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3541  Stone Talk / Moderator, Hummingbirdstones ( Robin ) / Share Our Finished Cabochons and General Cabbing Questions / Tutorials / Re: Gold Ore Cab on: January 07, 2009, 01:36:59 pm
You were probably able to break down the iron but you need the ultrasonic to remove it from the pits.
Bob
3542  Stone Talk / Moderator, Hummingbirdstones ( Robin ) / Rough on the bench and slabs off the saw (general minerals board) / Re: Rare Blue Obsidian on: January 07, 2009, 12:57:34 pm
Taogem,
I'll keep you in mind. I will also do a tutorial on cabbing and polishing Obsidian as well as doing one of these "eye" cabs........ after I get moved in and settled down a bit. I've got an awful lot of rocks and slabs to get out of storage and get sorted and placed into bins.
Bob
3543  Stone Talk / Moderator, Hummingbirdstones ( Robin ) / Share Our Finished Cabochons and General Cabbing Questions / Tutorials / Re: Gold Ore Cab on: January 07, 2009, 12:51:35 pm
Bob,
If you have one, I would recommend using a small ultrasonic cleaner with hot water, a small amount of liquid dish soap and some pure ammonia. I use my ultrasonic for many things such as removing Cerium Oxide from my dop sticks, removing Cerium Oxide or other polish from the cracks and crevices in finished cabs or tumbled rocks and to remove tripoli or rouge from jewelry pieces after I have buffed them. It also does a bang up job in cleaning jewelry. It has the ability to get into very small cracks and remove any loose material. I've tried high pressure water and brushing to clean these areas and it doesn't work well.
I wouldn't recommend an ionic cleaner because they don't have the power and cleaning ability of an ultrasonic cleaner. I've had mine for over 30 years so a good one will last many years of hard use. You should be able to get a 1 quart one for about $150.
I would use Opticon to stabilize it.
Bob
3544  Stone Talk / Moderator, Hummingbirdstones ( Robin ) / Rough on the bench and slabs off the saw (general minerals board) / Re: Rare Blue Obsidian on: January 07, 2009, 04:13:52 am
This material usually has a rough "sandy" outer surface with parallel lines showing the demarcation of each color. The material comes in irregularly shaped chunks from about hen's egg size up to the size of a 5 gallon bucket (rare). If you get a bright color and work it carefully you can get an eye effect.

Cuting almost parallel to the color bands will give you a rainbow effect.

Once I get my shop built (by mid February) I will have my slab saws up and running. I might be able to part with a slab or two for someone interested.
Bob
3545  Stone Talk / Moderator, Hummingbirdstones ( Robin ) / Rough on the bench and slabs off the saw (general minerals board) / Re: Rare Blue Obsidian on: January 06, 2009, 08:25:42 pm
Davis Creek is in far Northeastern California near a town called Alturas. It is noted for its Rainbow Obsidian though there are other types there. I've been collecting there for 35+ years and it is a lot of fun. I took my 11 year old grandson there last summer. Here is a few pictures of the area.
This is my grandson digging at the site.

This is one of a piece sticking out of the dirt.

This one shows the color in the piece after I took a small chip off to see the color.

This is a photo of one of the pieces that has been washed off.

This one is of the other side with the face polished.

Obsidian is one of my favorite materials to work and I have worked quite a lot of it.
Yes, green is a rather rare color for this material from this site.
Bob
3546  Stone Talk / Moderator, Hummingbirdstones ( Robin ) / Rough on the bench and slabs off the saw (general minerals board) / Re: New Slab on: January 06, 2009, 10:53:34 am
This is a photo of Amethyst Sage, also. It shows the Amethyst color and the black plumes that occur in this material.
Bob
 
3547  Stone Talk / Moderator, Hummingbirdstones ( Robin ) / Rough on the bench and slabs off the saw (general minerals board) / Re: Rare Blue Obsidian on: January 06, 2009, 10:27:33 am
Here is a photo of Green Obsidian from Davis Creek in Northern California that I collected many years ago.

Here is a cab that I cut from it.

This doesn't show any of the transparency like the examples of "Blue Obsidian"
Bob
3548  Stone Talk / Moderator, Hummingbirdstones ( Robin ) / Share Our Finished Cabochons and General Cabbing Questions / Tutorials / Re: Cabochon Entries for Jan 1 through the 15th on: January 05, 2009, 09:23:07 pm
I finished this one tonight. It is about 2" across.
Bob
3549  Lapidary Shop / Moderator, Catmandewe ( Tony ) / Miscellaneous Shop Talk / Re: Disaster on: January 05, 2009, 08:25:13 am
Most welding supply places will rebuild gas regulators. Whether they can do a Craftsman, I'm not sure. You can call them first to see.
Bob
3550  Custom Designed Jewelry / Members Personal Jewelry Design Experiences / Tutorials / Guides / Soldering Trick on: January 04, 2009, 11:13:55 pm
When you are soldering something (bezel strip, wire, decorative feature, etc.) to a flat piece it is often difficult to get the pieces up to temperature quickly (if at all) do your soldering activity. I turn my flame up real large and heat a spot the size of the piece to be soldered on the solderite pad or firebrick. I heat it quite a bit, enough for the pad or brick to glow bright red. Then I quickly turn the torch back down to a normal soldering flame and use the solder pick to quickly slide the pieces to be soldered over the "hot" spot on the pad. Then I continue my soldering process. This acts just like having another torch simultaneously  directed at the underside of the piece to be soldered.
Bob
3551  Lapidary Shop / Moderator, Catmandewe ( Tony ) / Slab Saws, Trim Saws, Blades & Lubricants For Both / General Operating / Re: Cutting oil on: January 03, 2009, 09:55:50 pm
I don't use the bricks because I want a longer cutting time between oil changes. I recycle the oil by filtering it through a doubled paper bag/bucket arrangement. I can usually recover about 85% of the oil for reuse.
Bob
3552  Lapidary Shop / Moderator, Catmandewe ( Tony ) / Miscellaneous Shop Talk / Re: Tumbler Question on: January 03, 2009, 09:40:55 pm
Just take some beer bottles (I'm assuming that you drink beer) or other colored bottles if you don't, and break them up (while wearing safety glasses). toss them into the tumbler with coarse grit for a few days. Inspect them as they progress and pull them out when you are happy with the shape and surface texture. You have just created some ancient sea or beach glass! I suspect that most of this stuff on the market is done this way.
Bob
3553  Custom Designed Jewelry / Members Personal Jewelry Design Experiences / Tutorials / Guides / Re: Creative Bezel Wire Trick on: January 03, 2009, 05:28:14 pm
Gary,
Unfortunately I'm not teaching any classes at the moment. I used to teach at the rockshop in the Bay Area at Mountain View. It closed a few months ago and concurrently I moved from the Bay Area to Valley Springs in July. I haven't located a suitable place to teach just yet. I've been rather busy getting settled into the new house and I'm currently having a rather large shop built. Hopefully it will be finished by the end of January. The good news is that it will have heat and air conditioning. My garage doesn't and I only have my cabbing unit set up in the garage. After that I'm going to actively seek a place to teach classes because I really enjoy it.
Bob
3554  Lapidary Shop / Moderator, Catmandewe ( Tony ) / Discs, Wheels, Belts, Pads, and Polishing / Re: Expandable drums on: January 03, 2009, 05:19:41 pm
I have generally found that most used Expando drums are rarely in good enough shape to use. I'm not sure if just lying around degrades the elasticity of the rubber or not. Rarely have I seen any used ones that I would put to further use. I've had drums that are 15 or more years old and still working well. The only time I've ever had to replace one is when my granddaughter was sanding a rounded rock and it slipped from her hand. It slammed onto the bottom of the tray, rolled up and around and generally made a freightening noise. It also dented the drum and made it out of round.
If you feel of the surface and it doesen't rebound quickly and firmly when you press on it, it should be replaced. Also, as already mentioned if the belt wanders at normal running speed, the rubber has lost its resiliency.
I have three drip fittings above my drum and I just move it to which ever part of the wheel that I want to use. The supply valve has a high capacity so I can get a large stream running if I want to. Rarely do I need that much water. I have never thrown away a belt because it is worn down. I really like them in this condition especially for really getting any miniflat spots out. I also do a lot of my sanding dry especially on larger flat surfaces. I don't sand on the rounded thin edges though. It will burn the stone. By the time that I finish my 400 sanding I can not see any scratches therefore I don't  use the 600 to remove any scratches.
Bob
3555  Lapidary Shop / Moderator, Catmandewe ( Tony ) / Discs, Wheels, Belts, Pads, and Polishing / Re: Diamond Disk on: January 03, 2009, 12:20:42 pm
The first wheel that I got from him lasted about 2 1/2 years. I got one from him about 4 months ago and it is going strong so far. It seemed to dull a little faster than what I remember the last one did. I do a lot of heavy grinding because of the size of cabs that I do. I start with 80 grit wheels which are rather aggressive to begin with.
Bob
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