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amazonite

Posted by scott jamerson  
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scott jamerson July 12, 2011 08:59PM
ive got quite a lot of amazonite i've been finding in park and teller county colorado. i'd like to know what the stuff is worth, and also, the proper way to clean it.
here are some photos. most are nickel size some are golfball size.
i apologize for the pic quality. i had to drastically reduce quality to get them on here.
open | download - 6.png (34.1 KB)
open | download - 5.png (34.4 KB)
open | download - 4.png (134.3 KB)
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scott jamerson July 12, 2011 09:15PM
i managed to make the photos bigger. anyway, ive got a couple 5 gallon bucketsfull that need to be sorted and cleaned, but any advice would be appreciated. thanks.
open | download - 10.jpg (538.6 KB)
open | download - 9.jpg (548 KB)
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Rock Currier July 13, 2011 08:18AM
Less than $10 each for most of the specimen, up to perhaps $75 for the best amazonite cluster. Cant think the smoky Quartz crystals would sell for more than that. But they would need to be cleaned.

Rock Currier
Crystals not pistols.
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scott jamerson July 13, 2011 11:12AM
any idea how to clean amazonite? or quartz?
thanks
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Dean Allum July 13, 2011 05:20PM
Scott,

Click on the minfind.com icon that you find elsewhere on this page, then search for amazonite. The high end mineral dealers are asking ~$20 - $50 for pieces like yours. You can only expect to get a quarter this amount. Notice that the price goes way up if you can find nice smokey quartz attached to the amazonite.

These vendor specimens have all been cleaned with either oxalic-acid or super-iron-out. You can get some oxalic acid from Ackleys' Rock shop on Stone Avenue in Colorado Springs, and the SIO from Ace hardware. Many amazonites have also been treated with oil or wax to give them a darker blue color.

You should consider contacting the Lake George Gem & Mineral club. Their members are amazonite experts, and can keep you from accidentally claim jumping. Be sure to attend their August Show. Here is their website:
http://www.lggmclub.org/

Regards,
Dean Allum
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scott jamerson July 14, 2011 02:59AM
thanks, actually i will attend. my son will be going to the school there.
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scott jamerson July 14, 2011 03:11AM
thanks, i appreciate that link and the cleaning info. i never thought of wax. judging by those pictures i think i've got some pretty good specimens myself. time to break out the camera. i do have some quartz specimens with amazonite in them. and granite with clear, smoky, and amazonite. honest opinion though (and i would never accuse anyone's integrity), but some of the amazonite/qaurtz pieces from that link almost look like they may have been glued together.
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Rock Currier July 14, 2011 07:54AM
Cleaning Quartz and amazonite.

Rock Currier
Crystals not pistols.
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Rock Currier July 14, 2011 08:14AM
Scott,
I don't know specifically which specimens you think might be glued together, but some of them may be. The smoky quartz with amazonites are rare to collect intact from the pockets, and often combinations have been extensively repaired. Advanced collectors know to carefully collect everything from a pocket and keep the contents together because you never know when some rubbish piece of quartz or amazonite from the pocket will help you a lot in reconstructing good combination pieces which are worth a lot more than their component parts. After cleaning up over 1000 pounds of amazonite and quartz from the Crystal Peak area using different methods, I and my buddy Bob Bartsch feel that the secret is to first clean up the individual specimens as much as you can with hand tools and high pressure water before putting them in any chemicals. We feel that the best way to clean them is to put them this cleaned material in a saturated solution of oxalic acid and just wait a week or two and then take them out and soak them in water and then hit them again with high pressure water and let them dry out. We feel the drying out uses capillary action to draw the "iron" out of the crystals. Then put them back in the oxalic acid for another long soak, rinse and dry out and then repeat this process till the crystals are absolutely clean. Some amazonites from the Crystal Peak area appear to be iron stained right through to the center of the crystals. It took a long time for that "iron" to work its way into the crystals, and you can't expect to clean it out quickly if your crystals are heavily iron stained. The cleaning process can take months if you really want to do it right. We feel you can speed the process by warming the reagent solutions a little, but not too much. Like putting the containers in black containers or covering them with black plastic to absorb the sun's energy to warm the solutions. We do not recommend using crock pots to heat the reagents because we found that if the oxalic acid is hot over too long a period of time it tends to etch the feldspar a little.

Rock Currier
Crystals not pistols.
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Adam Kelly July 14, 2011 06:37PM
Scott,
You might post some pics in the trade forum if you have "too much" Other collectors from around the world might be interested in pieces, and willing to trade things they have collected excessive amounts of.
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sac July 30, 2011 02:07AM
I just when on my first amazonite hunt. I have my finds soaking in iron out but I don't know what to do after the look clean. Any instructions?
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Rock Currier August 02, 2011 09:17AM
Take them out of the iron out and let them dry out. Sometimes the "iron staining" will return, but usually not as dark. You may need to repeat the process several times.

Rock Currier
Crystals not pistols.
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scott jamerson August 05, 2011 01:22AM
i've had good luck with the iron out. i let them soah for 2 days or so, dry them and scrub with a wire brush. i dont like what it does to the granite though, on those pieces i have with amazonite quartz points and everything else all clustered together.
I havent found any 'make me rich' pieces, but a whole lot of smaller stones with really good color. some decent crystal formations. some of the granite matrix pieces are fist sized but they have a less appealing quality.
i'm most impressed with the granite embedded stones ive found...amazonite next to smoky and micah, maybe little baby clear quartz points growing around it.
i'm just wondering what to do with the amazonite....cant really find anybody that wants it.
i was hoping to find a market.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 08/05/2011 01:28AM by scott jamerson.
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Rock Currier August 05, 2011 10:16PM
There is always a good market for good amazonite crystals. Take some good pictures and put them up for sale on Ebay. That is where you will probably get the most money. Local rock shops will also buy them, but probably substantially less than if you put them up for sale one at a time on Ebay.

Rock Currier
Crystals not pistols.
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scott jamerson August 06, 2011 03:39AM
actually there are a lot of great pieces on ebay, that ive been watching go unsold...including mine.
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Rock Currier August 06, 2011 10:34AM
If they are going unsold, then it would stand to reason that the prices asked were too high. I and my buddy Bob Bartsch one summer dug more than a thousand pounds of specimens from a couple of claims near crystals peak, and we had a lot more trouble learning how to clean the material than we had selling it.

Rock Currier
Crystals not pistols.
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scott jamerson August 07, 2011 02:42PM
a lot of them are over priced. but ive seen some really nice pieces go unsold under $5. ive watched most of the stuff on there the last two weeks, and i dont think anyone has sold. wrong time of year? listed in the wrong place? who knows.
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Dean Allum August 07, 2011 09:17PM
Scott,
You should consider speaking with fellow Teller County native Derek Conrad of EBAY seller derek-sherry regarding marketing strategy.

Did you coat your specimens with silicone spray lubricant prior to photographing them (it is EBAY after all).

Big time rock vendors will be at the Denver show next month, maybe even Jewel Tunnel Imports.
http://www.denvermineralshow.com/

You will want to check out pinnacle5minerals for the best specimens.

-Dean Allum
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scott jamerson August 09, 2011 02:41AM
check this out. i would love some input on this one. i really hope the image posts, i used fileshack. anyway, this one was twice as big, but sadly broke in half. i think its an amozonite cluster embedded in iron.



amazonite
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scott jamerson August 09, 2011 02:45AM
another photo of the same
http://img811.imageshack.us/img811/1568/1006040k.jpg



and another neat find


http://img96.imageshack.us/img96/7238/1006062r.jpghere is another



Edited 3 time(s). Last edit at 08/09/2011 02:51AM by scott jamerson.
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victor rzonca August 09, 2011 03:29AM
Looks like a classic collapsed pegmatite pocket, cemented back together with goethite. Could be wrong.
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scott jamerson August 09, 2011 03:44AM
i should have left it as is...but after soaking. the black material, which is very thick, turns to rust.

anyway, is this worth anything?



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 08/09/2011 04:03AM by scott jamerson.
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Dean Allum August 09, 2011 05:19AM
Scott,

Your most satisfying answer regarding the value is going to come from the people you show these to in person at the rock show in Buena Vista this weekend (The Contin-Tail):
http://www.coloradorocks.org/index.htm

Or the Gem and Mineral show right there in Lake George the following weekend.
http://www.lggmclub.org/

By the way, crystal "sprays" of that black material can also be valuable specimens. In the box labeled 'Mineral' below, type the word "goethite", then click the word Goethite. Next you can change to page 97 to look at specimens from your area.

Regards,
Dean Allum
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Ray Hill August 09, 2011 05:29AM
Dean is right on the money, Scott, sometimes we miss the great secondaries, while focussing on the main mineral we are searching for...nice goethite sprays are worth real money, if they are unchipped or broken in any way...but so far your stuff does look to be a more massive variety.
Don't give up...you can still get lucky, the amazonite crystals in the goethite are of a stunning colour and although rounded, still are quite aesthetically appealing in that contrasting matrix...so don't throw out those unbroken crystals in the black matrix...as they are beauts.
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Rock Currier August 11, 2011 12:41PM
Probably less than $100 each. The first one looks to be broken up pieces of amazonite crystals cemented with goethite. If you try and clean it, it may fall apart.

Rock Currier
Crystals not pistols.
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David Zimmerman (2) August 20, 2011 12:47AM
Scott,

Nice looking stuff there but before you have visions of $$$ you really do need to check to see if you are claim jumping. We were just out there last week with a local claim owner and he was telling us that nearly all the claims that are within a 15 minute walk of the dirt roads are all double and triple claimed.

Rock, thanks for the cleaning advise. Our local claim guide was Ryan B. and he showed us where your old glory hole was....quite impressive and a nice job of reclaiming.
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scott jamerson August 25, 2011 01:45AM
i know i am not claim jumping because we are on my property. i have travelled into the forest areas, but for the most part claims are clearly marked. if not, i may pick up stones but i wont dig.
still, i am very interested in finding out which areas are claimed.
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