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hanksite price

Posted by José Zendrera  
José Zendrera December 23, 2011 10:56PM
Perhaps somebody can explain me why there is so big difference between this two specimens of hanksite I saw this month in e-bay. Really they are so different to justify the price difference? Or perhaps price depends of seller reputation more than specimen characteristics? What you think about? I would appreciate your comments.

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 12/23/2011 11:04PM by Jose Zendrera.
Gary Weinstein December 23, 2011 11:29PM
The first difference is the size, then the clarity and most importantly on this one is its provenence. As it was in the Ordway collection it has more collector value. Also, other differences could be in the dealer and his idea of what something is worth, or the bidders idea, especially if it is something they do not see a lot of and they need it to fill out their collection.
Alfredo Petrov December 24, 2011 12:09AM
Jose, the "law of supply and demand" does not apply to mineral specimens, so one should not expect uniform pricing of similar-looking pieces.
José Zendrera December 24, 2011 12:53AM
Thanks Gary and Alfredo. I think I begin to understand. Then, minerals are as works of art (in fact they are!) and pricing depends on many, many things, some are directly related to the quality of the specimen and some are entirely circumstantial, ethereal and subjective. Sometimes is a nuisance, you can't bid so high, and others is a blessing, you can find real bargains! That's life ...
Rock Currier December 25, 2011 05:57AM
Each year the gem and mineral society at Trona runs field trips out on the lake and collectors and go our onto the lake and scoop up large quantities of the crystal mash that has been pumped out on the surface of the salt lake. The company that works the deposit by extracting chemicals from the brine from the lake cuts holes (wells) in the salt down perhaps as much as 100 feet and drops an explosive change down the wholes to loosen the crystals and then air rafts them up onto the surface of the lake. You can easily scoop up a car truck full of them if you want. Sometimes quantities of very good hanksite, sulfohalite and others can be had for the taking. How much you can sell them for is left to the imagination and brazenness of the seller. In addition you should consider that a substantial percentage of these crystals will eventually decompose over a period of time because they are not stable under normal atmospheric conditions.

Rock Currier
Crystals not pistols.
Steve Hardinger December 25, 2011 06:04AM
The reputation of the dealer selling the specimens also plays a role. Rob Lavinsky, in general, commands greater respect among the mineralogical community than does ebay.
Rock Currier December 25, 2011 06:10AM
Hanksites are fairly distinctive and those of one dealer are usually very similar to those of any other dealer. You will have to decide how much to pay for the respect. OH, by the way I do respect Rob Lavinsky.

Rock Currier
Crystals not pistols.
José Zendrera December 26, 2011 12:34AM
Thanks to all for your comments and specially to mister RC for the interesting story of bombed halides.
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