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Why is this opal cut wrong? Opal cutting mistakes!

There are a lot of ways to cut an opal, but why is this opal cut wrong?

Today I have an opal rub, which is a piece of rough that someone has begun cutting. Sometimes I’ll get my hands on an opal that someone has already had a crack at, but for whatever reason, they’ve decided not to finish the stone.

I got this rub from a miner that had a go at cutting but I believe they’ve done it the wrong way. Did this cutter make a mistake? Can I fix it?

In today’s video, we’ll work on this stone together and answer some common opal cutting questions.

  • Why do cutters keep potch on one side?
  • How do I choose which side of my opal to face?
  • What do I do if there’s a sand spot inside my opal?

After assessing the stone, I think there’s better color on the other side. It’s a risk, but I’m keen to give it a go.

The thrilling and terrifying thing about the lapidary life is that there are only a few moves you can make on an opal cut wrong before it’s wasted. There’s the potential to gain a lot by taking the stone further, but there’s also the potential to lose a lot, too.

A case of the grass is always greener? There’s only one way to find out!

Are you too eager to wait until the end? Here’s the final opal; a gorgeous 7.44-carat black crystal opal. You can see flagstone, chaff, floral, and broad flash pattern in this beauty with that 3D color-on-color that we love!