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Lapidary / Gemstone Community Forum
January 16, 2019, 05:14:29 pm
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Painted lady opal

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Author Topic: Painted lady opal  (Read 59 times)
mick B
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« on: December 28, 2018, 04:20:21 pm »

I recently polished this opal for a friend, its from South Australia, the Andamooka area I think, it is a very thin seam no thicker than 3mm maximum, very fractured, its on a sandstone backing.


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Taogem
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« Reply #1 on: December 28, 2018, 08:59:03 pm »

That is a lot thicker than 3 mm...

Such a shame it is so fractured.

Can something like this be used in some way ?

 
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mick B
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« Reply #2 on: December 28, 2018, 10:12:42 pm »

Hi George, the entire stone is around 1 inch thick but the crystal opal thickness sitting on the sandstone backing is around 1/8 thick, the backing is only sandstone, I have cut small stones from these in the past but now polish these as is, I think it looks better as a polished specimen, the eyes in this little owl we made were from painted lady, they look like a layer of opal has been painted onto a backing.


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cabster
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« Reply #3 on: December 28, 2018, 10:41:22 pm »

Very interesting. And the owl is wonderful!
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« Reply #4 on: December 29, 2018, 02:28:51 am »

I do not know much about opal but very beautiful!
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Taogem
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« Reply #5 on: December 29, 2018, 05:17:20 pm »

I found a Summer 1991 issue of Gems and Geology today at our club.

There are a couple of different articles.. One talks bout traditional sugar treatment of Andamooka matrix type opal. 

But after reading another article about filling imperfections within things like emeralds, aquamarine, quartz, tourmaline, and others, I think it may be worth a try to fill the fractures in your seam opal with some Opticon.  The only downsides I can find are related to torch type repairs or friction generated heating of metal prongs that can both result in a number of problems with the Opticon.

Just a thought, but if it were mine, I would probably give a stabilizing process with opticon a whirl..
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