Novembr 16-18—COLUMBIA, SOUTH CAROLINA: Annual show; The Columbia, SC Gem and Mineral Society; Fri. 10-6, Sat. 10-6, Sun. 12-5
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 Post subject: Imperial rhodonite chain
PostPosted: Thu Sep 06, 2018 4:44 am 
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Its been quite a while between post on this forum, my latest carving is a small chain carved from a single piece of Australian imperial rhodonite from my region of Tamworth NSW Australia, its from a mined out deposit, regarded as amongst the best massive rhodonite found world wide, some may ask why I used this gem and not jade, well chains have been carved in jade before, I do not think one has been carved before in rhodonite, more as a display piece, I would like to attach some type of lace or chain so it can be worn a a necklace, opinions would be great.
michael B


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 Post subject: Re: Imperial rhodonite chain
PostPosted: Thu Sep 06, 2018 9:21 am 
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My opinion is that it is unique, and gorgeous. Well done. thanks for posting.


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 Post subject: Re: Imperial rhodonite chain
PostPosted: Thu Sep 06, 2018 11:42 am 
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Exceptional work on very nice material.


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 Post subject: Re: Imperial rhodonite chain
PostPosted: Thu Sep 06, 2018 12:01 pm 
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I want to be chained in this !


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 Post subject: Re: Imperial rhodonite chain
PostPosted: Thu Sep 06, 2018 3:59 pm 
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Stunning.
would love to see some of the rough material. :D


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 Post subject: Re: Imperial rhodonite chain
PostPosted: Thu Sep 06, 2018 6:04 pm 
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Stunning is the word, that is beautiful.
I think finishing out the chain with similar links in gold would look nice.

Jim


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 Post subject: Re: Imperial rhodonite chain
PostPosted: Thu Sep 06, 2018 9:27 pm 
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Correct me if I am wrong, michael B, but wouldn't the cleavage of rhodonite make it quite a "delicate flower" when it comes to being incorporated into a piece of jewelry?

I can imagine that the links clinking together, let alone clinking on metal links if they were added, would eventually lead to a heartbreaking link break.

If it were mine, I might contact the Smithsonian and see if they might be interested in adding it to their collection.


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 Post subject: Re: Imperial rhodonite chain
PostPosted: Thu Sep 06, 2018 10:06 pm 
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These are massive material, so there aren't any crystals big enough for the cleavages to line up. It isn't the most durable material but it has decent toughness.

I would be hesitant to deal with the smithsonian--they have a history of taking things in for analysis and never giving them back. They have a huge research collection and most won't see the light of day.


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 Post subject: Re: Imperial rhodonite chain
PostPosted: Fri Sep 07, 2018 3:00 am 
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Thanks for the great comments, I carved this more to be shown than to be worn, I live in a region that has more rhodonite than most areas world wide, and yes rhodonite can be brittle but this material is very fine grain and tough, not like some sugary crystalline material in my region, I have helped mine the stone, and have seen thousands of tons.
Yes if the links were to hit together they could break but this will never happen as it will never be abused like this, a picture back lit from the same rough.


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 Post subject: Re: Imperial rhodonite chain
PostPosted: Fri Sep 07, 2018 1:52 pm 
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Beautiful material and workmanship.

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 Post subject: Re: Imperial rhodonite chain
PostPosted: Fri Sep 07, 2018 2:56 pm 
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I am truly awestruck by your work michael B.


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 Post subject: Re: Imperial rhodonite chain
PostPosted: Fri Sep 07, 2018 3:30 pm 
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Thanks for the great feedback, i started carving back in 2007, has become very addictive, I self collect most of my rough, but also purchase some high quality rough mostly Australian, Lightning ridge opal to carve, and I carve nephrite jade from my region, some more examples of my work, or addiction.


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 Post subject: Re: Imperial rhodonite chain
PostPosted: Fri Sep 07, 2018 3:48 pm 
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Did you take classes from someone, or just sorted this out on your own? =D> =D> =D>


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 Post subject: Re: Imperial rhodonite chain
PostPosted: Sat Sep 08, 2018 6:46 am 
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Michael,

I've noticed a lot of beautiful pieces of work posted on this forum. I don't post comments very often but your carvings got my attention. Very nice work indeed! =D> I can't tell the actual size of the links but I believe it would be relatively simple to make some additional similar graduated links in gold-pretty expensive or silver- much less costly.

David T


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 Post subject: Re: Imperial rhodonite chain
PostPosted: Sat Sep 08, 2018 4:36 pm 
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Thanks Barbra & David, back in 2007 I joined our local lapidary club to learn the basics of stone cutting and polishing, there were no stone carvers there, I basically taught myself for the next few years to carve, but then one NZ jade carver did give me some help online, I have a background in metal engineering, still to this day make my living from this, I was self employed up until 2015 making medical stainless products.
Some more pictures, the white opal is 95% potch, my mobius cut arrow head had a hole in the middle so I used it for the middle of the mobius shape, always try to keep as much color as I can.


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