Andamooka Matrix Opal Treatment!

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I thought that I should make a video on Matrix [opal] specifically Australian Andamooka Matrix opal [this] can this material can be treated and Sometimes when you’re lucky, you’ll get results like this, so trying to keep this short let’s Let’s get into it. [I] started on this particular piece with this Which is now about [7] ounces, but I started with 12 ounces [I’ve] cut pieces of it off Andamooka Matrix opal is basically opal [that] seeps into Sedimentary rocks surrounding seams of solid opal in fact on this particular piece you can see this area is Is a different shade and at the surface This is a continuation of it. This is solid opal adjacent You can see my finger through that this is solid opel with a mixture of A Matrix Opal adjacent to it there was one large area on top of this on the top part of this stone that I thought that I could get a Solid Matrix a solid opal Cabochon and this is what I was able to get this is about 9 carats so occasionally you get you get areas in which the solid opel is adjacent to the Matrix opal. Matrix means that the opal has seeped into the surrounding Matrix which is usually sedimentary rock like Sandstone or Claystone siltstone mudstone things of that that ilk I suppose that [Claystone] or maybe the most common type anyway here’s an example of a piece of treated Matrix this has been treated with by Placing it into a concentrated solution of sugar under heat for a couple of days and then removing it and placing it in concentrated sulfuric acid under heat for a day or so this is an area in which there’s a seam of precious opal really nice quality precious opal within an area of a Matrix opal of relatively low quality, but the The precious opal is outstanding This is what Matrix looks like untreated it It generally is colorless, but you can get an idea of the of the color Usually in some areas sometimes with lesser opal you can’t. This is solid material There is a type of Matrix opal that’s called Rainbow Matrix. Which is a very porous stone as lots of holes in it and It it takes treatment very well, but is Is more like pumice. compared to say … I Don’t know concrete or some more solid Rock like Sandstone or Claystone I’m not talking about Matrix. I’m not talking about Rainbow Matrix. This is regular Matrix. Now how is this going to treat? You buy a piece of Matrix opal and say, “Will this treat well, or will it not treat well?” There’s no way really to know Definitely the more solid it is the greater likelihood that It will not treat. To give you some examples: Here’ is a large piece of Matrix. As you can see the treatment is variable. Some areas didn’t treat at all (This is polished specimen) Other areas treat extremely well but ultimately There really is not enough there. I just left it as a specimen. I polished it. It looks pretty good Here’s another example that I expected the same results, but guess what? That’s the only area that treated the rest of it … these are basically pebbles of a different type of rock within it. But this is treated Matrix that didn’t treat so well. This is one that treated a little better. Here’s a little piece of Matrix that’s been treated, but it’s nice-looking, but it didn’t treat so well. Here is a little cabochon that I made out of a lower grade of Matrix that treated fairly well, but it’s not very colorful Here’s another piece very difficult to appreciate If I can get this focused in … it is very It’s pretty it treated very well, But it doesn’t have a lot of color now this particular stone that I dealt with a [12-ounce] stone, I had to cut a lot away and I Subjected the first thing I did is [that] I took some slices off and removed the area of mixed solid and Matrix and I got that little solid cabochon out of it. But [I] wanted to test it as far as how well it would treat. That would allow me to decide whether I wanted to to cut Parallel to the to the color bars or whether I wanted to try to cut with the color bars — because I have a very nice color bar here and there and it’s Not quite as good there, but it’s it’s it’s enough. This is what I would call “Gem Matrix.” It’s got a lot of color even when not treated. So the first thing I did is I cut little pieces off. I sort of made little cabs [out] of it just Just to test the waters to see what? Little pieces from around the thing would look like. And this is what I ended up with That treated fairly well. It’s a little bit untreated there on one side of this rock on the side opposite the part with the purple solid (opal) was an area of true gem quality Solid opal, but it was a very thin layer and on the backside of that, this is What the matrix turned out to be. This is one side of the (main) piece. Probably from a lot right there. that treated (well). This this gave me real hope I also Here’s another one. That’s a very nice It’s very nice color Here’s one that I polished completely but it’s got that dividing line between the [bluish] in the more brilliant red and green because this one and Somewhere in here. I have another little stone that came from this This is a pretty impressive little piece. So, with relatively short treatment time I was able to see the potential. So then, I cut full slice off of there and a full slice off of there, and I think a full slice off of there as well and This is what they turned out to be this is a slice from here And these two pieces are [from] this side This broke in half before I put it in acid. So that’s the outer part the inner part you can see the variability in the treatment This is actually a pretty impressive thing with the white in it it almost looks like “Picture Jasper,” a type of rock that shows a picture of a landscape, but that’s this side, and then this is an 87 carat slice from the main side This is the outer part with some dark spots and the inner part which is Honestly — about as good as it gets. The background is dark nearly black with one one treatment and We’ve got these incredible color bars, and this is cross-cutting although, it’s quite cut perpendicular to the to the color bars The other side has retained some Raw Sandstone and it’s just getting into The really great treatable Matrix on the other side. So, what I’m left with is, like I said, about ….. I think it’s 5.7 ounces of of untreated Matrix left and I think that given the Incredible color of this (I’ll wet it a little bit..) that I think I can continue to cut slices off of this and and make outstanding cabochons that treat well and And that’s my plan. So that’s a little lesson on Andamooka matrix opal. Matrix opal It doesn’t have the value of solid opal, but it sometimes has the color of the best of the best black opal.

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