Posted on

Polishing an antique opal ring: Before and after

Polishing an antique opal ring

Polishing an antique opal ring without removing the opal from its setting can be done. Justin shows you how to resurrect your opal and make it shine again. Polishing an opal in its setting is a simple but precise process. It requires focus to ensure you polish only the opal and not the setting. The process works best with bezel set opals that have a bit of a dome on them. Claw set jewelry does pose more of a risk because if the claws are higher than the stone you can’t actually get to the the opal without polishing the claws. This can weaken them and may even lead to your…

Read More
Posted on

Opal cutting using diamond Nova wheels

opal cutting using diamond nova wheels

This is a new video to replace a really old one on opal cutting using diamond Nova wheels. Many people ask about the difference between cutting opal with sand paper and using diamond impregnated soft wheels. So why use diamond Nova wheels? In the old days we used pumice on felt but it was messy and cumbersome. The Nova process is a wet process which, because the wheel is soft, is designed specifically for making cabochons. Dopping your rub That sounds a bit rude doesn’t it?! You know the basic drill. We attach the opal to the dop stick using wax. See this video for more on this subject. TIP: Make…

Read More
Posted on

Dopping Opal Secrets

Dopping Opal

Many people have been showing me their opal cutting skills while the opal is still on the dop stick. I have found a very common occurrence in that there is usually way too much wax on the stick.  This excess of wax means that it is almost impossible to polish the edges of the opal. I have created a diagram to help get it right as I see the middle picture much too often. Dopping opal can be an art. A good polish on an opal goes right down the sides to make a good setting edge. This can be difficult with the wax covering the sides of the gem. You will always need…

Read More