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Posted in response to Cleaning Arizona Diamond Point Crystals? from Centavita on May 13, 2010 at 18:15:06:

Re: Cleaning Arizona Diamond Point Crystals?

I'm assuming you mean after you've collected them:

They are more valuable if left in the rock than harvested out if it, though it's hard to get a showy specimen when a lot of barren rock contains just one small crystal. The last time I visited the area I found so many in this state that I just decided to teach myself to trim the specimens on the spot. This takes a lot of luck and a little planning of where you want the piece to break but using sledge and rock hammer I was pretty satisfied with my first attempts at field trimming. Cover the end with the crystal on it in a rag or gloved hand so if it does pop out you won't lose it.

The (in place) crystals there live in calcite filled cavities so etching them out with muriatic (aka hydrochloric) acid could be another means of getting them out if you must. It's available in hardware stores at 30% +or- concentration (swimming pool acid) and you'll need to take precautions using it such as rubber gloves, safety goggles and using it outdoors in an area where children, pets or unknowing adults could be exposed to it. The fumes are nasty!
I've never heard of someone using acid on DP specimens though. Most people keep them in matrix if not found loose (as a great many are) to begin with.

Try a little trimming with the hammer and maybe a chisel (& safety glasses) on one of your lesser specimens and see how you do...

Hope this helps

From Jim - May 14, 2010 at 08:23:17

Message: 69034



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