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Hints & Tips

General Hints and Tips #1

Cutting Geodes in the right place can be tricky. Try rolling the geode on a flat floor several times and mark the "up" side each time. Then cut on a plan parallel with the floor. Crystal growth inside the geode is probably most developed at the top and bottom of its resting position. Original source unknown from Choo-Choo Chatter, 3-4/04 via Rock Writings 09/04

To open geodes, soak a string in kerosene, tie it around the geode. Burn the string, then plunge the geode in cold water. In many cases, this will crack the geode and a light tap with a hammer will finish the job. Original source unknown from Breccia 06/98 via The Nugget 01/99

Gold's worst enemy is chlorine. Continue exposure to chlorine in swimming pools, chlorinated cleaners, etc., can eventually cause it to weaken and break. From World Gold Council via Drywasher's Gazette 01/99

To recycle dirty oil from your trim saw, pour the used oil in a disposable container, e.g., a coffee can. Add hot water and stir. The hot water warms the oil and lowers its viscosity so that the trash can settle out more easily. Water, being denser than the oil, sinks to the bottom. The dirt that suspended in the oil, settles out and sinks to the bottom of the water, leaving clean oil on top. Put the whole works in the freezer. The water will freeze. Pour off the clean oil and throw away the dirt and water. Dick Rathjen, Backbender's Gazette, 06/96 via Rocky Review 01/99

To judge the size of a jeweler's saw blade to use, figure two teeth should touch the material being cut. Lubricate the blade before using (beeswax is good). Al Klein AFMS Newsletter 10/98 via The Nugget 01/99

Measuring Grit

Most tumbling instructions tell you how much grit and polish to use per pound of rock, and is most often given in ounces. An easy way to arrive at ounces is to use a standard measuring spoon and level off with a knife.

From The Agatizer via Del Air Bulletin 01/07

Bicarbonate of Soda is one of the most reliable aids for outings. It

From Drywasher's Gazzette via The Rockhounder 02/99