Helios Red Helios Green Helios Blue Helios Purple

Lapidary / Gemstone Community Forum
April 23, 2017, 03:44:55 pm
Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.

Login with username, password and session length
News: This Forum has moved to a new host.  Please go to http://lapidaryforum.net/group/index.php and sign up so you can participate.  You will no longer be able to post here.  It is now a read-only archive.
 
  Home Help Search Classifieds Gallery Links Classified / Auctions Staff List Login Register  

Pre-Form Layout Problem / Carol M's Brazilian Agate

Pages: 1 2 3 ... 5 [All]   Go Down
  Print  
Author Topic: Pre-Form Layout Problem / Carol M's Brazilian Agate  (Read 1334 times)
Carol M
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Gender: Female
Posts: 1028



View Profile
« on: June 24, 2013, 03:42:19 pm »

Hi guys,
I emailed Krystee [who has been a lovely mentor but now that she's got her 'dream job' she may be 'over the top' with things on her plate, so I'm sending this to one and all.

I'm FINALLY getting back to my first lapidary project and I'm stuck before I get 'off the ground'.   dunno

I sent her a pdf of the EBay slabs I bought, a while back and Krystee had suggested I try the Brazilian Agate for my first cab. 
I bought 2.
Anyway, one is about 5"L x 2"H and that's the one featured on the eBay cover page  [that's the one I want to start with].
Both are relatively thin, about 4-5mm thick.

I can come up with cab layouts that cover the main features but it uses most of the cab and will make a rather HUGE pendant.
I bought some very nicely shaped templates from cFc Jewelry Supplies.com, but one of them are nearly large enough to cover the whole 'scene'.
If I isolate any of the elements it cuts through the concentric grain in the middle.  bricks

Somewhat later - As I surfed around I started to notice that the 'concentric circle' thing actually, IMHO, looks 'cheap'.....[probably because there are a million cabs like that, in garish colors with concentric circles for 2 cents each].

Anyway, I started noticing that the 'made ya look cabs' were the 'less expected' arrangements.......so, I drew some possible preform shapes and labeled them A-F.    [see attachment]

Are any of these worth pursuing???  or maybe more than one.
Also, if there are any better options, please let me know.

Help!!!   help


* P1050376-002.JPG (435.34 KB, 1200x900 - viewed 19 times.)
Report Spam   Logged

Ciao,
Carol M
"Pursue Your Passions....."
"Imagine the Possibilities!"
"Mistakes are simply a form of practice!"
"People who never make mistakes.....probably never do anything!"

Social Buttons

deb193
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Gender: Male
Posts: 2068


View Profile
« Reply #1 on: June 24, 2013, 03:52:02 pm »

I like E best, and F looks playful too.

the edges between colors here are a little diffuse. The Brazilian is a good hard clean material to train with, but I think you will enjoy working some slabs with sharper lines. Some Brazialians even have sharp lines.
Report Spam   Logged

- Daniel

(when everything is exceptional, nothing is)

Carol M
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Gender: Female
Posts: 1028



View Profile
« Reply #2 on: June 24, 2013, 03:57:39 pm »

I like E best, and F looks playful too.

the edges between colors here are a little diffuse. The Brazilian is a good hard clean material to train with, but I think you will enjoy working some slabs with sharper lines. Some Brazialians even have sharp lines.

Boy, that was quick Daniel.  Thanks.
I was also thinking I could cut the slab [draw an imaginary line between B/C and down to between E/F] and not destroy any of the preform options. 
I have lots of lovely slabs I bought but that way I can work on several while I'm 'getting the feel' for my new Ameritool trim saw and Ameritool Flat-Lap.  I could also work on several at one grit before I change to the next disc.
Report Spam   Logged

Ciao,
Carol M
"Pursue Your Passions....."
"Imagine the Possibilities!"
"Mistakes are simply a form of practice!"
"People who never make mistakes.....probably never do anything!"

lithicbeads
Global Moderator
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 4927


View Profile
« Reply #3 on: June 24, 2013, 04:20:38 pm »

E looks very nice to me and if you shrink the size of some of the others and move them around a bit they will look more dynamic. You got very good advice from Krystee as you need to worry about your cutting not the problems of the materiel. Brazilian always was the classic rough as it has very few problems that will emerge to ruin a cab . Another reason it is good is that it is very hard and that makes making mistakes more difficult as it is harder to overcut. I would suggest you shop for some slabs with a bit more dynamic pattern if that what makes you happy and look into Montana agate slabs for your next cabs as they tend to have more contrast yet have most of the same good characteristics of Brazilian .
Report Spam   Logged

Haderly
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Gender: Male
Posts: 500



View Profile
« Reply #4 on: June 24, 2013, 04:28:02 pm »

I like E the best since the shape has captured the pattern instead of just including it. When pattern and shape compliment one another you get more appealing results. On the opposite side of E you could get a nice kite shape. 
Report Spam   Logged

Carol M
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Gender: Female
Posts: 1028



View Profile
« Reply #5 on: June 24, 2013, 06:39:21 pm »

E looks very nice to me and if you shrink the size of some of the others and move them around a bit they will look more dynamic. You got very good advice from Krystee as you need to worry about your cutting not the problems of the materiel. Brazilian always was the classic rough as it has very few problems that will emerge to ruin a cab . Another reason it is good is that it is very hard and that makes making mistakes more difficult as it is harder to overcut. I would suggest you shop for some slabs with a bit more dynamic pattern if that what makes you happy and look into Montana agate slabs for your next cabs as they tend to have more contrast yet have most of the same good characteristics of Brazilian .

Thanks for this info, Lithicbeads. 
What do you mean when you say 'shrink the size of some and move them around a bit they will look more dynamic.  I'm afraid I need something more specific to see what you're saying.  Can you give me a 'for instance'?? 
Which would you shrink and where would you move it too??

This preform part is way harder to do than I thought.  I guess that's why there are so many 'ho-hum' cabs in the world.  Doing a lovely job of cutting, grinding and polishing is one skill, but an even more critical, and less easily taught skill, is seeing what the slab 'might' become if you use 'this' shape and place it exactly 'that' way.

Are there any 'design tutorials' on that???
Report Spam   Logged

Ciao,
Carol M
"Pursue Your Passions....."
"Imagine the Possibilities!"
"Mistakes are simply a form of practice!"
"People who never make mistakes.....probably never do anything!"

Rockaholic
Guest
« Reply #6 on: June 24, 2013, 06:48:05 pm »

Looks like I'm in the minority here, but I like B the best for some reason. I think they'll all produce worthwhile cabs though and will say 'go for it!'
Report Spam   Logged
lithicbeads
Global Moderator
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 4927


View Profile
« Reply #7 on: June 24, 2013, 06:53:32 pm »

 Contrast is a big problem with that slab . Contrast within a cut stone is a relative thing , it is not all black and white . You have a lot of dark tones that are so dark that you can't pull them up with your limited light tones . Maybe make your preforms smaller so you can incorporate just a touch of the very dark to help define you main interest the play of the lighter tones. When real dark tones are mixed with a lot of middle tones it is easy to read those big dark areas as just negative space  which can quickly detract from your intent. Sometimes you need scraps of paper to move around to obscure all the slab except the areas you need to focus on to understand them. The cabs are there but you must find them.
Report Spam   Logged

Helene
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Gender: Female
Posts: 2007



View Profile WWW
« Reply #8 on: June 24, 2013, 07:09:39 pm »

I'ts hard to tell how large your cabs will be.  Try not to make your first cabs too large or too small.  Would you'all say between 20mm to 40mm?
Report Spam   Logged

lithicbeads
Global Moderator
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 4927


View Profile
« Reply #9 on: June 24, 2013, 07:13:31 pm »

 Too small and your " turning radius" makes things more difficult as you have to rotate faster and too big makes it much more likely there will be a problematic flat area on top. Helene sounds right.
Report Spam   Logged

tntmom
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Gender: Female
Posts: 1963



View Profile WWW
« Reply #10 on: June 24, 2013, 09:16:25 pm »

You've been given GREAT advice!!!  I agree with Helene about not starting too big or too small.  I always go for color and pattern balance.  It doesn't always work for me but, this was what I saw:  (the white would probably be the top of the cab as the black looks "heavier")



Also, I would probably not start with points on your first cab since you will be metal smithing them.  Points can be tough getting the correct angle for your setting.  Somebody correct me if I'm wrong as I don't smithe!!!!!  hide
Report Spam   Logged

~Krystee

Self Employed at Kristinegniotdesigns on Etsy https://www.etsy.com/shop/KristineGniotDesigns?ref=hdr_shop_menu
Facebook business page:  https://www.facebook.com/kristinegniotdesigns?ref=bookmarks
Proud member of East Kingco Rock Club:  http://www.eastkingco.org/index.php

Yesterday is history.  Tomorrow is a mystery.  Today is a gift, that's why it's called The Present.

Carol M
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Gender: Female
Posts: 1028



View Profile
« Reply #11 on: June 25, 2013, 12:26:55 am »

You've been given GREAT advice!!!  I agree with Helene about not starting too big or too small.  I always go for color and pattern balance.  It doesn't always work for me but, this was what I saw:  (the white would probably be the top of the cab as the black looks "heavier")



Also, I would probably not start with points on your first cab since you will be metal smithing them.  Points can be tough getting the correct angle for your setting.  Somebody correct me if I'm wrong as I don't smithe!!!!!  hide

So, Krystee, would you just go with a basic 'oval' shape in that area for a start??
When people talk about making the shape of the cab fit the shape of the design.....that doesn't match with an oval on that location.
Is this an 'exception to that rule' or am I just 'missing something'????
Report Spam   Logged

Ciao,
Carol M
"Pursue Your Passions....."
"Imagine the Possibilities!"
"Mistakes are simply a form of practice!"
"People who never make mistakes.....probably never do anything!"

Carol M
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Gender: Female
Posts: 1028



View Profile
« Reply #12 on: June 25, 2013, 10:10:56 am »

You've been given GREAT advice!!!  I agree with Helene about not starting too big or too small.  I always go for color and pattern balance.  It doesn't always work for me but, this was what I saw:  (the white would probably be the top of the cab as the black looks "heavier")



Also, I would probably not start with points on your first cab since you will be metal smithing them.  Points can be tough getting the correct angle for your setting.  Somebody correct me if I'm wrong as I don't smithe!!!!!  hide

Thanks Krystee, et. al.,
Re go for an oval because of the difficulty silversmithing it......I've done 'bought cabs' with points before and so I'm not too worried about that part.

My problem with ovals is that they only really work if the actual stone is fabulous.
I'm not expecting this to turn into either fabulous color or banding,  so think I want to go with a less traditional shape.

In reality, the whole reason for my getting into lapidary was because I wanted to learn to do 'designer cabs' so I can use them in my own jewelry pieces.

I'm afraid if I did this as an oval, I'd never make it into any jewelry, and it's at a nice place in the stone so [for better or worse] that's my reasoning.

[I'm telling myself, to avoid suicide] The whole slab wasn't that expensive [I got two slabs for about $5 total] so if I totally destroy them, life will still go on.

I think I'm going to pre-form all of the shapes and work on all of them together to do each phase of the cutting, grinding, sanding and polishing so I'm not spending all my time changing discs and maybe I'll end up with one reasonably decent one to make some jewelry out of.

Well, here goes nothin'!
Geronimo!!!   yes yippie
Report Spam   Logged

Ciao,
Carol M
"Pursue Your Passions....."
"Imagine the Possibilities!"
"Mistakes are simply a form of practice!"
"People who never make mistakes.....probably never do anything!"

tntmom
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Gender: Female
Posts: 1963



View Profile WWW
« Reply #13 on: June 25, 2013, 10:24:51 am »

I think that's an excellent idea, do them all!!!!!   yippie  I just drew an oval because that was a standard shape in Photoshop and easy to do on the fly :).  I usually do free forms though and a kite/shield shape instead of the oval would be pretty cool if the black were to remain at the top.

I agree with the others, I think E looks like a great cab!
Report Spam   Logged

~Krystee

Self Employed at Kristinegniotdesigns on Etsy https://www.etsy.com/shop/KristineGniotDesigns?ref=hdr_shop_menu
Facebook business page:  https://www.facebook.com/kristinegniotdesigns?ref=bookmarks
Proud member of East Kingco Rock Club:  http://www.eastkingco.org/index.php

Yesterday is history.  Tomorrow is a mystery.  Today is a gift, that's why it's called The Present.

mirkaba
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Gender: Male
Posts: 2303



View Profile
« Reply #14 on: June 25, 2013, 12:30:43 pm »

I think Kristee is right. Do them all! Go for it.....Look for balance in color and shaping. Do what feels or looks good. Learn as you go. Some things will work better for you than others. It is after all a learning experience...........:)
Report Spam   Logged

Bob

Gathering dust in Montana.
Carol M
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Gender: Female
Posts: 1028



View Profile
« Reply #15 on: June 25, 2013, 12:33:36 pm »

I think that's an excellent idea, do them all!!!!!   yippie  I just drew an oval because that was a standard shape in Photoshop and easy to do on the fly :).  I usually do free forms though and a kite/shield shape instead of the oval would be pretty cool if the black were to remain at the top.

I agree with the others, I think E looks like a great cab!

Since everyone likes the E cab location and since several people have mentioned a 'kite' shape, I'm tweaking the shape of the preform to be a kite shape with the dark part at the top [per Krystee's suggestion].

I'll let you know how I make out.
GULP.....WELL HERE GOES!!
Report Spam   Logged

Ciao,
Carol M
"Pursue Your Passions....."
"Imagine the Possibilities!"
"Mistakes are simply a form of practice!"
"People who never make mistakes.....probably never do anything!"

Carol M
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Gender: Female
Posts: 1028



View Profile
« Reply #16 on: June 26, 2013, 12:01:43 am »

Well, I have to say I'M IN LOVE WITH MY LITTLE AMERITOOL 4" TRIM SAW!!!!    yes
It's sweeeeet.   It does EXACTLY what I hoped it would do.
It's a snap to use and a breeze to clean up afterward.

I'm also IN LOVE WITH MY NEW AMERIGOOL 8" FLAT LAP!!!!   yes 
It's also sweeeeeet.  It also is easier to use than I expected.

Krystee, I tried a thing to wash and dry the discs in the Flat Lap, when you move on to the next grit...... and it's FABULOUS.
I think I read this somewhere, but I can't recall where, but it was sticking in my mind so I thought I'd give it a try.

1 - When you're done using one disc, just take the waste water cup and empty it into a bucket, or whatever you use for waste water and put it back at flat lap drain pipe. 
2 - Fill the clean water cup with clean water;
3 - Turn on the flat lap with the dirty disc and run it a full speed and pour the clean water over the disc [preferably near the centre] and swosh, the clean water washes all the dirt off the disc and bonus...because the disc is moving quickly, it washes the inside of the black water shield [totally clean] and the dirty water goes into the bottom and flushes out through the drain line into the dirty cup....and further bonus, the spinning of the disc at full speed totally dries the disc off so you just have to pop it off and put it in the bag [clean and dry];
4 - Dry the inside of the shield if you want but it's totally clean of grunge like it went through a car wash.  Then just pop on the next color disc.
5 - Dump the [now relatively full] waste water cup and put it back in place;  And put clean water in the clean water reservoir.
Done!!   yippie   

Even though it took me 5 notations to explain it, the whole process between discs is maybe 30 sec to a minute.  WAY EASIER THAN I WAS EXPECTING!!!   ura
Report Spam   Logged

Ciao,
Carol M
"Pursue Your Passions....."
"Imagine the Possibilities!"
"Mistakes are simply a form of practice!"
"People who never make mistakes.....probably never do anything!"

bgast1
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Gender: Male
Posts: 1350



View Profile
« Reply #17 on: June 26, 2013, 12:07:38 am »

My son has a big compressor. I usually use it to dry the discs and sometimes use it before using a disc. i don't know if this method is really advisable but it seems to keep my discs cutting well. I used to wash my discs until I discovered the compressor thing.

I've thought about getting that little 4" saw as well.
Report Spam   Logged

Carol M
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Gender: Female
Posts: 1028



View Profile
« Reply #18 on: June 26, 2013, 12:12:57 am »

My son has a big compressor. I usually use it to dry the discs and sometimes use it before using a disc. i don't know if this method is really advisable but it seems to keep my discs cutting well. I used to wash my discs until I discovered the compressor thing.

I've thought about getting that little 4" saw as well.

When you say discs, Are you using an Ameritool Flat Lap??  If yes, try out this 'car wash' method I mentioned and let me know what you think.

Re the little 4" saw - I love it and I love that the little saw blades are not so expensive, yet it does wonderfully for agate.
Report Spam   Logged

Ciao,
Carol M
"Pursue Your Passions....."
"Imagine the Possibilities!"
"Mistakes are simply a form of practice!"
"People who never make mistakes.....probably never do anything!"

Carol M
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Gender: Female
Posts: 1028



View Profile
« Reply #19 on: June 26, 2013, 12:16:16 am »

New Question regarding this process -

Brazilian Agate - at least the slab I have, is quite translucent.  Almost like stained glass.
I was thinking of mounting my favorite cab [when I decide which that is] in an Argentium bezel that's two-sided, with an Argentium simple bail so it can hung on a thin chain, and be seen from either side equally well.

With that in mind, I'm making both sides of each cab equally finished.
The whole slab was only 4-5mm thick so I was thinking I'd just bevel the girdle the same on both front and back, but that means that the actual face of the cab is flat on the front and flat on the back.

Is there any 'law' against a flat face on a cab like this??   dunno   hide
Report Spam   Logged

Ciao,
Carol M
"Pursue Your Passions....."
"Imagine the Possibilities!"
"Mistakes are simply a form of practice!"
"People who never make mistakes.....probably never do anything!"

lithicbeads
Global Moderator
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 4927


View Profile
« Reply #20 on: June 26, 2013, 06:59:59 am »

 Absolutely not. If  the quality of your work on both sides is top notch you are fine . A little dome helps to keep reflections down and makes it easier for the eye to be drawn into the stones from oblique angles however. Experimenting is all too rare.
Report Spam   Logged

Carol M
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Gender: Female
Posts: 1028



View Profile
« Reply #21 on: June 26, 2013, 12:44:40 pm »

Absolutely not. If  the quality of your work on both sides is top notch you are fine . A little dome helps to keep reflections down and makes it easier for the eye to be drawn into the stones from oblique angles however. Experimenting is all too rare.

OK!!!   bricks
Thanks for that info.  I'll go back and try to make some [albiet shallow] dome on both sides.
Report Spam   Logged

Ciao,
Carol M
"Pursue Your Passions....."
"Imagine the Possibilities!"
"Mistakes are simply a form of practice!"
"People who never make mistakes.....probably never do anything!"

lithicbeads
Global Moderator
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 4927


View Profile
« Reply #22 on: June 26, 2013, 12:56:44 pm »

 I agree cut away the more the better. If you preform the piece and you have doubts change it. A lot of rock has been turned to dust by the folks on this forum while learning , you will not be the first.
Report Spam   Logged

Carol M
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Gender: Female
Posts: 1028



View Profile
« Reply #23 on: June 26, 2013, 02:17:28 pm »

Absolutely not. If  the quality of your work on both sides is top notch you are fine . A little dome helps to keep reflections down and makes it easier for the eye to be drawn into the stones from oblique angles however. Experimenting is all too rare.

OK!!!   bricks
Thanks for that info.  I'll go back and try to make some [albiet shallow] dome on both sides.


In retrospect, because the total slab is not real thick [like 4mm total], I think I'm going to consider one side to be the 'front' and do as much dome as I can on that side, and leave the 'back' basically flat but polished and exposed so that light will shine through a bit. 
If I try to dome both sides I won't have anything left for a bezel to grab.
Report Spam   Logged

Ciao,
Carol M
"Pursue Your Passions....."
"Imagine the Possibilities!"
"Mistakes are simply a form of practice!"
"People who never make mistakes.....probably never do anything!"

bgast1
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Gender: Male
Posts: 1350



View Profile
« Reply #24 on: June 27, 2013, 10:06:33 am »

My son has a big compressor. I usually use it to dry the discs and sometimes use it before using a disc. i don't know if this method is really advisable but it seems to keep my discs cutting well. I used to wash my discs until I discovered the compressor thing.

I've thought about getting that little 4" saw as well.

When you say discs, Are you using an Ameritool Flat Lap??  If yes, try out this 'car wash' method I mentioned and let me know what you think.

Re the little 4" saw - I love it and I love that the little saw blades are not so expensive, yet it does wonderfully for agate.

I used to do exactly what you do when my shop was inside the house. But now that it is out in the garage and my splash guard is kind of runined because of using a disc that is too thick for my Ameritool it is not near as neat and clean as when it was inside. The compressor still works better overall for me, but then not everyone is fortunate to have a big compressor available.

I may still get that Ameritool saw. It would come in very handy for expensive materials that are not too large.
Report Spam   Logged

CoyoteRainbow
Jr. Member
**
Offline Offline

Gender: Male
Posts: 93


V.I.P.


View Profile WWW
« Reply #25 on: June 27, 2013, 10:21:02 am »

I have the ameritool 6" trim saw. The 4" was to small for the work I do.
I use it to hand slab small pieces of gemstone, it's well worth the price.
Report Spam   Logged

Carol M
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Gender: Female
Posts: 1028



View Profile
« Reply #26 on: June 27, 2013, 03:22:31 pm »

I have the ameritool 6" trim saw. The 4" was to small for the work I do.
I use it to hand slab small pieces of gemstone, it's well worth the price.

Oddly enough, the 4" trim saw I bought, I bought directly from Ameritool and they don't offer the 6" one. 
The 4" is a 1/4hp and can also take a 5" blade but they don't even mention a 6" one. 

Where did you get it??

Anyway, when I spoke with Wendell from Ameritool he said that you could probably cut material with the 4" blade as thick as 1-3/4" or so and I can't imagine needing to even do that thickness, so I'm a happy camper.

At this stage, I'm really into learning lapidary so I can learn to make my own 'designer cabs' in whatever shape I want with whatever part of the slab I want, and since I really don't like to 'wear heavy rocks' for jewelry, I don't think I'm gonna need bigger than 1-3/4" thick of anything.

I am curious though...where did you get an Ameritool 6" trim saw??
Report Spam   Logged

Ciao,
Carol M
"Pursue Your Passions....."
"Imagine the Possibilities!"
"Mistakes are simply a form of practice!"
"People who never make mistakes.....probably never do anything!"

CoyoteRainbow
Jr. Member
**
Offline Offline

Gender: Male
Posts: 93


V.I.P.


View Profile WWW
« Reply #27 on: June 27, 2013, 03:26:41 pm »

I purchased it new, dropped shipped from an eBay seller.
Report Spam   Logged

Carol M
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Gender: Female
Posts: 1028



View Profile
« Reply #28 on: June 27, 2013, 03:38:25 pm »

I purchased it new, dropped shipped from an eBay seller.

Hmmm, I've seen Hi-Tech 6" ones, but not Ameritool 6" trim saws.  Not that it really matters.....

Oh well, glad you like it.  It's lovely to have a tool you really like isn't it!!!
Report Spam   Logged

Ciao,
Carol M
"Pursue Your Passions....."
"Imagine the Possibilities!"
"Mistakes are simply a form of practice!"
"People who never make mistakes.....probably never do anything!"

sealdaddy
Guest
« Reply #29 on: June 27, 2013, 03:39:21 pm »

If you want to keep your 1st layout ideas...here's an area you might have over looked.


* brazil agate3.png (263.66 KB, 696x673 - viewed 6 times.)
Report Spam   Logged
Carol M
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Gender: Female
Posts: 1028



View Profile
« Reply #30 on: June 27, 2013, 04:15:17 pm »

If you want to keep your 1st layout ideas...here's an area you might have over looked.


Thanks Don, Actually it's all cut up into the preforms and I was grinding, and sanding [but making the two main surfaces flat] and I got up to the 600 grit disc, when I got the word that that's a 'no-no' so now I've gotta go back to tweaking the angles.

Actually, it's interesting that when I was doing the flat version at the 600 grit when you're starting to see a lovely shine, the center of one of my flat cabs wasn't polishing and so I think it was lower there than around the center, so ....a lesson learned.

I'm not sure how far back I have to go to get the shape I need.
I basic full kit came with -
180 Mesh Metal Bond Diamond Disc, hydraulically pressed to a backing plate
325 Mesh Diamond Sanding Disc
600 Mesh Diamond Sanding Disc
1200 Mesh Diamond Sanding Disc
White Polish pad with 14,000 mesh diamond compound

I also added,
100 Mesh Metal Bond Diamond Disc, hydraulically pressed to a backing plate [which is a real 'peach'.  It trims the preform really well.]
and at Krystee's suggestion I ordered two additional backing plates and a
220 mesh and a
3000 mesh Diamond Sanding discs.

My guess is that I shouldn't go back to the grinding discs because I'm afraid it'd be toooo aggressive when the flat cab is so thin [originally 4-5mm thick]
My hunch though is that I might try [on one of the cabs that I like least] to go back to the 325 mesh and see if that forms the angle without eating the stone up.
If that's too strong, I'll move milder and if that's too mild I'll go grittier but at least that way I won't destroy the few I actually like.
Oddly enough, "E" that everyone seemed to think was the best, doesn't really 'turn my crank' much.
The dark lines seem to be paler now and so it's not that wowie.
The one I'm liking the most is "A" which looked so dark but is getting quite nice.

So....on it goes.
Back to the grind....[giggle] ......or should I say 'sandbox'  walker

Report Spam   Logged

Ciao,
Carol M
"Pursue Your Passions....."
"Imagine the Possibilities!"
"Mistakes are simply a form of practice!"
"People who never make mistakes.....probably never do anything!"

sealdaddy
Guest
« Reply #31 on: June 27, 2013, 05:43:57 pm »

I like A, B, C and F, myself
What were you saying about a no-no?
Report Spam   Logged
Carol M
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Gender: Female
Posts: 1028



View Profile
« Reply #32 on: June 27, 2013, 06:03:57 pm »

I like A, B, C and F, myself
What were you saying about a no-no?

Re the 'no-no' - I was saying that the slab is relatively thin and very translucent like stained glass, and I thought I'd make both sides visible and let light shine through by running a bezel around the edge but not putting a solid [or even perforated] back.
To do this, because there's not much material thickness, I was going to make both the front and back flat and was wondering if there was some 'lapidary law' against flat and was told not to go flat.
Since I don't think I can dome much even on one side, if I want to have any bezel left at all, I'm going to just dome the front and leave the back relatively flat.  I'll just dome it enough to be able to polish the center.
I was getting a 'dull spot' in the centre of one of the cabs indicating that it was a tad lower than the surrounding area.

So that's what I was saying was a 'no-no'. hide

Re your comments, about liking A, B, C and F - one interesting thing I'm discovering about this process, is how much the stone material changes as you polish it
Colors that were not visible before, show up, and sometimes colors that were there, disappear.
It's kind of exciting to see it evolve, but I'm sure it could also be very disappointing if one you really like, disappears.  dunno
Report Spam   Logged

Ciao,
Carol M
"Pursue Your Passions....."
"Imagine the Possibilities!"
"Mistakes are simply a form of practice!"
"People who never make mistakes.....probably never do anything!"

lithicbeads
Global Moderator
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 4927


View Profile
« Reply #33 on: June 27, 2013, 07:38:16 pm »

 With certain stones the polish basically ruins them, it makes them bland . People here are a little too concerned with a high polish finish in my opinion . Matte and high matte finishes can maintain color and interest in cabs that look washed out with a high polish . The crucial thing in my book is that the polish whatever it is , be uniform and suit the stone.
Report Spam   Logged

Carol M
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Gender: Female
Posts: 1028



View Profile
« Reply #34 on: June 27, 2013, 10:11:27 pm »

With certain stones the polish basically ruins them, it makes them bland . People here are a little too concerned with a high polish finish in my opinion . Matte and high matte finishes can maintain color and interest in cabs that look washed out with a high polish . The crucial thing in my book is that the polish whatever it is , be uniform and suit the stone.

Well, I have to say, I LOVE THAT KRYSTEE SHINE.

This is not to say that other finishes matte and high matte are not good too, but I'm a sucker for that 'wet look'.

With some stones, like Indian Paint Stone, I think that the matte finish is fabulous, but with many agates, I do love that high gloss finish if you can get it......or at least you can TRY to get it.
Report Spam   Logged

Ciao,
Carol M
"Pursue Your Passions....."
"Imagine the Possibilities!"
"Mistakes are simply a form of practice!"
"People who never make mistakes.....probably never do anything!"

lithicbeads
Global Moderator
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 4927


View Profile
« Reply #35 on: June 27, 2013, 10:13:50 pm »

 Those finishes are done perfectly in a vibe tumbler as are polished finishes.
Report Spam   Logged

Carol M
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Gender: Female
Posts: 1028



View Profile
« Reply #36 on: June 27, 2013, 10:29:53 pm »

Those finishes are done perfectly in a vibe tumbler as are polished finishes.

"So many toys....and so little time"
Report Spam   Logged

Ciao,
Carol M
"Pursue Your Passions....."
"Imagine the Possibilities!"
"Mistakes are simply a form of practice!"
"People who never make mistakes.....probably never do anything!"

jakesrocks
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Gender: Male
Posts: 2112


New Toy.


View Profile
« Reply #37 on: June 27, 2013, 11:46:32 pm »

OK Carol. If you haven't already cut it, here you go.
1st cut -- A straight cut between C & D, stopping just short of E.
2nd cut -- Between D & E, meeting your 1st cut.
3rd cut -- Along opposite side of E, stopping just shy of F.
4th cut -- Along the long side of F, to just past the end. This will produce a diamond shaped cutout from between E & F, which can also be cabbed.
5th cut --  Across the bottom of F, meeting the previous cut.
6th cut -- The long left side of A, stopping just beyond the point.
7th cut --  Along opposite side of A, meeting previous cut.
8th cut --  Between B & C, to just beyond the end of C.
9th cut --  Along opposite side of B, meeting the previous cut.
10th cut --  short cut at bottom  C, to remove it from the remaining center piece.

This will leave you much of the center to also cab.
Report Spam   Logged

A day spent without learning something new, is a day wasted.

Don

jakesrocks
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Gender: Male
Posts: 2112


New Toy.


View Profile
« Reply #38 on: June 28, 2013, 07:46:27 am »

OOPS, my bad. I see that you've already cut the piece. hide

Anyway, since the slab is thin, you could try just rounding the edges. Flat polish both faces, and if you have a grooving tool you could try groove wrapping them.
Report Spam   Logged

A day spent without learning something new, is a day wasted.

Don

Carol M
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Gender: Female
Posts: 1028



View Profile
« Reply #39 on: June 28, 2013, 11:48:41 am »

OOPS, my bad. I see that you've already cut the piece. hide

Anyway, since the slab is thin, you could try just rounding the edges. Flat polish both faces, and if you have a grooving tool you could try groove wrapping them.

No worries, and thank you for the kind consideration of all those directions on cutting.  I'll review 'the principle' of cutting it that way so I can learn for future slabs.

Thanks again
Report Spam   Logged

Ciao,
Carol M
"Pursue Your Passions....."
"Imagine the Possibilities!"
"Mistakes are simply a form of practice!"
"People who never make mistakes.....probably never do anything!"

Carol M
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Gender: Female
Posts: 1028



View Profile
« Reply #40 on: July 05, 2013, 06:39:34 pm »

I'm thinking of suicide!!!! bricks

Since I had some SuperGlue from my Arbor Dust Collector project and bought some large nails with, I decided to dop my little cab-wantabees.  The SuperGlue works wonderfully and makes it way easier for me to hang onto the little suckers.   ura

After getting my knuckles rapped for proposing a flat front and flat exposed back on my Brazilian Agate, I went back to my 180 grit grinding disc and put some lovely multi-bevels in all of them.   I didn't think they were thick enough but they'll be fine.
That's not the frustration.

So, I proceeded through my various grits perfecting my shape but trying not to make the whole thing too thin so I didn't go nutz on the middle of the top thinking I'd leave some material to remove with the various finer grits. [big mistake]  So far so good and things were going well. 
I'm now at the Blue [1200 grit] and trying like mad to smooth the &^%$ top that I left 'only lightly touched' during each grit level.
At 1200 grit, it's taking forever to try to get those tiny middles smooth, so now I'm poised with my Hari-Kari knife pointed at my stomach trying to avoid suicide [ERGH!!!!]

I decided to stop and make supper and go back at it tomorrow, when I'm going to back way-the-heck up to some grit that will remove material.
I have 6 small cabs and each has only a tiny amount of flat in the middle [like 1mm x 2 mm or so] but I want it to be done right.

How far back should I go to smooth this last little bit??  Should I go all the way back to the grinding disc [180 grit] or should I just go as far as my 220 roughest sanding disc, or what??   dunno

"Tortured in Toronto"
Report Spam   Logged

Ciao,
Carol M
"Pursue Your Passions....."
"Imagine the Possibilities!"
"Mistakes are simply a form of practice!"
"People who never make mistakes.....probably never do anything!"

Carol M
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Gender: Female
Posts: 1028



View Profile
« Reply #41 on: July 05, 2013, 06:42:56 pm »

Another question 'for all you Doppers out there'  [don't I sound like "The Big Bopper" ??]

Anyway, if you dop the cab and go through the grits, how do you deal with the back??  If you want it nice and smooth and polished??

Do you do the whole front all the way to completion and then remove the dop and go back through the whole back with all the grits???
Report Spam   Logged

Ciao,
Carol M
"Pursue Your Passions....."
"Imagine the Possibilities!"
"Mistakes are simply a form of practice!"
"People who never make mistakes.....probably never do anything!"

jakesrocks
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Gender: Male
Posts: 2112


New Toy.


View Profile
« Reply #42 on: July 05, 2013, 06:59:18 pm »

Carol, you might try working from the center out to the edge, or at least until you blend the flat spot in. Always keep the stone in motion, turning it and rocking from side to side. If you let the stone sit still even for a second or two, you'll start to form a new flat spot. Start with the 325 mesh disc.
Report Spam   Logged

A day spent without learning something new, is a day wasted.

Don

lithicbeads
Global Moderator
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 4927


View Profile
« Reply #43 on: July 05, 2013, 07:00:46 pm »

I like to do the back first freehand .

This requires cutting and coarse sanding of the bevel shape at the same time.
Getting out the flat spot is doable with your coarse sand pad but it beats it up a bit .If you 180 hard disc is pretty unworn that can be very aggressive and remove more material than you like especially with your thin rough .
Thinking outside the box a bit here you could go to the hardware store and get a few sheets of silicon carbide wet -dry paper. It comes in rectangles or squares. You cut a hole in the center so you can mount it above one of your sanding pads,  preferably your coarsest.You cut it round  before you lay it on the mounted disc. It may be smaller than the disc but that is fine just work away from the outer edge a bit.You need to use a washer if possible to spread the force of the nut that holds the disc and the sic sheet down . The force of the disc spinning will flatten the sic disc adequately . Watch the edge as it can be sharp . This can be used wet or dry .
Dry the dust is a health issue but it sands amazingly quickly and will remove your flat if it is of reasonable size. As heat is an issue you just touch roll and lift. It should work just fine wet and even better if you restrict the water a bit . Sic sands very quickly if you use 100 grit saving much abuse to your diamond pads.
Report Spam   Logged

helens
Guest
« Reply #44 on: July 05, 2013, 07:12:00 pm »

I took a cabbing class for my first effort, at the local rock shop... I figure I should learn how to do it the 'right' way before I ran off to figure out how to do it 'my' way (every shortcut I could think of)... and it paid off pretty well:). First because I learned exactly the right equipment that pros use, and how to use it... and also the actual technical stuff (templating, cabbing to spec-forgot the right term already, pencil drawing the bevel, coloring the entire top with marker to make sure no spots are missed, then going through each and every grit, and recoloring each grit with marker again to ensure that there were no missing spots).

So to answer your question from what I learned, and not my 'winging' it method of no markers, no templates, and tumbler to polish, you should color your whole rock from the bevel point up with marker, and start at the lowest level grit for the tops again. I was told to NEVER go back to a higher grit from a lower grit without washing the cab, to avoid contamination.

For reference, this is the first cab I ever made - which happened to be the first cab I actually even noticed before I took the class (all I paid attention to before that were faceted gemstones, carvings and opals/fire agates) - ok, I did not use a template, I didn't want a 'standard' shape, and the instructor humored me after I insisted I could hand free-form any shape fast, hand free-forming molten glass nearly every day for years - even with that background, cabbing was a unique experience:


This is the side (I did not get the left bevel a perfect match with the right bevel... but I wanted that dome up top to be a bit bigger, because to me, it was a better balance, as a partial teardrop where the top is fat and the bottom tapered):


Like you... I ended up having to go back a few wheels several times when I got impatient... so this little cab took me 3 hours. But those were an invaluable 3 hours that taught me the basis I could launch my own creativity from.

This was my 3rd cab ever, I bought a cabking 1 wheel machine after I made my 2nd cab:


My 4th cab with my own machine (6th cab ever):


I'm showing these off to empathize about wanting to do unique weird shapes that fit into no templates:P.

I'm also showing them off to point out that it might be a good idea to take a class at your local rock shop, because before you can depart on your own, you should have a base to depart from:).

Report Spam   Logged
lithicbeads
Global Moderator
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 4927


View Profile
« Reply #45 on: July 05, 2013, 07:36:10 pm »

 There is an even faster unusual method of sanding out the flat on the top. This will sound odd but it is quite fast but should be done outdoors due to a bit of dust. I would not make this routine but you can reshape the very top quickly this way. This is hand held dry sanding using wood working sand paper. Cheap and readily available to experiment with . You can get a sheet of 4/0 which is medium coarse and hold the sheet so it covers your palm of one hand and twist and rotate the dopped stone on the paper with the other . You can cup your palm a bit to change the curvature  and even use it over the grooves between your fingers for other shapes . I try to go to a finer paper before returning to the machine but that is not required for agate .
you may find it too slow but perhaps not . I bang the dust off the paper before storing it in a plastic bag. I think it is a fun technique  at times.
Report Spam   Logged

helens
Guest
« Reply #46 on: July 05, 2013, 07:44:29 pm »

The purist cabbers will probably beat me up for saying this...

But I tumble finish cabs in a vibe tumbler when the rock can take it. This because it is a PAIN to change my single grinding wheel for every single grit, and also because I don't have the wheel between 1200 and 50,000... I don't have a 3000 or 14,000 wheel. So tumble polishing makes the most sense for me. Now I get my cabs to 1200 polish, so the tumbler is really only putting a final polish on MOST of the time. There are other times, where I only go to 220 grit, then tumble the rest of the way starting with 220 grit in the tumbler. Some rocks cannot take tumbler polishing, so you have to learn this from trial and error of cracking beautiful or pricey cabs.

That said... a tumbler will put a glass finish on both sides... so to me, a 'hand' finish = completely raw backside. That naked backside is the ONLY way I know that it was hand polished, given how close the appearance is to tumbler polish.

I know lots of pro hand cabbers will polish the backside... but if I were in the cab buying market, and I wanted hand cut only, I would look for raw backs, just because it is undeniable evidence of hand polishing.

To give you a visual... this is one batch of tumble polished 'cabs' and small slabs for my specimen box:


I save up my shaped cabs to polish at once when I'm on a cabbing roll (or when I want to finish a single cab really badly).

I don't sell, I am only doing this for my own collecting right now. Cabbing is just so I can get a beautiful specimen rock smaller so I can fit more rocks into a display case, but it gives you an idea of an alternate way of doing it.
Report Spam   Logged
tntmom
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Gender: Female
Posts: 1963



View Profile WWW
« Reply #47 on: July 05, 2013, 09:48:39 pm »

I use the sharpie marker method with my cabs as long as they are not porous or pitty.  Works for me!  I always do my backs, starting with the back then the front and then back bevel the edge when I get to 600.  I don't dop though unless I'm doing really tiny stones so, my advice might not help much  hide

Some of Franks ideas sound intriguing.  I would go back to 325 but some of the other suggestions sound like it might be faster.
Report Spam   Logged

~Krystee

Self Employed at Kristinegniotdesigns on Etsy https://www.etsy.com/shop/KristineGniotDesigns?ref=hdr_shop_menu
Facebook business page:  https://www.facebook.com/kristinegniotdesigns?ref=bookmarks
Proud member of East Kingco Rock Club:  http://www.eastkingco.org/index.php

Yesterday is history.  Tomorrow is a mystery.  Today is a gift, that's why it's called The Present.

Carol M
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Gender: Female
Posts: 1028



View Profile
« Reply #48 on: July 05, 2013, 10:39:00 pm »

Carol, you might try working from the center out to the edge, or at least until you blend the flat spot in. Always keep the stone in motion, turning it and rocking from side to side. If you let the stone sit still even for a second or two, you'll start to form a new flat spot. Start with the 325 mesh disc.

Actually Don, this is what I was thinking too. 
The spots are so tiny and not totally flat and I don't want to chew up my cab-wantabees, any more than I must.  I didn't create the flat spot by dwelling too long on it.  It was flat to start with and it stayed flat because I was 'strategically' avoiding it.  bricks
Live and learn, eh!!
If I work the 325 disc and it doesn't remove material, I can always go grittier, but at least this way I don't have to redo my whole sequence for a 3rd time.  yes
Report Spam   Logged

Ciao,
Carol M
"Pursue Your Passions....."
"Imagine the Possibilities!"
"Mistakes are simply a form of practice!"
"People who never make mistakes.....probably never do anything!"

Carol M
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Gender: Female
Posts: 1028



View Profile
« Reply #49 on: July 05, 2013, 10:50:41 pm »

I'm also showing them off to point out that it might be a good idea to take a class at your local rock shop, because before you can depart on your own, you should have a base to depart from:).

WOW, they're lovely Helen,

Re taking a class.  I did take a class [private lessons even] from my Lapidary Guru but he taught on a CabKing sort of machine.
I really love the Ameritool Flat Lap and just basically find it 'more fun' for me to use than the wheel type but that's just me.

I don't think that the problem is not knowing what to do.....it's bringing myself to go back 'yet again' to fix a different screw up from the one I made the first time.
I have to tell myself that these little 'cab-wantabes' are my first cabs done on my own with no one looking over my shoulder, and on a different system than I learned on....so in retrospect I guess I was just venting my frustration. [sheepish grin]  hide

To quote Scarlett O'Hara "After all.....Tomorrow is another day". yes
Report Spam   Logged

Ciao,
Carol M
"Pursue Your Passions....."
"Imagine the Possibilities!"
"Mistakes are simply a form of practice!"
"People who never make mistakes.....probably never do anything!"

lithicbeads
Global Moderator
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 4927


View Profile
« Reply #50 on: July 05, 2013, 11:09:11 pm »

 I just did a dry sanding session to try out things . The wood sandpaper only worked out on very undercutting jade.
  The dry sanding with sic worked very well on the 60 grit paper. I used a 60 grit expando belt and laid it on a piece of wood and sanded a piece of jasper back and forth for a couple of minutes and sanded out the grind marks from 80 grit hard grinding wheel in that time on the top of a 35 mm cab . Plenty effective . You load the belt sanding in one spot until the belt turns white . It is often just as aggressive when it is moderately loaded. When you are done you can rinse it off outside .
Report Spam   Logged

Carol M
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Gender: Female
Posts: 1028



View Profile
« Reply #51 on: July 05, 2013, 11:13:02 pm »

I just did a dry sanding session to try out things . The wood sandpaper only worked out on very undercutting jade.
  The dry sanding with sic worked very well on the 60 grit paper. I used a 60 grit expando belt and laid it on a piece of wood and sanded a piece of jasper back and forth for a couple of minutes and sanded out the grind marks from 80 grit hard grinding wheel in that time on the top of a 35 mm cab . Plenty effective . You load the belt sanding in one spot until the belt turns white . It is often just as aggressive when it is moderately loaded. When you are done you can rinse it off outside .

Thanks for this info but I have an Ameritool Flat Lap......no belt.
Report Spam   Logged

Ciao,
Carol M
"Pursue Your Passions....."
"Imagine the Possibilities!"
"Mistakes are simply a form of practice!"
"People who never make mistakes.....probably never do anything!"

Carol M
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Gender: Female
Posts: 1028



View Profile
« Reply #52 on: July 05, 2013, 11:14:39 pm »

I'm afraid I'm becoming a 'bit of a purist' [what am I saying 'becoming', now that I think of it, I've always been a purist] and since I'm not in any big rush or anything, I just had an idea of a way to deal with the backs when I remove the dop stick.

If I was doing it Krystee's way [with no dop stick] I wouldn't have this problem, but I tried to do it that way and had a heck of a time.  bricks
Krystee must have fingers like a surgeon because I found it really hard to hang onto the little suckers.  The dop stick at least fixed that problem.  yes

So, to fix this [how to finish the backs problem] I think I'll just set them aside until I do my next batch, which will probably be very shortly after these are finished, and then when I have each of the successive discs in place [for the new dopped cab pre-forms] I'll just run this last batch through sequentially, keeping the backs flat but polishing them, leaving the small bevel around the perimeter.  
I'll basically do the backs after I remove the dopping stick.   Then if there's any mark from the SuperGlue, I'll remove that at the same time.

Does anybody think I'll have a problem with this??
Report Spam   Logged

Ciao,
Carol M
"Pursue Your Passions....."
"Imagine the Possibilities!"
"Mistakes are simply a form of practice!"
"People who never make mistakes.....probably never do anything!"

lithicbeads
Global Moderator
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 4927


View Profile
« Reply #53 on: July 05, 2013, 11:21:45 pm »

 If you can scrape or soak any remnant super glue off it will help. a little will sand off easily but a little pile will be a problem at times . It is very easy to tilt the back and over sand some part of the edge and very difficult to sand off enough of the edge or bottom to bring back perfect symmetry so we all have to be very careful on the back edges. When you can do perfect backs the fronts will seem easy.
Report Spam   Logged

helens
Guest
« Reply #54 on: July 06, 2013, 01:14:31 am »

I don't dop either... at the rock club, they have melted wax pots going for the class period, but at home, I am not on it long enough to justify heating dop wax. So I lose fingernails... (not being capable of remembering to wear gloves, or taping my fingers with bandaids, which worked when I remembered them dunno )

I read on an opal site that the best 'dop' to use for very small stones is double sided picture hanging tape, the white kind. I have not tried it, but makes sense. I don't think this would work too well with larger stones due to the weight, but again, with larger stones, it's easier not to dop... despite the fingernails:).

Nothing wrong with being a purist... and you have way more control over each stone by hand. Also, it is much faster, it takes a full week to run through a vibe cycle (tho you put more stones in at a time). There's no time savings, just labor savings.  Also, the vibe tumbler can do a real number on a wide variety of stones, from eating druzy completely to cracking some incredible stones. It certainly exposes all soft spots in a stone, and in some cases with super soft stones, it can literally grind them to powdered mush if you aren't watching carefully.

It's just such a hassle for me to change wheels that this is the best solution for most stones, but it's NOT the best solution of all. Hand polishing is always superior when the choice is there, and the finish on hand polish cannot be rivaled with any stones except the most uniform rocks (montanas and brazils being among those).

That said, I DO hand polish really pricey stones that I don't want to risk in the tumbler. I don't always tumble finish... but that missing wheel from 1200 really makes it hard to get a mirror polish. I need to just buy the 3000 wheel:P.

I totally understand the not wanting to redo screw-ups... it can be really frustrating to go back over something that you already feel is done... I think everyone has those. I just throw them into an unfinished bowl, and if if I feel like redoing them later, I do, and if not, they're not going anywhere.

I think you'll love cabbing, it's one of those JUST DO IT things, and you will learn as you go! And you can say you did all your jewelry from start to finish, which is wonderful:).
Report Spam   Logged
helens
Guest
« Reply #55 on: July 06, 2013, 01:20:36 am »

As for backs, for the most part, I start shaping with perfectly flat slabs, front and back. If they are not (like saw marks or that little dent from the end of cuts), I fix that first like Frank does.

So when I say 'rough backs' I don't mean saw marks, dents or bulges, just not mirror polished like the tumbler will put on. I also bevel the backs before I start shaping the front, because it's easier to pick up off the table if you have a small bevel in the back to grab from. 

I don't know how dopping with crazy glue works. I would think that makes it hard to remove later, but I haven't tried it.
Report Spam   Logged
3rdRockFromTheFun
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Gender: Male
Posts: 4315


Arfzzz...


View Profile
« Reply #56 on: July 06, 2013, 04:04:16 am »

Wow, something that everybody seems to have missed - I'm surprised!

When you are shaping your stone here are the rules - follow them or I rap your knuckles with a ruler! Nooo not really, but this really is the best way to go about it -

Always shape your stone with your courser grits - up to 325 (you can do a we bit of shaping with that Ameritool semi-rigid 325 disc but you'll go through them far quicker than most) but preferably try and get your shape at 180 or better still the 100 hard pressed disc you bought (good idea btw).

You will still have lots of tiny ridges and what not most likely when you get to your soft discs but that's pretty normal. And, these get smaller and smaller the more you do and better you get at it - don't worry about, just get the shape as close to how you want it as you can on the hard discs.

Shaping with your 1200 or 1500 (blue) disc is a bad idea. You'll be keeping Ameritool in business on blue discs alone. Your shape should be almost perfect (in the sense of perfectly how you want it to end up) by the time you're done with your 325 and at very least by the time you're done with your 600. The blue disc is for removing similar lines and imperfections that are so small they're hard if not impossible to see with the naked eye. I try to get mine to that state before even starting the 600 but there's some room for personal recipes on "the method" here - the one big thing I'm trying to impress is simply to get your shape finito as close as possible before you even hit the colored discs then use those to work out, in succession, whatever you absolutely could not work out with the last wheel.

The concept is that you shape on rough and then each step after that is to remove the scratches left behind by the previous step.

Life is not perfect and you will have ridges and whatnot along the way - but if it requires a lot of pressure or time or discs to get something smoothed - go back a step, smooth it, then proceed.

--

Patterns - this is something we could have a whole forum devoted to and it is probably the one thing other than shape that determines the artistic aesthetic value of a cab (more so than shape when using common shapes like ovals and circles and triangles etc). It is that thing that makes everybody go "WOW!" when the see one of Eric's (Ajo) cabs - the guy just has that something special eye for finding the magic places in rocks and framing them on to cabs.

I like that you're thinking of this right from the get go, however, as you're right - vanilla patterns are a dime a dozen. So - the biggest challenge facing you is not learning to shape and shine cabs (you'll get that no sweat) - but finding those magical patterns. Frank (I think it was Frank - four pages was a loooong time ago!) is so right about cutting shapes in paper or cardboard so that you can move the shape over the stone while the paper blocks out the rest and man what a difference that makes in finding magic! At least for those of us who aren't Eric.

Finally, do exactly what you're doing - ask questions AND hit up the people who's work you've fallen in love with. Krystee really helped me out a lot too - she's why I have my Ameritool. I figured buy the tool that the person who's work you are really into is making and ask them how they use it - and I did - and she was more than accommodating (I love that girl!). Same with patterns, remember the names of those who consistently make patterns you really like and follow them or even ask them for advice. I've got a few I follow on this front - Eric and Helene consistently pop my noggin' when it comes to framing and there are others as well. The KCC is good to watch for this because you get to see the naked stone and preforms along with the final product - it's fascinating to see where some people pulled their patterns from and good for learning.

Hope I helped more than hurt - I tend to over-explain because I like to hear myself talk I reckon - but the points are there if you've survived this point driving

Oh - one final point, it may sound criminal but there is a lot of rock out there that nobody is going to miss if it gets turned to dust - experiment away and you will grind your way to success!
Report Spam   Logged

-frank-

Shop The Eager Beader

3rdRockFromTheFun
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Gender: Male
Posts: 4315


Arfzzz...


View Profile
« Reply #57 on: July 06, 2013, 04:18:19 am »

Oh - I forgot to mention my view on tumbling (vibing actually - that keeps the shape, tumbling tends to round everything off).

If I had a place to put one I would have one here a year ago. I do enjoy hand polishing and there are some things you can do that way that a vibe would probably undo but I gotta say, even being somewhat of a purist I would have no problem at all cramming 99% of everything I do (including carvings) into a vibe. Once my carving gets to a high enough level I'll probably change that view to just wishing I could vibe cabs because carving more complex than I do can involve complex textures and there's also something to be said for just different looks to different methods of polishing with carvings that a vibe could not do (mixed textures, for example - even two high polished but slightly different textures are going to require hand work).

So my view is this - if a tool can do it and not detract from it aesthetically and it's not a matter of showing skill (which is true in some cases and valid in my opinion) then use the tool!

Just my added 2C
Report Spam   Logged

-frank-

Shop The Eager Beader

Carol M
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Gender: Female
Posts: 1028



View Profile
« Reply #58 on: July 06, 2013, 09:35:50 am »

As for backs, for the most part, I start shaping with perfectly flat slabs, front and back. If they are not (like saw marks or that little dent from the end of cuts), I fix that first like Frank does.

So when I say 'rough backs' I don't mean saw marks, dents or bulges, just not mirror polished like the tumbler will put on. I also bevel the backs before I start shaping the front, because it's easier to pick up off the table if you have a small bevel in the back to grab from. 

I don't know how dopping with crazy glue works. I would think that makes it hard to remove later, but I haven't tried it.

Hi Helen,
Re CrazyGlue and how it works, I got it from a Youtube video by DurangoSilver on Cabbing Turquoise - check it out.  The 2nd video shows how to put the cab pre-form on the nail with glue


This 3rd video shows how to remove the stone from the nail with a torch.  He's holding the nail with his hand so he can feel that the doesn't get hot enough to make the stone hot.  He heats between his hand and the stone...but nearer the stone.


Haven't tried to remove it yet, but so far the stone's solidly on the regular long nail.  I couldn't find anything 'cement coated' so I just got a regular big head nail.
Report Spam   Logged

Ciao,
Carol M
"Pursue Your Passions....."
"Imagine the Possibilities!"
"Mistakes are simply a form of practice!"
"People who never make mistakes.....probably never do anything!"

helens
Guest
« Reply #59 on: July 06, 2013, 09:50:35 am »

Interesting video:).  I really enjoyed doing the dopped cabs at the club, but these days, I'm getting bigger and bigger with the cabs... so don't need to as much.

Frank... one thing the vibe will not do is polish the insides ridges... tried that. hehehe. Imagine wrapping a cloth around the outside of a piece, and that's how much the tumbler will polish, any indents, ridges that you can't get to with a piece of cloth the tumbler action won't get to either, so you still end up hand polishing any carving grooves unfortunately. Of course, having the outside part polished first still saves time:)!
Report Spam   Logged
Carol M
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Gender: Female
Posts: 1028



View Profile
« Reply #60 on: August 25, 2013, 12:00:12 am »

Frank,
I'm just re-reading the notes on this topic as I've gotta get back to my little 'cab wantabees'. walker

I just realized I never thanked you  hide  for the 'fan-bloody-tastic', description of the steps you use with your Ameritool Flat Lap. bricks

I REALLY APPRECIATE IT!!! yippie

So.....now that it's been practically 2 months since you wrote it.....I'm glad to re-read it [and print it] so I can refer to it while I'm working, um, er, playing!!!

Thank you so much....again!! yes
Report Spam   Logged

Ciao,
Carol M
"Pursue Your Passions....."
"Imagine the Possibilities!"
"Mistakes are simply a form of practice!"
"People who never make mistakes.....probably never do anything!"

Pages: 1 2 3 ... 5 [All]   Go Up
  Print  
 
Jump to:  

Powered by EzPortal
Bookmark this site! | Upgrade This Forum
SMF For Free - Create your own Forum | Buy traffic for your forum/website

Powered by SMF | SMF © 2016, Simple Machines