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This list digest contains the following message subjects:
1. LapDigest News for Issue No. 205 -- Sat. 4/10/99
2. NEW: Replating Old Wheels with New Diamond?
3. NEW: What is Utah Opalite?
4. NEW: What is Chinese writing stone?
5. NEW: Chrysoprase emissions
6. NEW: Gem & Mineral Clubs in Jacksonville, NC
7. RE: Carving Rocks
8. Re: Beginners: Schools for Learning Lapidary Arts
9. Re: Looking for a Club to Join "in Absentia"
10. RE: Visiting New England
11. RE: Slab Saw Kits
12. Re: Slab Saw Kits
13. FS: Opals
14. WTB: English Blue-John Fluoride
15. WTB: Poppy Jasper
16. WTB: Quartz Caps for Triplets
17. BIO: Jan Gardin
18. BIO: Steve Corman
Subject: LapDigest News for Issue No. 205 -- Sat. 4/10/99
Tell you what I want to do -- I want to put out an issue on
only amber and copal, etc. - now remember this is a Lapidary
Digest, so please try to restrict your queries to some
aspect of amber and lapidary. But if you have a really
great question on amber which is not really related to
lapidary, well, we will publish it anyway! So please send
them in! Anytime you are ready, I am!
Next issue should be published on next Wednesday or Thursday
- Then I am off to Wildacres for a week cutting opals!
Take care of yourself, gang, and as always - have fun!
Subject: NEW: Replating Old Wheels with New Diamond?
I have access to a number of badly used hubs from diamond
wheels; most are 1-1'2" wide x 8" diameter. Can these hubs
be recovered with new diamond? Who does this? Would there
be a savings over buying new wheels?
Subject: NEW: What is Utah Opalite?
Recently at a trade show I bought a purple stone called
Utah opalite. It looks and feels like Variscite only purple.
Does anyone know what it really is and has had experience in
Sally in Houston.
Subject: NEW: What is Chinese writing stone?
Hello again, here's another question. What is Chinese writing
stone. It has long been one of my favorite stones, but no one
seems to know much about it. Is it a jasper? I was told the
only place it has been found is in California. True or false?
Subject: NEW: Chrysoprase emissions
I got some chrysoprase, and was trying to cut a piece of
it into a cabochon. I preformed it on a couple of different
flat diamond laps; nothing unusual.
Well then it was time to sand and polish. I just got a new
arbor and decided to put 3M diamond belts on the sanding
drums and give them a try with the chrysoprase. When I apply
the chrysoprase to the drum I can see through to the contact
point between the stone and the belt, and it is emitting
quite a bit of light.
I don't know if it is a piezoelectric discharge or the
contact point is getting white hot, but it's emitting. This
leaves white streaks across the face of the stone that do
not completely polish out. And if I press too hard I get a
bad smell, either ozone or the adhesive on the belt
vaporizing (or a combination of both). This did not happen
with, for example, a piece of optical quartz I tried or with
some Wyoming "black jade" I polished. Anyone know what's
Subject: NEW: Gem & Mineral Clubs in Jacksonville, NC
Does anyone know of any Gem & Mineral Clubs in Jacksonville,
NC or real close to it? You can e-mail to the list, but
please sent me an e-mail directly.
Scott: The closest club to Jacksonville is the Tarheel Gem
and Mineral Club in Raleigh, NC - my club. hale
Subject: RE: Carving Rocks
<<As a member of the Gem Carvers Guild of America I would
like to add a few words on this subject.>>
Does the Gem Carver's Guild have a website?
Subject: Re: Beginners: Schools for Learning Lapidary Arts
In my search (as a beginner) for clubs (the one in St.
George, UT is defunct, no success; I've notified Zabinski)
and places to learn about lapidary in this area, I've had
First, the St. George Rec & Parks Dept has a rock shop which
is open to the public, Tues & Thu evenings year 'round,
charge is $1.50 per night. They do not have an official
instructor, but there is a sort of supervisor, who knows
how everything works, etc. And he and the other attendees
seem quite knowledgeable, and can show me how to do things;
guess it's sort of like a club! So if you are a St. George
winter "snowbird", here's a place for you to work during
Second, Dixie College offers a class, two semesters each
year (nothing in summer). 15 weeks, costs about $85. Run
through their continuing education program, so not listed in
their regular class schedule. The instructor, Robert Cobb,
seems really excellent. I visited the class, and they were
making some beautiful stuff. It is mostly about
jewelry-making, however. But they do have some lapidary
equipment. And some of them do channel-work.
Southern Utah University in Cedar City (65 mi north of St
George) also sometimes offers jewelry-making classes, and
this includes lapidary as well as lost-wax casting, etc.
But I hear the instructor, Steve Taylor, is about to retire
(or maybe has recently done so); don't know just what will
happen here in that case.
Subject: Re: Looking for a Club to Join "in Absentia"
Being a beginner, I have high hopes of getting to one of
the Wildacres sessions. Possibly this year, but probably
Anyhow, I need to belong to a Federation Club, and there
are none (Federation or otherwise!) within hundreds of
miles of me here in southern Utah. So I am looking for a
club I can sort of join "in absentia". Would like it to be
either Southeast (first choice) or Eastern Federation,
since it's always possible that they will sometime withdraw
the new invitation to the other federations. Want an active
club, but one with reasonably low dues; since I won't be
able to make use of their equipment it doesn't matter
whether they do or don't have any (although I imagine if it
is an active club it will have equipment). It would be nice
if they had a newsletter.
Does anyone have any suggestions, or offers?
Margaret: We would welcome you to the Tarheel Gem and
Mineral Society, in Raleigh, NC. We belong to both the
Southeast and Eastern Federations. Dues are $15 per year.
I will publish further details in the next issue! hale
Subject: RE: Visiting New England
Thanks for publishing my request. Five responses so far.
There are some great people in this hobby (apart from you
Do you know of a good supplier of Argentinean agate?
Keep up the GREAT work
Brian: I found out when I had burnout just how great the
people on this list really are! Hope you get some responses
to this new query. hale
Subject: RE: Slab Saw Kits
Mojave Industries is no longer in business. I know because
I tried to reach them in re my 20-in. saw. I live not far
from Kingman, AZ, where they used to be located.
Subject: Re: Slab Saw Kits
Covington Engineering in Redlands California has slab saw
kits from 12" to 36", you have to build your own tank, but
you can save a lot of money. These are old prices but they
range from $800.00 to $6,000.00. You can send for an up to
date catalog. The address and phone number are as follows:
Covington Engineering 715 W. Colton Ave
Redlands, Ca. 92373
Mailing address: PO Box 35, Redlands, Ca. 92373
Phone: (909) 793-6636
The Geode Man
Ernie: Thanks. I have called them and they are sending me
full information on their slab saw kits, which I will digest
and post as soon as I get it. hale
Subject: FS: Opals
We recently had two of our opal suppliers/miners visit us
at our home. They were on a two month selling trip to the
US during the months that are too hot to mine in Coober
It was great visiting with them, hearing some of the mining
stories from Australia, and seeing opal that sold for as
much as $35,000/ounce. We were told that the miners that
found the high priced crystal ($35k/oz) discovered a huge
deposit of this opal and all of it was selling for over
$10k/ounce. They were multi-millionaires overnight.
We were able to see about $500k worth of opal and believe
me we stayed up very late to see all of it. Being the good
opalholics that we are we bought way too much opal. So we
decided we need to have a sale. We are offering ten percent
off, on all of our inventory, until July 1. And that
includes everything from all fliers that we have mailed out.
We also have been getting a lot of requests for single
stones of high grade gem opal.
We have a new flier available listing thirty or so single
stones along with bulk opal. And all of it is ten percent
off until July 1! If you would like a flier please give me
your home address and I will send it off via snailmail.
Steve and Darlene Newstrom
The Village Smithy Opals
PO Box 7474
Bismarck ND 58507-7474
fax 701-222-2729 home 701-255-4675
Subject: WTB: English Blue-John Fluoride
I hope there is someone who can help me acquire enough
genuine English Blue-John to cut a dozen 5mm cabochons.
Alternatively if you have some cut or want to sell cut cabs
only please e-mail me with your price.
My customer needs the ties to the Old Country so only
genuine English mined fluorite will do.
Subject: WTB: Poppy Jasper
I am trying to find what I believe is called poppy jasper.
It has red dots inside of yellowish and black bands and
black dots inside of red. It has red and yellow connected
1/4 circle bands running thru like some of your better
I would appreciate any help finding some.
Subject: WTB: Quartz Caps for Triplets
I am a beginner trying to learn how to do opal triplets.
I'm starting out the easy way by working with some Spencer
opals I got in Spencer some years ago that are all finished
except for putting on the caps and finishing them off.
I have a few of the quartz caps (that I bought from them
with the opal), but not enough. And not large enough. Also,
I need a few flat pieces that are already sliced to the
right thickness and polished. Can anybody tell me where I
can buy these? (I don't really have the facilities to make
them myself, yet).
It would probably be best if you contacted me directly at
the address below.
Subject: BIO: Jan Gardin
I am from Sweden (not used to write or speak in English
besides being new on the Internet too) so please forgive
any peculiarities in what I write.
I am 60 years old, a psychologist and married to Ulla.
The last 10 years we have lived full-time on a very small
(only some 30 acres) farm which I bought 30 years ago and
which I have worked as a hobby since then.
I have retained my childhood love for thrilling and
beautiful stones and during the years bought some carvings,
books, etc. Christmas before last Santa was good to me and
brought a combination cabbing machine (trimsaw, wheels,
polishing disk etc. in the same unit). Till now I've made
some 70 cabochons out of stones I've found weeding etc.
Last summer I followed a short course in silversmithing to
learn elements in brazing and forming small objects in order
to learn how to make my own settings. (I couldn't find a
course on setting). So far I have worked in copper, brass,
aluminum and silver doing simple boxbezels and combined
boxbezel-clawsettings. I intend to work in bronze too but
it's hard to find suitable material in Sweden. I've even
tried leather as a setting material but that didn't come out
at all as intended. For wood I have high hopes though.
As seen I am just a very green beginner but I hope to
learn. I don't, yet, really understand my deepest interests
in these crafts but it has something to do with "talismanic"
qualities in worked stones properly set (what I mean is, it
must feel right).
Saying good-bye for now with a literal translation from
Swedish "Have it good". I wish you all the best.
Subject: BIO: Steve Corman
I just joined the list. My name is Steve Corman and I live
in Chandler, Arizona. I've been doing lapidary for about 5
years. Arizona is a great place to be if you're interested
in lapidary, as you can imagine. I am mainly interested in
cabochon cutting and intarsia. I also do some faceting and
belong to the faceter's digest -- don't worry Hale, I'll not
post any faceting machine messages on this list :-) -- and
do some silversmithing too to set the stones I make. I am
currently trying to get up the courage to try my hand at
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