Cut Rocks

Sagenitic Agate

Sagenitic Agate

This cab, which is very large, approximately 1 1/4 x 2 1/2 inches, was not cut (as I usually do) from a large geode or nodule. Rather, the stone, when originally collected by me from The Carver Agate Field, was essentially the same shape and size as pictured. Rock # 4694 It had the classical amygdaloidal (almond) shape with a flat bottom and rounded top. I hand ground, smoothed and polished the outside of this specimen. While grinding away a small amount of the stone to reveal the underlying sagenitic agate, the crystal filled geode center appeared. When I began grinding, I had no idea that I would grind through the thin surface into an underlying crystal filled center. The end of the stone with the yellow dot which looks like it has ice around it (looks a lot like Antarctica, doesn’t it?) is what I have previously seen and […]

Read More

Odd Fellows “All Seeing Eye” Agate

Odd Fellows “All Seeing Eye” Agate

Folks looking at my polished stones often comment on seeing an image in the stone. Usually, I see the image they point out, but I did not see it until it was brought to my attention. It is much like seeing faces or images in the clouds. Well, this week after I cut and polished a cabochon, I saw the Odd Fellows ‘All Seeing Eye’. A bit of history and personal history is in order. Rock #4698 The “Eye” The Odd Fellows were a very popular fraternal organization with over 1,000,000 US members ‘back in the day’. They were social, secretive and ritualistic, much like the Masonic order. They were also charitable and had one basic requirement in order to belong: the belief in a supreme being (God). Their primary and most famous symbol was the ‘All Seeing Eye’ which was also a Masonic symbol. In fact, our founding fathers, […]

Read More

Spectacularly Interesting Carver Vein Agate!

Spectacularly Interesting Carver Vein Agate!

The jagged rind of this agate is the rough lava or crack in which the agate formed. While the crack was filling with dissolved silica, forming the fortification agate on the upper right, some fractured yellow jasper shards or chips fell into the vein or crack and was surrounded by the silica which agatized! Photo 4690 shows the jasper shard, which was cut by the diamond saw: Photo #4690 Photo 4689 is the same shard of jasper on the other side of the saw blade that cut this second slab: Photo 4689 Photo 4689 enlarged is ‘filled’ with sagenitic inclusions that formed as silica was filling the crack or vein in the lava: Photo 4689 This sagenite indicates the bottom of the rock as formed. Note there is no such sagenite on the top side of the stone as seen in photo 4688: Photo 4688 Gravity explains why the sagenitic […]

Read More

Five Random Carver Agates

Five Random Carver Agates

Here are five random Carver agates I cut this week! One is the first one I’ve seen! These are five of the six agates I cut this week. The sixth stone will be the subject of my next blog. It is so cool and unusual. Detail of Rock #4681 – Click to enlarge Rock #4679 – Click to enlarge Rock #4685 – Click to enlarge Rock #4683 – Click to enlarge Rock #4687 – Click to enlarge Being lucky enough to cut five totally different agate types in a single week is a ‘rock hound’ fantasy! And why I never get bored as I continue to explore the amazing diversity of the Carver Agate Field agates. The highly variable colors, patterns, banding, and sagenitic inclusions make these just pure fun. Rock #4685 is another ‘first’ for me: white matrix with multiple colored sagenitic inclusions. I wish I had 50 pounds […]

Read More

My Birthday Agates!

My Birthday Agates!

These stones are maybe the prettiest agates I have cut. Or, they just seem like the prettiest because I just cut them! Both show clear evidence of red and yellow jasper that was fractured into shards and then cemented back together by silica which entered into the cracks. When the silica enters the cracks, it creates tiny fortification agates and other banded agates, e.g., a jasp-agate. I think the patterns created are simply beautiful. The free form shapes of these stones are the result of trying to capture all of the detail and coloration that is present. If I had cut the stones in the more conventional round or oval cabochon shape, much of the stones’ patterns and coloration would have been lost. Rock #4643 Rock #4645

The Lava Lamp in The Ghost

The Lava Lamp in The Ghost

This stone simply contains lots of cool stuff, particularly when enlarged or magnified. The unenlarged photograph shows a pale whitish ghost-like structure up through which a lava lamp-shaped log arises. Rock #4186 : Click to enlarge If you don’t think that is cool enough, take a look at the enlarged photos of the bottom center and bottom right of the stone. The bottom right of the stone as shown enlarged is a botryoidal structure, which is defined as having the appearance of a bunch of grapes. Bottom Right of Rock #4186 : Click to enlarge The other enlarged photo shows the botryoidal structure being cut open and appearing to have a somewhat hollow center. Bottom Center of Rock #4186 : Click to enlarge Later, I will be doing a more detailed examination of botryoidal agates, with more photos and discussion as to how I believe they are formed. Rock #4569 […]

Read More

Zipper Geode (I found it, I named it!)

Zipper Geode (I found it, I named it!)

This is one half of a fractured geode which shows a much earlier fracture that was healed by quartz crystals filling the earlier fracture. While it is very common to find geodes with fractures that are filled (or healed) by secondary deposition of silica in the crack (fracture), it is quite unusual to find that the secondary deposition results in macro crystalline (visible to the eye) quartz crystals extruded from the crack. To me it looks like a crystal quartz zipper! Rock #3998

Winter Stone Cutting and Wood Cutting in Maine

Winter Stone Cutting and Wood Cutting in Maine

My cutting of the voluminous Carver material continues between wood cutting activity to heat my home. Rock #4604 Rock #4606 Winter is wood cutting time in Maine as the swamps and low places, which are otherwise filled with water, freeze hard, leveling out the low muddy places. I access these frozen places on my ATV and cut and haul out my firewood. I split the wood with my wood splitter and then stack it on my porch (a 2 to 4 day supply), move it inside, and then ‘feed’ my wood stove as needed. Stove and Woodpile Splitter and Woodpile Why do I store wood inside when it is piled conveniently on the porch? Because this morning at 5 a.m. it was 7 degrees above zero and at 9:30 a.m. it had dropped to 0 degrees! Warm wood burns easier than cold wood. Cutting rocks is much easier than cutting […]

Read More

Blue Filigree Agate

Blue Filigree Agate

I found it. I cut it. I named it. This is another ‘one off’ from The Carver agate field. The stone is so spectacular, different, and beautiful, that I wish I had another stone or more of the same stone. I do not. Rock #4576: Blue FiligreeClick on the image to enlarge This is a slab from a single geode I cut around Christmas 2021. I strongly urge the viewer to enlarge the photo, if possible. The stone has various shades of blue and there are tiny light blue bubbles that give the agate opalescence, which is to say, it shimmers like an opal. Although the stone is not opal, I believe the same cause of opalescence in opals has caused this specimen to opalesce, e.g., the tiny grayish blue bubbles seen in this stone under magnification create the strong opalescent effect. Rock #4576: Blue Filigree Detail The gold filigree […]

Read More

Fragmented Filament Agate from The Carver Agate Field + Video

Fragmented Filament Agate from The Carver Agate Field + Video

Between gardening, yard work, and carpentry projects, I have been cutting a few stones this summer. The video below gives you a quick look at what I have been up to. Most of the stones are pretty, but one in particular (the fragmented filament agate) looks like a bottle full of eyebrows or eyelashes. You may ask “What the hell is a fragmented filament agate?” Well, I am going to tell you. Nodules, geodes and agates often form in the inside of gas bubbles that form in lava. The bubbles form while the lava is still hot and pliable. Later, after the lava has cooled, water containing silica and minerals permeate the lava and cracks in the lava entering the ‘bubble’ (technically called a vesicle or vug). Some of these minerals and silica will form a thin layer on the inside of the bubble. This thin layer sometimes scales off […]

Read More