Slow Opal

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skywalker753
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Re: Slow Opal

Postby skywalker753 » Tue Sep 14, 2021 5:04 pm

Well, I can say that there IS some color in that piece. After initial rough carbonizing, there's blue, purple, and a teal green visible. Its just not too great of a piece and I'm not sure if I'll continue with shaping final carbonizing and polishing. The color is visible, covers most of the piece, its just not any better than average. I left it fairly rough, same shape, including some original carbonization on the surface and even saw marks because I can see all I need to right now. I might continue on it, might move on not sure yet.
If I can post a couple pics I will. I took them, have em, the sending mechanism doesn't work. Either through email or messeging. Its happened before, had to shut everything down completely, full reboot on computer and smartphone, shut of modem, do a reboot of that, and shut off and reboot the wi-fi. Well, I'm saying it like I already did it, but I'll do it right after this posts. If THAT don't work, I'll call my all things electronic expert family member to fix it. He has done so in about 10 seconds in the past...lol...we'll see. :)

skywalker753
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Re: Slow Opal

Postby skywalker753 » Wed Sep 15, 2021 12:36 pm

Well, such as it is...lol.....I think I've got a pic to send, transmit, insert, and be viewable again.
Sorry its not too good. If you page up or back to the original white matrix, the difference is night and day. If you do that just come back here to the three smiley faces and keep reading... :) :) :) The piece was completely black coming out of the carbonizer, and I just rubbed the face a bit to see whats what there. OK. Its fairly straight on to the camera, and like I mentioned above its still got all sorts of the initial carbonization all over it and its very rough, in its original to me shape. I think the pic here fairly shows what it is, checked in preview, more violet purple and a little teal. I STILL don't know if there's enough color and interest to put the effort to make a piece. Different story if I was using a machine of any kind...lol...be done in 15 minutes probably. But, I can say carbonization DOES make color visible in untreated matrix, and a second carbonization, in my mind would be mandatory. It could get better. :oops: And, I'm pretty sure just about anybody could do this with raw matrix. Probably would want to do a first piece with higher quality matrix, probably isn't a great idea to do a first piece with higher quality matrix opal...lol...too much stuff can go bad imho.
Here's the pic:
Attachments
Rawmatrix.jpg

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PinkDiamond
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Re: Slow Opal

Postby PinkDiamond » Wed Sep 15, 2021 4:22 pm

Wow, it really did bring out colors in it that I couldn't see before, like the purple and the teal. It occurred to me to ask, even though you've got your own maple trees and an inexhaustible supply of maple syrup, have you ever tried molasses? It's so much darker I wondered if it could do it too, so I thought I'd ask. :)
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skywalker753
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Re: Slow Opal

Postby skywalker753 » Wed Sep 15, 2021 4:41 pm

Yeah, will try molasses at some point here in the future. I just don't know if it would or will have any different or differing effect. I'll find out for sure, just not sure when. Its on the list!
My THOUGHTS regarding that are that its color alone wouldn't have an effect. I'll have to dilute it some first so that its about half molasses sugar and half water. I have a electronic refractometer and a hydrometer for that. It will naturally be somewhat lighter in color to start than will straight molasses.
I THINK the sugar that seeps into the matrix pores will be the same, so may carbonize the same. The IMPURITIES in molasses that make it dark may seep into the matrix at a differing rate, and in fact may carbonize at a different temperature. So, could be exactly the same, may be different. Not sure when I will do it but in the next month or so?
If somebody has already done that, can you post? I'd like to read about it too.

skywalker753
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Re: Slow Opal

Postby skywalker753 » Wed Sep 15, 2021 4:52 pm

I'll probably do honey too, just to see how it does as well, since we have that here. Might as well do the differing sugars in solutions thing at the same time. Won't take but 5 minutes more effort, and I'll use similar lower grade pieces in each solution when I do do it.

skywalker753
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Re: Slow Opal

Postby skywalker753 » Thu Sep 16, 2021 12:59 pm

I am going to make two pieces from that previously untreated matrix. Grind them, sand them, shape, them. Carbonize again. then final sand and polish. I'll take some pics, and post, probably won't be top quality, might be ok. I say that because I know everyone likes the really gorgeous opals, and me too. Sometimes, as you well know, it doesn't turn out that way....lol... :) BUT, the point of the exercise has already been successful in that I didn't know if a clean white piece of untreated matrix where color was nearly not visible, after treatment, color clearly IS visible, even rough and uncut. I just figure might as well make something out of the piece, already put the time in it. WILL take a few days tho.

skywalker753
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Re: Slow Opal

Postby skywalker753 » Thu Sep 16, 2021 1:06 pm

And, just as a piece to show a pic, here's a 7.83 carat Andamooka Matrix Opal. Dark body tone, good orange color and flash on movement, shows great outdoors. Even tho I have seen that phenomenon many times now, where it looks pretty good indoors under light, but looks like "wow" outdoors in regular sunshine, it still surprises me and makes me smile. Whats that term again? Need another cup of coffee I guess....lol... Oh, this one was taken inside under desk light.
Here's the pic:
Attachments
NewMatrix.jpg

skywalker753
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Joined: Sun May 16, 2021 2:52 pm

Re: Slow Opal

Postby skywalker753 » Thu Sep 16, 2021 8:05 pm

If everything goes right, this will be two roughly equal sized teardrop shaped pieces. Covered and marked it this time before slicing and rough shaping just because I didn't want to be distracted with "oooh I could save THAT mm of color" if I did this or that. Its just a waterproof address label that I drew on. Next after that will be a thorough carbonizing, again.
This is what I'm looking at when starting slicing and then rough grinding:
Attachments
TwoTearDrops.jpg

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PinkDiamond
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Re: Slow Opal

Postby PinkDiamond » Thu Sep 16, 2021 8:19 pm

Good idea, drawing the shapes you want on the label makes where you want to cut and shape easy to see. :idea:
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SwordfishMining
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Re: Slow Opal

Postby SwordfishMining » Sun Sep 19, 2021 12:47 am

So ya got me finally. Actually its raining outside after a dust storm so i took some time & shrunk some files. This is the one chunk i was slicing up out of the parcel i got from Virge Meyer I think on EBAY way back when... It was on my table at shows with the odd rough i don't mine at 1$ a gram.
20210918_160104a.jpg
as cut

20210918_160131a.jpg
another way

You can see a definite layering to how it absorbs carbon. I used brown sugar super saturated & baked it afterwards. The flat one weighs in at 25 gms.
20210918_160156a.jpg
the layers

20210918_160257a.jpg
the back sides

I had to grind it off some to see what was under it pattern wise. Blues are broadflash & red side are pin fire approx 1/2 or less the size of the blue greens. It seems a grainier than glassier surface
20210918_160235a.jpg
the layers of penetrability

20210918_160607a.jpg
The preferred corner I guess.

Not sure how i am going to approach it next with the saw. Id like to go big to keep the pattern on the cross cut one, The one with the divot in the red Im going to go & make two tear drops like you are.
Maybe try to get a stone on the dark layer looking both ways. I hate wasting color. We'll see what it looks like preshaped one of these days. Not promising to do it by hand. Its not like that black is going to seep under the entire color layer instead of around it on the surface.


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