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31  Lapidary Shop / Moderator, Catmandewe ( Tony ) / Discs, Wheels, Belts, Pads, and Polishing / Re: Need new 8 x 3 diamond belts Advise Please .... on: September 11, 2015, 07:47:56 am
I have been using Mo Hans belts for over a year now. I am happy with them. I have 2 sets, 6" and 8".  Shipping from China was fast, about a week or so. I am not keeping track of how many cabs come off the 6" and 8" belts but the total number is up around 400 now and still going strong. Good belts, Great communication and Fast shipping. Best tools I have gotten out of China.
32  Lapidary Shop / Moderator, Catmandewe ( Tony ) / Miscellaneous Shop Talk / Re: Best equipment for polishing faced specimens? on: September 07, 2015, 08:29:00 am
I have had great results with Bobby1's dry sanding/polishing method. It works best with 8" expando but also works with 6". A link:
  http://gemstone.smfforfree4.com/index.php/topic,2190.0.html
33  Stone Talk / Moderator, Hummingbirdstones ( Robin ) / Rock Hounding Trips, Tips, and Pics / Re: Suggestions for Rock Hounding quest from Salt Lake to Spencer Idaho on: August 29, 2015, 05:53:09 am
There are some cool rocks around Livingston but the good Montana Agates are quite a ways east. I generally hunt between Forsyth and Glendive. It is an all day trip from western Montana out to the Agate country. I try to get out there once a year. Good Luck.
34  Stone Talk / Moderator, Hummingbirdstones ( Robin ) / Share Our Finished Cabochons and General Cabbing Questions / Tutorials / Re: Woodward Ranch Black Plume on: August 22, 2015, 11:02:30 pm
Great Agate!
35  Creative Stone Works / Moderator, Michael Hoover / Knife Handles Artwork / Tutorials / Re: anyone made a entire knife from scratch? on: August 18, 2015, 10:31:05 am
Howdy..........Pretty ambitious undertaking. I made a hunting knife a few years back. I cut the blade from an old circular saw blade and the handle from bloodstone. No pommel or guard pretty basic and functional.  Recently I acquired a piece of Damascus steel, forged by a neighbor and have been acquiring the materials to make a much nicer  knife. Silver pommel, guard and rivets. I am still looking for a colorful local stone (probably Rhyolite) for the handle. I use a bench grinder and angle grinder to cut and shape the blade. Then work it up with silicon carbide belts on the expando. Good luck.......... Bob
36  Stone Talk / Moderator, Hummingbirdstones ( Robin ) / Identification Inquiries / Re: Mystery Chunk O' Rock on: August 12, 2015, 10:26:00 pm
The opal also resembles ice Cream Opal from Spencer Idaho.
37  Stone Talk / Moderator, Hummingbirdstones ( Robin ) / Share Our Finished Cabochons and General Cabbing Questions / Tutorials / Re: Some Montanas on: July 31, 2015, 11:27:06 pm
Nice.......Gotta love those Montanas  :)
38  Custom Designed Jewelry / Members Personal Jewelry Design Experiences / Tutorials / Guides / Re: Jewelry for a local Art Show on: July 24, 2015, 10:41:07 am
Nice job Brian. I always have a little concern hanging my pendants. I like to purchase nicer sterling chains but the cost adds up. I make sterling hook and clasp ends for the leather cord like you have pictured. If I buy the ends it seems the price is high enough that I might as well buy pre-made cords with the clasps on or even sterling chain. I ended up buying a bunch of inexpensive pre-made leather cords with adjustable chain ends to basically give away with the pendants. I set up a few with the nicer chains and leather cords and sell pendants, chains and cords separately. Its funny how many people like the free cord idea. Also a lot of people have chains at home and just want the pendant. As a side note: I just got an order for 20 pendants from a gift store. The buyer wanted to keep the price down and was perfectly happy with the cheaper bulk neck cords. I could not have made the order using the higher quality chains and cords. Good luck at the show...............Bob


39  Lapidary Shop / Moderator, Catmandewe ( Tony ) / Miscellaneous Shop Talk / Re: Help me get what I need and not have to replace down the road for cabbing please on: July 21, 2015, 11:16:32 am
If it were me..............starting out but knowing what I know.
10"-14" slab saw
6" trim saw
8" grinding, sanding, polishing unit with at least one end lap. 2 hard wheels, 2 expandos and leather polish pad.

Knowing that I will want/need more down the road is a given........ hide
40  Stone Talk / Moderator, Hummingbirdstones ( Robin ) / Rough on the bench and slabs off the saw (general minerals board) / Re: Montana Agate on: July 21, 2015, 10:31:54 am
Don..........You are exactly right. I have a few of these around. A couple of which are very thin but have great dendrites. Now I will plot on capping them.  Thanks! I didn't think of that. Some have such thin layers that they are impossible to dome. You end up with concentric rings where it undercuts at each layer. Also hard to saw as they come out of the river rather pancake-like. I bought a 60 grit diamond belt specifically to work this one down. It is pretty large...weighs a couple pounds. Sometimes you get one layer of dendrites uncovered and there is another just visible below. I wish I had thought to make a doublet before I screwed up the couple I did by trying to dome. Thanks for your input.
41  Stone Talk / Moderator, Hummingbirdstones ( Robin ) / Rough on the bench and slabs off the saw (general minerals board) / Re: Montana Agate on: July 20, 2015, 10:24:36 pm
Thanks.........I will get a better picture when I get some new batteries for the old Nikon. It was a tossup whether I polished it or not. It lost character but gained a lot of dendrites. About half of the face was showing all pitted with a red cast.
I have a real battle going with photobucket but I guess I will continue to post photos there as I understand their links. Unlike Flickr.
42  Stone Talk / Moderator, Hummingbirdstones ( Robin ) / Rough on the bench and slabs off the saw (general minerals board) / Re: Montana Agate on: July 19, 2015, 12:17:52 am
I looked at this one for 7 months before I decided to face polish it.  thinking13  Not going to be cabbing this one.

43  Stone Talk / Moderator, Hummingbirdstones ( Robin ) / Rough on the bench and slabs off the saw (general minerals board) / Montana Agate on: July 18, 2015, 12:44:03 pm
Finally got a Flickr account. Lets see if it works.
https://flic.kr/p/wb9J8g
Okay....Is there a way to post the photo instead of the link?
44  Stone Talk / Moderator, Hummingbirdstones ( Robin ) / Mineral Specimens / Re: ID help Metallics- Mohawkite and mystery stone??? on: July 12, 2015, 11:28:16 am
I am not sure but the first slab looks a lot like specular hematite. The yellow metal is interesting. Probably not gold but wouldn't it be neat if it was.
45  Custom Designed Jewelry / Metal Clay Jewelry Desiign / Re: Rustic silver leaf pendant with welo opal on: June 27, 2015, 02:04:16 pm
Mirkaba:   I am a believer in using basanite and other colored stones for backing.  If you are selling them I hope you tell your customers.  One thing I will caution about using electrical tape. IT gets bad with age. It can get gummy from heat and dries out when it gets really old.  My feelings are sticking with natural backings that will last a life time.

I am not making a doublet or triplet. I use Basanite all the time for that purpose. I cut a piece sometimes 2 and use it in place of leather,sawdust, plastic etc. like a cushion. I met a fellow from Lightning Ridge that used black marker on crystal Opal. I couldn,t do that.

Basanite is a very dense black Basalt usually used for backing on thin sliced opal when making doublets and triplets.
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