We put the call out on which nobby opal you wanted to see Justin cut and boy did you all respond beautifully and enthusiastically!
To refresh your memory, this was the breakdown from Justin about each rub/nobby.
Number 1 is a nice red rub that has previously been worked on the wheel.
It has a really good chance to cut a top gem with red-blue — just have to get past the sand.
Number 2 is a typical rough nobby with nice rounded edges.
I may slice this one down the middle to face 2 stones — it should face better than it looks.
Number 3 is not a perfect nobby but from experience, these types can be unpredictable and could cut amazingly or fail miserably.
Number 4 has been rubbed the most however, I don’t believe it has been rubbed enough.
This one poses the most significant risk out of them all.
It may rub clean to be a top gem or the potch may not come out.
However, it has the potential to cut $10,000 +
Number 5 is a broken piece of a nobby that has a thick color bar and should cut a nice high-domed gem.
Number 3 and number 4 opals were neck and neck for a while but in the end, number 4 prevailed!
So off to the cutting machine we go and start working on this risky opal rub.
Number 4 Nobby Opal
This particular nobby/rub poses the most risk out of the 5.
The color bar is flat with inclusions and it doesn’t look like it will cut particularly well.
I’ll begin by taking the edges off and the potch out of the top.
Hopefully, we will end up with a lovely gem of green/orange and possibly red.
Working it on the wheel I can see the color is wedging under the potch, which is a great sign!
However, the color bar is thin and I can’t take too much more of that color off the top.
It’s time to take its top off as that color looks amazing!
I’m Going In!
There is some gorgeous color mixed in and around the inclusions, so we need to take a different approach.
Off to the slicer, we go, cutting it almost straight down the middle!
Thank goodness we did as my instincts paid off.
You’ll be able to see there was no more color underneath, very lucky!
Everything is coming up Milhouse!
Two nice gemstones to shape and polish, working out most of the residue potch.
We finished with a lovely 3.88ct and 1.79ct black opal showing moss and feather patterns.
Feather pattern is not seen that often, the best way to describe it is like a softer version of chaff.