Rare yellow phantom quartz...Ohhhhh
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Author:  Jason Barrett [ Thu Dec 24, 2015 5:30 pm ]
Post subject:  Rare yellow phantom quartz...Ohhhhh

I was able to find 3 specimens in our house that have never been photographed, which have the rare, yellow included phantoms with clear overgrowth. For every 100 amethyst found at Diamond Hill Mine, of good quality and color, you will only find one or two of this type, and usually they are in small vugs and to hard to get out in one piece.
Once in a blue moon, you will stumble upon a larger cavity or vein, that had the right soup of material, and was able to pop out a nice yellow phantom of some note. The iron oxide deposit has been trapped underneath a layer of overgrowth and/or clear overgrowth. The best specimens of this type, also come with a thin layer of microcrystalline quartz, which give it a nice twinkle and flash akin to melee's.
In my photos, to get some of the specific shots showing the phantoms, microcrystalline quartz, and the odd habits, I had to use a 6200K ott and an LED flashlight. Because of this the color is somewhat washed out and lacks the vibrancy it shows in person.
I have taken photos similar to these before, but it was from a different specimen that I sold ....a long time ago...for way to little...sigh.

This top picture shows an inclusion covered by micro quartz. Most likely it's a calcite, siderite, or pyrite crystal.
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Author:  Jason Barrett [ Thu Dec 24, 2015 5:31 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Rare yellow phantom quartz...Ohhhhh


Take note of the odd star shaped design on the crystal. The microcrystalline quartz is perched on the upper half of the crystal tip. A later hydrothermal event seems to have deposited another layer of quartz trying to snuff and cover the twinkly micro crystals :cry:
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This is an odd crystal perched among it's brethren.... it's hard to tell in the photo but it has an odd symmetry with 4(most likely 3 though) different quartz formation events, that gave it a weird acorn-like shape and an odd color scheme
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Author:  Jason Barrett [ Thu Dec 24, 2015 5:41 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Rare yellow phantom quartz...Ohhhhh


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Author:  Jason Barrett [ Fri Dec 25, 2015 1:39 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Rare yellow phantom quartz...Ohhhhh

This specimen I stumbled across earlier, right after taking and posting pics of the other three yellow phantom specimens I had found laying around, was found in the high grass next to the Koi pond.
It's a perfect example of the typical vug these odd yellow specimens typically come from.......
Small, and usually surrounded by a large block of massive quartz, the yellow phantom material, with the twinkle of a layer of microcrystalline quartz, is a classic example of the type of cavity that I have seen the majority of these types come from.
When we come across the "typical" amethyst or "typical" skeletal veins, they tend to be more platy and thin. Easy to break loose and work with. This stuff though.....ouch.
This specimen weighs about 30 pounds. It has a partial vug just chock a block full of nice bright yellow phantom quartz(bright in normal daylight not under my fluorescent as seen in pics)
What is different about this specimen, compared to the ones I posted earlier, is the odd inclusions that are readily visible to the naked eye. They don't look like anything that would be easily identifiable. No shape or color that tells me what it may be. I grabbed my Belomo and flashlight, then proceeded out into the garage to hunker down and see what I could learn from this odd beast(yea, it's huge, awkward, and heavy.... never mind that it doesn't stand up easily)
There is a whole weird world of strange things going on with this crystal cluster. I ended up getting lost in the wonderful world of the micro realm. Amazing what one can see when the perspective has changed.
What I can tell is........some of the inclusions are on the interiors of the crystals...right next to the solid inner core of the yellow phantom.
Some of the inclusions are subsurface and can poke outside the euhedral face.
Lastly, you have many that perch only on the outer layer(exterior) .
The ones perched on the exterior are almost always covered in a small layer of microcrystalline quartz, which make visual ID touchy at best. Some of the smaller ones that I was able to loupe, looked to be the often found dogtooth calcite crystal perimorphs that we come across from time to time. The inclusions that are actually included in the crystals seem to have no shape or system I could place them into. I seem to see a reddish/magenta like color to some of them. We have seen lots of pyrite and siderite inclusions from this deposit...and their pseudomorphs. Fluorite, apatite, coecaxinite, epidote, garnet, and other minerals have been found at this location, either attached or included in quartz.
My thinking is..... the majority of the exterior "inclusions"(yes a double negative, right?)
are all dog tooth calcite crystals that have been covered with a thick layer of microcrystalline quartz, thus giving it a look and shape different than that of calcite. Some of them have certain attributes that allow me to visually compare them to what I already know to happen when we dig and find the larger dog tooths on quartz.
We have seen this before on numerous occasions when digging. As for the objects on the inside of the clear quartz overgrowth, they seem to have the look of plain old detritus(dirt) that happened to get trapped when the next hydrothermal event took place.

This leads me to believe that a period a stability occurred that allowed dirt and particles to settle onto the surface of the newly layered quartz crystal....or....the period of stability was in fact longer lasting and that in turn, allowed the formation of calcite to occur. Either way, we know for a fact that multiple periods of silica deposition happened.
Why are these type of crystals, on average, mostly found in a specific type of pocket/vug? Why did none of the larger vein systems produce this stuff on a bigger scale?
Do you think the fact that they are usually found in smaller vugs associated with large masses of milky quartz has anything to do with it? Maybe these smaller pockets filled up their opening with to much silica and ended up pinching themselves off from the rest of the plumbing network. Free to do as they please, in their self-contained miarolitic cavity, the crystals did what their environment allowed them to do. Thoughts?

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Author:  Jason Barrett [ Fri Dec 25, 2015 1:39 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Rare yellow phantom quartz...Ohhhhh


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Author:  Jason Barrett [ Fri Dec 25, 2015 1:42 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Rare yellow phantom quartz...Ohhhhh


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Check out this last picture. Seems to be a bunch of crap going on here....weird for sure
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Author:  cascaillou [ Mon Jan 18, 2016 3:33 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Rare yellow phantom quartz...Ohhhhh

I like those yellow phantoms!

Author:  Barbra Voltaire, FGG [ Tue Jan 19, 2016 12:09 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Rare yellow phantom quartz...Ohhhhh

I like these pics!

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