Gemstone Tumbling, Cutting & Drilling: A Simple Guide to Finishing Rough Stones

Gemstone Tumbling, Cutting & Drilling: A Simple Guide to Finishing Rough Stones

by James Magnuson


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Gemstone Tumbling, Cutting & Drilling: A Simple Guide to Finishing Rough Stones by James Magnuson

Gemstones are naturally beautiful, but you can make them glisten and shine. This beginner's guide covers all the techniques you need to know: tumbling, cutting, face polishing and more. It pertains to a wide range of popular gemstones, from agates to turquoise, and it provides information about recommended equipment and supplies. Plus, it introduces jewelry making with seven projects. By following the authors' simple approach, you'll create finished stones worthy of displaying, selling or making into jewelry.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781591934608
Publisher: Adventure Publications, Incorporated
Publication date: 06/15/2015
Pages: 176
Sales rank: 499,886
Product dimensions: 5.40(w) x 8.40(h) x 0.40(d)

About the Author

As a young boy growing up in rural northern Illinois, Jim Magnuson spent much of his free time hunting for fossils that were abundant in the limestone quarries and in creek beds. He would often come home, pockets bulging with his latest finds. Jim still has the best fossils from his boyhood collection and occasionally brings them out for display. For many years after leaving home, Jim put his focus on developing his career as an Information Technology professional, first in Chicago, then Los Angeles, and eventually settling in central Minnesota. A trip to the shores of Lake Superior reignited an old flame. But because fossils are uncommon in northern and central Minnesota, Jim re-directed his focus to equally rare stones known as agates and set out to learn about and hunt for these beautiful gemstones. Now Jim spends much of his free time in gravel pits, farm fields, and other outdoor locales where there are accumulations of Lake Superior gravel. He loves to share his hobby with family and friends, and he enjoys his outings most with someone new to hunting Lakers that he can guide through the process of identifying agates in their true natural state. The earth is full of many treasures. Jim enjoys the peaceful hobby of hunting, polishing and organizing for presentation, and giving away agates to those who find them interesting and beautiful.

While never able to create her own art, Carol Wood has always had a passion for the creative. She found photography to be the perfect outlet. Originally from northern Illinois, she still resides in the same locale and photographs everything from babies to, well, agates. It is more than a hobby for Carol, who makes photography her living since her departure from a career in banking. Carol has attended photographic workshops and seminars across the United States. She strives for quality and originality - usually at the expense of her family's patience. Carol was introduced to the beauty of Lake Superior Agates many years ago, and she is an avid hunter when she has time to visit any location near the swath of the glacial till. Her love of the stones, along with her brother Jim's passion to share them, led to the idea for their books, THE STORIED AGATE and THE FAIRBURN AGATE.

Table of Contents

Introduction 7

Getting Started 11

Gemstone Materials Commonly Used in Lapidary Work 12

Lapidary Machines 14

Lapidary Machine and Supply Pricing 15

A Few More Suggestions 17

Choosing Gemstones 19

Gemstone Prices 20

Selecting High-Quality Gemstones 20

A Visual Guide to Selecting Gemstones 23

Tumble Polishing 45

Recommended Equipment 46

Setup and Operation 48

Getting the Best Tumbling Results 51

Tumbling and Polish Options 53

Tumbling Stages 54

Tumbling Process Steps 56

Getting Started 57

Comprehensive Tumbling Chart 63

Tumbling Tips Summary 66

Cutting 71

Recommended Equipment 73

Setup and Operation 74

Making the Best Cut 78

Getting Started 82

Cutting Tips Summary 85

Face Polishing 87

Recommended Equipment 89

Setup and Operation 90

Choosing the Right Gemstones to Face Polish 94

Determining How to Face Polish a Stone 97

Before You Start 98

Getting Started 101

Face Polishing Tips Summary 109

Routing 111

Recommended Equipment 112

Setup and Operation 112

Getting Started 113

Another Use for a Lapidary Router 115

Routing Tips Summary 117

Drilling 119

Recommended Equipment 121

Setup and Operation 122

Two Types of Drilling 123

Critical Drilling Tips 125

Getting Started 126

Drilling Tips Summary 131

Cabochon Making 133

Recommended Equipment 135

Setup and Operation 135

Getting Started 137

Jewelry Making 147

Cabochons in Bezel Settings 148

Cabochons in Clay Settings 150

Face Drilled Stones and Jump Rings 152

Headpins and Eyepins 154

Top Drilled Stones and Upeyes 156

Side Drilled Stones (Beads) 158

Wire-Wrapped Tumbled Whole Stones 160

Wire-Wrapped Edge-Routed Stones 163

Glossary 164

Recommended Reading for Jewelry Making 170

Quality Lapidary Equipment Manufacturers 171

Index 172

About the Authors 174

About the Photographer 176

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