Issue No. 316 - Friday, January 07, 2005
Moderated by: Thurmond Moore III
Committed to carrying on the fine works of
Hale Sweeny and Jerry Dewbre
Hi everyone,

I hope everyone had a great new year. Here
is todays list. Enjoy.

Index to Today's Digest

01  RE: Jim Perkins: Where are you showing at the February Tucson show ?
02  NEW: Cabbing Rough in Faceting material Types
03  RE: 2005 Tuscon Hob Nob
04  NEW: places to visit on the web
05  Ad: Synthetic Alexandrite the Real Deal
06: NEW: Tucson Show changes - 2005
07: Bio: Dennis Fenton
08: NEW: Large Vibrating Laps ?


Subject: Where are you showing
Date: Sat, 18 Dec 2004 04:58:08 -0500
To: lapidary@caprock-spur.com
From: Jim Perkins <jperkins@ohio.net>

Hi All,
I am not a gem dealer and therefore will not be showing anything at
Tucson. Sorry if I was unclear. I am waiting for samples still from
Mongolia and when they arrive I have some gem dealers who are friends.
They have asked me to let them know about the quality and so forth. I
will likely forward some samples to them along with the contact
information. They can then decide if it is economically practical to
obtain more of this material to sell at a profit. I am looking at
material which is available at a reasonable cost to hobbyists and I am
working on new designs which I feel will work well with these materials.
I have found that I can achieve what I feel is better than average
optical performance by thinking and working outside the boundaries of
traditional thinking. Therefore, I am exploring these new ideas. Once I
have recovered from my Christmas cutting I need to send the facet
machine back to the factory for a little maintenance. Then I have to get
busy on my competition stone. Otherwise I'll miss another year of fun!
This year competition stones are extraordinary in my opinion. In between
my work and other activities I'll be working on my new designs and test
cutting sample stones. I guess  you can see why I have no time to sell
gem rough ;-)
Happy Holidays,
Jim Perkins


Subject: Re: Those looking for good facet rough
Date: Fri, 10 Dec 2004 20:18:42 -0700
To: faceters@caprock-spur.com
From: "Todd" td_gunz@yahoo.com

Subject: Re: Those looking for good facet rough
Date: Sat, 18 Dec 2004 15:15:05 -0700
To: "LapidaryArtsDigest" <lapidary@caprock-spur.com>
From: "John McLaughlin" <jemstone@amug.org>

Many thanks Todd.  Some of the suppliers were ones I used to have bookmarked
but, due to spyware taking down my last hard drive, lost.  (Aside - it's
very easy to export your internet bookmarks to a floppy, cd or other
external source - I do it frequently now.)

While I don't have anything to contribute at this point, I do have a
request.  I primarily cut cabochons for use in bezel set jewelry that I
make.  I have a hard time finding good quality, good color rough.  I know
it's out there.  Rubelite that has too many inclusions for faceting, etc.
I'd welcome any suggestions on sources of good cab grade rough in bright
colored stones normally thought of as faceting materials.  Most other kinds
of stones I can easily get in Tucson or Quartzsite, but the below faceting
grade stones are surprisingly hard to find.

Happy New Year to all.

John McLaughlin
Glendale, Arizona


Hi John,

Unfortunately or Fortunately in this case much of what is listed on e-bay
as facet grade is actually what you need to fill the bill. The drawback
however is usually the variance in price but much of the "cheaper priced"
facet rough is perfectly good cabbing material even though it is frequently
misrepresented as facet grade by the seller. A few sellers do list as Facet /
Cab grade but it is Cab grade at best. I bet there are a bunch of faceters
on the list that could give up some of their" fish tank Gravel" for cabbing.



Subject: Tuscon 2005
Date: Sun, 19 Dec 2004 09:32:25 -0500 (Eastern Standard Time)
To: <faceters@caprock-spur.com>
From: "Dennis Demerly" <ddraw@comcast.net>

Hello Thurmond
Happy Holidays to everyone. Thanks for the information about the Hob Nob. I
now Know where it is at and the four of us cannot wait to get there. Two of
us will be in Tuscon from Jan thru March. If anyone has any information
about where the good dealers in facet rough will be, drop us a line at
ddraw@comcast.net or if you just want to visit, do the same. We are looking
forward to having a great time and meeting people in person not just thru
e-mail. We will also be visiting Quartzite, to see what is there. We heard
that this year, 2004, that someone was selling lab material very cheap. As
you all know, it is treasure hunt for very good faceting rough. We hope to
meet many of you in Tuscon.
We all have FAC-ETTE machines and enjoy cutting when we get the time.

See you in Tuscon.

Subject: Re: Used Lapidary Equipment
Date: Mon, 20 Dec 2004 09:08:03 -0700
To: "LapidaryArtsDigest" <lapidary@caprock-spur.com>
From: "Galarneau's Gems" <gggemswcr@cox.net>

  Last summer a friend of mine gave me and old 14 inch slab saw.  I looked
at it and knew that it would need a lot of work.  The blade was still mired
in oil and sludge that looked like it dated to the 1990's.  Someone had
cannibalized the drive mechanism for the vice and the screw feed was bent on
the end.  This saw is made out of 1/4 inch steel and is a real monster.  Two
wheels were missing on the legs.  When I went to pick up the saw it took
three of us to lift it into the back of the truck.
  Once home it set outside all summer because I could not move it by myself.
About a month ago I decided it was time to fix this saw.  The first problem
was wheels so I could move it.  I took off the old broken wheels and
cannibalized some wheels off my daughters old red wagon. This took about
three hours as I had to jack up the saw take off the old wheels, drill the
holes through 1/4 inch steel to mount the new wheels.
  Once mobile I wheeled the saw into my shop.  First I cleaned the saw.
This took about three more hours of scraping and two rolls of paper towels.
Then I could make an assessment of the rest of the saw.  Rails and vice
appeared workable, the arbor had very little play, the on/ off switch was
broken, all the wiring was frayed, the saw motor was a 1/2 horse power and
covered in grudge, the drive feed for the vice was missing. Where to start.
I decided on the wiring and motor for the arbor.  I cleaned the motor the
best I could without dismounting it, rewired the motor and installed a new
switch.  Cost about  $25 for all the parts. I put on a new drive belt,
installed new pulleys as the old ones where bent, and checked the arbor for
play.  I plugged the saw into a breaker bar, closed the lid and turned it
on.  It fired up and ran for about 10 minutes before it made a god awful
noise and tripped the main breaker in my shop. The motor once hot overloaded
and stopped.  Also the running loosened up the arbor and now the blade was
flapping in the wind. I disassembled the motor mount, found a way to tighten
the arbor shaft, and cleaned up the motor.  Reinstalled the motor and tried
again.  Another magnificent noise and a tripped breaker I decided a new
motor was needed.  $175 later and a new motor was mounted.  So far I was
into this free machine about $225 and 10 hours of labor.  Now the motor ran.
  How about the drive for the vice.  I built an adjustable  motor mount out
of steel. Had my friend weld it together and used a new 18 rpm motor that I
had in stock to drive the screw. My plan was to install this motor with a
small pulley and place a large pulley on the screw to slow it down to about
4 rpm's.   Everything looked great after about another 6 hours of work.  I
wired it up to the switch and fired it all up.  Guess what? The feed on this
saw was 180 degrees out from any saw I have ever used.  Yes, I now feed the
saw away from the vice. Real smooth move. My first instinct was to buy
another fractional horsepower low RPM motor with the reverse feed.  It does
exist, but the cost was $300. So I sat down behind my saw and dismounted
this feed and said there has to another way to mount this to reverse the
feed.  There was, but now my mounting bracket was all backwards. At this
point my frustration was building to why did I not just but a new saw if I
wanted one this much. After I had regained my composure I redrilled my very
nice mounting bracket, sawed part of the previous well designed steel, and
bolted it back together.  Now I had a feed that turned the direction I
needed. Installing the water based lubricant went easy, a stone was inserted
into the vice, a last minute inspect was conducted, the lid shut, and the
motors turned on. It made a beautiful whirr sound and proceeded to cut the
rock.  The first cut was beautiful, smooth and even.  But......  About half
way through the cut the new 3/4 horse drive motor lugged down.  On the
second cut about half way through the 3/4 horse motor over heated and
tripped its internal breaker.  My vice feed or my blade speed was wrong.  I
first thought my blade speed was too slow.  I had set it up to run a full
1:1 at 1725 RPMs. I changed the pulleys and belts to up the blade speed to
2500 RPMs.  Yes, now the saw cut, but the noise it made in the steel case
was unbearable. I decided this was not the way to go.  So I went out and
bought another motor that turned at 6 RPMs and kept my pulleys the same on
the drive so that it was now feeding the vise at approximately 1 RPM.  I
went back to my original 1:1 on the arbor speed.  Now it is running fine.
Let me see about 30 hours labor, five car trips to supply stores, and
approximately $350 out of my pocket I have a useable 14 inch slab saw that I
run in a water based lubricant.  Sometimes I feel I should just carry a
hammer and hit myself before I even think about these projects.  But a free
saw is difficult to pass up.

  Merry Christmas,

  Gerry Galarneau


Subject: Synthetic Alexandrite - True Color Changing Chrysoberyl - The Real Deal at a Great Price!
Date: Fri, 31 Dec 2004 09:35:49 -0500
To: "LapidaryArtsDigest" <lapidary@caprock-spur.com>
From: "All That Glitters" <atggems@netzero.net>


This material is a by-product of laser rod manufacturing.  We purchased a
large Pull and are in the process of trimming pieces.   We have sold  this
material to manufacturers outside the U.S. and it was always by the kilo.
We were asked by a number of small businesses and cutters to sell smaller
pieces, so this time,  we decided that we would break up a pull.

The color under incandescent light is reddish pink; under fluorescent
lights, it depends on how one orients the axes.  Using a dichroscope, one
can see purple, teal, blue, green, orange and yellow.  We have cut a few
pieces here in the US from a previous pull and it goes from reddish pink to
purple with teal - see photo above.   Even cut stones at 15mm in diameter,
the color is strong without being overly saturated!  Note that this material
is lighter than other Alexandrite out there and it allows one to cut very
large stones without the being too dark.  It contains less Cr and therefore,
has less saturation.  Parcels typically consist of a range of different
sized pieces. This is nice material for cutting for your personal use or for
resale.   The feedback that we have gotten so far has been positive.
=====>>>  NOTE - Though the price on this material is about 50% off of what
you would expect to pay, This IS SYNTHETIC ALEXANDRITE, NOT Synthetic
Corundum (Sapphire).  You can tell this from the pleochroic colors, the RI,
the shape of the Pull, etc.  Guaranteed.
NOTE - This material is generating a lot of inquiries.  If these parcels are
gone, we will put you on a waiting list for future parcels.  Just contact us
via email below and let us know that you require!

Depending on the total number of grams purchased, the sizes of the pieces,
etc.  the prices ranges from $7-10 per gram.  Shipping and insurance is $10
and we accept PayPal, checks, BidPay/Western Union, etc.    (Returns will be
charged for the initial postage and if paying by PayPal, a 3% charge will be
incurred, which is what we pay.)

As some of you already know, other companies offer this material up to twice
this price and with that material, one cannot facet larger stones because of
the color saturation - NOT this material though........  The Bigger the


Subject: Tucson Show changes - 2005
Date: Sun, 02 Jan 2005 07:41:00 -0200
To: LapidaryArtsDigest <lapidary@caprock-spur.com>
From: Robert <robertplowejr@uol.com.br>

02 January 2004

This year the GJX show is almost 50% larger. At least 180 of the ex-GLDA
exhibitors from the old Holiday Inn Downtown (Raddison now) will be in a
GJX annex tent this year.

There will not be a show at the old Holiday Inn Downtown (Raddison) this

The GLDA moved its show out of town to the Starr-Pass Resort - and many
ex-exhibitors jumped ship.

Supposedly in 2006 the GJX will take over the show in the Raddison and
these exhibitors from the GJX annex tent will be back in the Raddison.

Best regards,
Robert Lowe
Lowe Associates - Brasil
Gemstones, Rough, Specimens
Tucson - February 2 - 7, 2005 - GJX # 205
e-fax: 1-240-757-6022
e-mail: USA    < robertplowejr@juno.com >
e-mail: Brasil < robertplowejr@uol.com.br >


Subject: BIO: Dennis Fenton
From: res1q702
To: lapidary@caprock-spur.com
Date: Mon, 3 Jan 2005 18:58:50 -0500

Hello, Thurmond.  I became interested in lapidary in the late 1990's and
subscribed to the Faceters Digest at that time.  I've been too busy to
participate in the hobby in the past few years, moving my family from
Indiana to Florida and opening a business (and dealing with four
hurricanes last summer).  This weekend I pulled the Ultra Tech, laps,
Genie, saw, rough, etc. from the attic and plan to build a little
retreat for lapidary in the garage.  I see a few familiar names in the
recent postings and look forward to getting back into the swing of


Hi Dennis,  Welcome to the new list.



From: PaulElia@aol.com
Sent: Friday, December 24, 2004 2:30 PM
Subject: Large Vibrating Lap

I came across your Lapidary site.  I cast large glass pieces up to 45"
long and have had no luck locating a large vibrating lap.  Any ideas?
You help will be really appreciated.

Paul Elia

This e-mail was forwarded to me via Hale Sweeny. If you respond
please copy Paul Elia and the list with your reply.


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