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

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Author Topic: Pre-Form Layout Problem / Carol M's Brazilian Agate  (Read 1279 times)
Carol M
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« 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!!
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Carol M
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Carol M
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« 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
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Carol M
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« 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.
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Carol M
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« 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.
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Carol M
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Carol M
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« 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
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Carol M
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« 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.
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« 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.
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Carol M
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« 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.
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Carol M
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« 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.
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Carol M
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« 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.
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« 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.
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Carol M
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« 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??
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Carol M
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« Reply #27 on: June 27, 2013, 03:26:41 pm »

I purchased it new, dropped shipped from an eBay seller.
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Carol M
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« 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!!!
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Carol M
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sealdaddy
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« 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.)
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