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Smashing gemstones with a mallet!

smashing gemstones

As a kid, I thought that diamonds were the hardest thing in the world. Having the typical tyrannical tendencies that young boys have, all I wanted to do was smash one. Now I’m an adult and quite frankly, not much has changed. Join me today as I live out one of 9-year-old Justin’s dreams of smashing gemstones and seeing what happens. I’m testing this theory on a few different kinds of gemstones to see how they hold up; opal, quartz, emerald, and diamond. Let’s have a crack! (pardon the pun) Opal First up off the bat is my personal favorite; the opal. As I ready my mallet I apologise to…

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Polishing 2.2kgs (5 pounds) of Andamooka opal

andamooka opal

My biggest challenge ever doesn’t seem to be getting any easier! This massive chunk of Andamooka opal is the opal that finally beat me. I have developed my skills in cutting opal over the last 30 years but I’ve never met an opal that’s challenged me like this one. Sometimes it’s not that we don’t have the skills or the knowledge but that we just don’t have the right equipment! The opals I’m used to cutting are, at maximum, the size of a Ferrero Rocher (and just as delicious, in my opinion) so the tools I use just can’t cope with this megalith-like Andamooka opal. So how will I tackle…

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The transformation of this half rough opal!

4.03 ct gem black opal

Millions of years ago, on the border of an ancient inland sea, a gem was born. This is the tale of the half rough opal… Join me today as I uncover a stunning gem from a half rubbed, half rough opal! I got this gem from a miner who had uncovered some of the color but hadn’t taken away all of the potch in this half rough opal yet. I can see there’s a thick bar of color running through with some beautiful green, blue, and yellow. There is potch in the face on one side and some sand inclusions that I hope to get out to make this stone…

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