the most common triggers, along with some sea foods and of course, grog. Look up purine containing foods and regulate your diet so you don't consume foods that are high in purine. Not hard to do if you want good health and long life.
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Re: Lapidary thread

Postby Aussie » 01 May 2017, 17:01

Lefty wrote:Cheers Aussie.

Methinks my body is saying that the time for me to keep doing a manual labourer's job that requires me to trudge along on my feet all day long is getting short - I can feel the next bout of gout coming on. And it was only a few months ago that I was crippled up with the last bout! :sad :sad :sad :sad :sad Take all my preventative medication regularly, avoid all the things I'm not supposed to eat or drink....and I still keep copping it. And then once I've got it, nothing they give me has ever had so much as the slightest effect on getting rid of it, all it does is make me as sick as a dog - shaking, sweating, head like a balloon, raging headaches, spewing over the veranda railing at 3 in the morning. The cure is worse than the ailment - and it doesn't even cure it with me!

Even with a crippled foot, sitting on a chair in front of the machine and working away is something I can do. But the call for it seems to be relatively minimal. People may admire faceted stones but they buy mostly finished bling, not loose stones. Only a few people actually get stones cut, mainly they seem to be collectors, occasionally someone might get one cut for the express purpose of getting set. If I lived in Brisbane there might be enough demand to maybe make a living from it but up here, I'm not convinced there is.

Ok, that's my official piss and moan over for today :bgrin Next up will be an emerald cut Rubyvale sapphire which is a nice sort of light apple green colour. About a third of the way through the job, piccies when finished.


Yeah.....I'm sure I get gout randomly and thank goodness not often, which is weird because there is nothing random in my diet......or VB intake. I do nothing when I get it....lust limp and bear it. Goes away after a couple of days.

Must take many hours to cut those stones, I'm sure. But you already have a connection with a jeweller, so that should help. How about contacting the major *bling* retailers to see if you can link in there somewhere? Can't hurt.
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Re: Lapidary thread

Postby HBS Guy » 01 May 2017, 17:26

Or get into setting stones etc etc yourself.
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Re: Lapidary thread

Postby Lefty » 09 May 2017, 02:18

Something a bit unconventional - Bob Keller's "Bola Spider" in colourless quartz crystal. Once again, the camera simply can't perceive it as the eye does and shows what is actually a clear, flawless piece of material as hazy or smudged.

Image

Not perfect but it was a trial run. Everybody I've shown so far thinks the spider is painted on :bgrin I'm having to tell them that the spider motif is actually cut into the back of the stone at angles that don't reflect light, which creates a dark silhouette. The other pavilion facets are left frosted and unpolished for maximum contrast.
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Re: Lapidary thread

Postby HBS Guy » 09 May 2017, 07:59

ahahahaha!
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Re: Lapidary thread

Postby Lefty » 19 Aug 2017, 06:28

Hands haven't been too shaky lately (not while at home at least) so I set a round brilliant cut smoky in a pre-cast blank silver ring last night for young bloke to give to his lady friend. Looks pretty good (must get some piccies sent) and it has a story to tell - I extracted the little crystal out of a pocket in solid granite that dad and I found at Mount Gibson the day he went bouncing down the mountainside, he can tell her how his grandfather suffered for it :bgrin

Finally made a piece from scratch, a simple plain silver band. Had a bit of trouble getting the solder to flow in the right direction at first but eventually it worked. Cleaned it up and tapped it round on the mandrel - joint did not crack or split. Good.. Pre-polished with tripoli and final polish with rouge - finished up a beautiful bright mirror-like silver surface. Tiny nick on one side just visible to the naked eye, where the solder didn't quite fill but for a first attempt I was pretty happy, the join is quite difficult to see without the aid of loupes. Can't even really see it with the jewellers head loupes, need the stronger ones I use for faceting to pick it out.

So that's a start, though I do think that making settings to hold stones will take a bit of practice.
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Re: Lapidary thread

Postby HBS Guy » 19 Aug 2017, 15:11

Just another skill you will acquire. As you said earlier in this thread, you have to sell finished bling, not cut stones.
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Re: Lapidary thread

Postby Lefty » 20 Aug 2017, 08:29

Yep, I just twigged on at least one of the ways it's done (actually making a ring claw setting) after watching a video of a bloke making something similar (I have watched the jewellery-making videos showing the making of a bezel setting and setting the stone but I wanted to know how the claw settings are made.) Saw them make a wire basket setting - the look doesn't really do it for me.

But I can see what they've done to make the type of ring claw setting that I set the smoky in the other night - it's actually two rings in one. They make a simple band out of flat silver strip to the correct finger size. They then wrap another piece of silver the same width around the outside of the first band, after first splitting and bending up both ends of the second bit to form a set of claws, then solder the second around the original ring. If the solder joints are good, the metal fuses and once sanded back and polished the joints are invisible - the two pieces have effectively become one.
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Re: Lapidary thread

Postby HBS Guy » 20 Aug 2017, 18:09

Tricky little bastards those ring makers!


:bgrin
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