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Lapidary / Gemstone Community Forum
March 21, 2019, 02:19:22 am
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Basenite For Backing

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Author Topic: Basenite For Backing  (Read 56 times)
Taogem
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« on: October 11, 2018, 10:54:55 pm »

Five pounds coming from Phillip, Rare Rocks and Gems

For those not familiar, basenite is a pure basalt with no pitting/crystal pockets, crystal inclusions or voids.  It is extremely stable with no spidery fractures or fusers. It can be cut with a true accurate slab saw to 1.5mm thin and still be strong. 

It's used mainly as a black backing for clear agate slabs/cabs that have inclusions such as plumes and Sagenite needles.  Putting a black Basenite backing to make the inclusions more intense and makes a tremendous difference in the over all look of the cabochon. 

Other uses for Basenite can be for supporting thin opal doublets/triplets, thin slabs, flat cabs, knapping or as a support base for unstable or brittle rocks. Basenite has a gloss finish that easily match's a glossy finished cabochon.  Also, cabs cut from treasured thin slab material can be backed to increase the overall use and size of desired cabs.

This particular batch of Basenite is from a special area of the Owyhee desert.



Here are some examples from Phillips site showing what a tremendous difference the backing can make.



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bobby1
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« Reply #1 on: October 12, 2018, 05:31:55 pm »

I use basanite for all the same uses that you list. A few years ago our club - the Mother Lode Mineral Society in Modesto, CA - had a large rock collection donated to us. It had a surprisingly large amount of basanite including pieces up to 100lbs. I'm not sure of the exact source of the material though it probably is from Oregon, Idaho or such.
It is jet black, no pits or other inclusions, very durable in thin sections and takes a super polish. In some of the projects that I do for my monthly Rock & Gem Magazine "Bench Tips" articles, I feature the use of the material.
Bob
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bobby1
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« Reply #2 on: October 12, 2018, 05:39:40 pm »

This piece was my latest submission. It is a slab of Graveyard Plume with a vug backed by basanite.
Bob
 
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« Reply #3 on: October 12, 2018, 05:40:57 pm »

For some reason, my attachment didn't post.
Bob

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Taogem
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« Reply #4 on: October 12, 2018, 08:12:27 pm »

Really nice use of the backing with that vug Bobby..

Thank you for sharing !
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ileney
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« Reply #5 on: October 15, 2018, 06:04:48 am »

Very nice!
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