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Huntonia

Huntonia's Amateur Prep Work

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Huntonia

I'm starting to get into mechanical prep seeing as with the quarantine I have extra time on my hand. My equipment arrived before my projects did so I've been practicing on this invert I had on hand. I believe this is a gastropod? Or is it a bivalve? I can never keep them straight in my head.

Anyways, I forgot to take a before picture :DOH: so I apologize for this awful photo as it was the only one I had: 20200526_210202.thumb.jpg.1b5fde0c796d39d5ce98bedbdf409ab7.jpg

 

 

And this is it currently:

20200526_210110.thumb.jpg.40e1b914ecc21a40438406f6e12b3e70.jpg

Obviously not done yet, needs some more work and then some serious clean up to make it look nice but I'm thinking to put it aside for a while. The matrix is very annoying. There is less than a millimeter of rock covering the left side but as I learned the hard way on a small section, haste leads to immediate damage of the fossil. Prying upwards is great for chipping the rock away quickly but wants to take the fossil with it :wacko:

I'll finish it eventually but it will be slow, slow going. 

 

On a more exciting note one of my real projects arrived today. Here in a bit I'll draw up and post a plan of attack and tomorrow I'll probably get a start on it. My hope is that with this thread I can get your guys' opinions and advice to help prevent me from adding another cautionary tale on the bungled extractions thread :)

 

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Huntonia

Okay, here's tomorrow's plan: I have here a decent Ranilia, it's a cool species and sounded like some fun prep work. Tomorrow I plan to do some very sparing work on the sections shown in red:

20200526_221418.jpg.066bcd766854b8d2a3cd066c092d3566.jpg

Hopefully this will give me a better idea of what I'm dealing with in respects to the claws. They are there but are razor thin and I imagine quite fragile :unsure:

The carapace feels stronger than I expected which is a big plus. The matrix is very soft and crumbly but bits come of slowly in a fairly predictable manner, which I think is going to be both a blessing and a curse. I think when it comes to the fiddly bits around the claws I may be able to pull some of the matrix off safely with a soft paintbrush. 

Some stabilization is definitely going to be in order as I go, I have ready access to superglue, will that work or should I get some paraloid? 

 

I'm very excited to start this prep but the last thing I want to do is get stubborn and ruin the fossil, so I'm going into this with the mindset that if I feel the prep is beyond my ability I'll send it on to someone who can safely handle it. 

Tomorrow I'll check back to see if I need to revise my plan, and if not I'll proceed with caution

:thumbsu:

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Huntonia

Did some work on the ranilia today, nothing much but it's a start. the matrix is very workable and while the claws are still daunting I am feeling much more hopeful and confident in this prep. 

Before:

20200527_205627.jpg.8d876b3c3023c6bd7ff10dc5bfd7093b.jpg

And after about an hour or so today:

20200527_205544.thumb.jpg.740e19039ae6e2f0bd10e96568105080.jpg20200527_205604.thumb.jpg.3ec94e4fde5ce6998687aa8eab283d6d.jpg

I cleaned up the edge of the carapace a bit, pulled some matrix off the top and did some sparing work around the arms. I apologize as my photography skills leave much to be desired but you can see the areas I'm working on.

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Huntonia

I haven't posted on here in quite a while. I've just gotten my air abrasive setup finished and I've been playing around with it a bit today. For my initial test I've used an eldredgeops cephalon gifted to me by @connorp. This is at 60 PSI with baking soda

Before:

20201010_164100.thumb.jpg.c0c797e5963991b863a3e53efb79435c.jpg

After:

20201010_164149.thumb.jpg.b28cc3c45f8278346701794f660a8fd4.jpg

I might attack some of those stubborn spots again at a later date but for now I'm happy with it.

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Ptychodus04

Looking good.

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Misha

Nice!

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Huntonia

Thanks for the kind words! Sorry it's taken me a while to get around to posting on here again. Still working out the kinks with the abrasive setup. I've started work on some Ceraurus cephalons from the Platteville formation of Wisconsin, also courtesy of Connor's great generosity. 

Here is a before picture of both:

20201017_155739.jpg.ec7b1e57a94cf074eb23a8274588dade.jpg

And here's the progress I've made on the right one:

20201017_155710.thumb.jpg.40bcd1bb2bbd304b15bdee60ef85a4ef.jpg

I've hit a bit of a wall at the moment. The matrix is rather soft and the abrasive cuts through it easily. However, there seem to be some really hard spots clinging to the trilo that the abrasive won't hardly touch at all. Anyone familiar with this matrix had similar issues? I've ordered some dolomite, hopefully that will remedy the situation.

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Kane

Well done!

 

I know all too well the stubborn stuff. I would advise mixing a small amount of dolomite with the baking soda at first. This might get you through. Just a word of caution that the dolomite will burn through the bug, so keep the nozzle focused away from the areas you've already done. Baking soda tends to give a nice polish to the shell, which I can see here.

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Huntonia
6 minutes ago, Kane said:

Well done!

 

I know all too well the stubborn stuff. I would advise mixing a small amount of dolomite with the baking soda at first. This might get you through. Just a word of caution that the dolomite will burn through the bug, so keep the nozzle focused away from the areas you've already done. Baking soda tends to give a nice polish to the shell, which I can see here.

Thanks, I've noticed I don't have to worry much with the baking soda. I plan to use about 10% dolomite to start. It's definitely a learning curve but I'm slowly building my way up. :P

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Kane

Oh, I should ask if you also have dispensing needles. You can get a pack of 18 gauge disposables cheaply online, and affix those to your abrader tip. This really helps direct the flow to where you want it -- particularly in those tough nooks and crannies! 

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Huntonia

Yep! I'm using an 18 gauge dispensing needle at the moment. Here's a look at the abrader:

20201017_162847.thumb.jpg.468f929a04fb96a7f3a2180c371a3e99.jpg

I really need to clean off my workbench! Struggling to carve out a spot for fossil work in the already messy wood shop.

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Malcolmt

Looks good

 

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Ptychodus04

How are you keeping your abrasive contained? You’re getting good results. The abrasive will go everywhere without some kind of containment and collection. Also, I hope you’re wearing a respirator.

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Tidgy's Dad

Nice work! :)

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Huntonia
20 minutes ago, Ptychodus04 said:

How are you keeping your abrasive contained? You’re getting good results. The abrasive will go everywhere without some kind of containment and collection. Also, I hope you’re wearing a respirator.

I have just been using a cardboard box, the inside of which gets completely caked in baking soda.

Absolutely, I've been wearing an n95 from the start, no use getting powder in my lungs. Actually one of my biggest issues thus far has been my darn safety goggles fogging up. Hopefully I'll get the containment figured out a little better and won't need so much PPE. 

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Ptychodus04
10 hours ago, Huntonia said:

I have just been using a cardboard box, the inside of which gets completely caked in baking soda.

Absolutely, I've been wearing an n95 from the start, no use getting powder in my lungs. Actually one of my biggest issues thus far has been my darn safety goggles fogging up. Hopefully I'll get the containment figured out a little better and won't need so much PPE. 

If you get a NIOSH P100 respirator, the exhaust is in the center at the bottom so there’s no fogging issues. I built a blast cabinet from scrap wood with exhaust that drops into a bucket to collect larger particles connected to a dust collector with a 2 micron bag. The bucket keeps the bag from filling too quickly and I don’t have any dust (other than what I create outside the cabinet) filling my lab. Total cost was around $300. You’re going to find that fine dust collects all over your shop without some kind of remediation.

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RJB
On 10/17/2020 at 5:31 PM, Huntonia said:

Struggling to carve out a spot for fossil work in the already messy wood shop.

This made me laugh.  Your bench top is spotless compared to mine.  Also, back in the late 70's we used to drive from Oregon City to Canby for partys.  I had freinds there. 

 

RB

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jpc

I agree with Ptych... a blast cabinet can be built for pretty cheap.  The most expensive part of mine is the woodshop dust collector system for 450 bucks.  BUT you can do just as well with a shop vac. It is a LOT cheaper and much louder, and will not last too long if you run it continuously.  I can run my system for hours and it is fine.   

 

A quick search gave me this one.  This has all you need... a plastic bag on the bottom and a 5 micron bag on top.  Bingo.  179 bucks.  But it is Harbor Freight... what I call Cheap Chinese snarge Inc.  

https://www.harborfreight.com/2-hp-industrial-5-micron-dust-collector-97869.html?ccdenc=eyJjb2RlIjoiMzI0MzU1ODciLCJza3UiOiI5Nzg2OSIsImlzIjoiMTc5Ljk5IiwicHJvZHVjdF9p ZCI6IjM4OTEifQ%3D%3D &cid=paid_google|||&utm_source=google&utm_medium=cpc&utm_campaign=&utm_content=&gclid=Cj0KCQjw8rT8BRCbARIsALWiOvST_UIYmVyYbs7BMS574Ftic8hOkAF_jWa5endZugqLdlW6DDHpTQ4aAqcnEALw_wcB

 

But there are many options

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Huntonia

Tha is for the recommendations everyone, I'll definitely be working on the containment and collection right away. :thumbsu:

4 hours ago, RJB said:

This made me laugh.  Your bench top is spotless compared to mine.  Also, back in the late 70's we used to drive from Oregon City to Canby for partys.  I had freinds there. 

 

RB

You're only seeing the one semi clean spot, the whole rest of the table is barely useable through the clamps and boxes and other miscellaneous items :default_faint:

Canby's a pretty nice town I think. It sure has gotten bigger in recent years. I haven't seen much partying since I've been here but the 70s sure were a different time. :P

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Ptychodus04
3 hours ago, jpc said:

I agree with Ptych... a blast cabinet can be built for pretty cheap.  The most expensive part of mine is the woodshop dust collector system for 450 bucks.  BUT you can do just as well with a shop vac. It is a LOT cheaper and much louder, and will not last too long if you run it continuously.  I can run my system for hours and it is fine.   

 

A quick search gave me this one.  This has all you need... a plastic bag on the bottom and a 5 micron bag on top.  Bingo.  179 bucks.  But it is Harbor Freight... what I call Cheap Chinese snarge Inc.  

https://www.harborfreight.com/2-hp-industrial-5-micron-dust-collector-97869.html?ccdenc=eyJjb2RlIjoiMzI0MzU1ODciLCJza3UiOiI5Nzg2OSIsImlzIjoiMTc5Ljk5IiwicHJvZHVjdF9p ZCI6IjM4OTEifQ%3D%3D &cid=paid_google|||&utm_source=google&utm_medium=cpc&utm_campaign=&utm_content=&gclid=Cj0KCQjw8rT8BRCbARIsALWiOvST_UIYmVyYbs7BMS574Ftic8hOkAF_jWa5endZugqLdlW6DDHpTQ4aAqcnEALw_wcB

 

But there are many options

Mine is similar to this one. except, mine is 2.5hp. I have a 2.5" hose coming from the cabinet, into a bucket, then out, converting to the 4" hose to the intake on the unit. The unit is mounted on the wall with the bag hanging below. It is pretty compact and fits well in the back corner of the lab. It is strong enough to pick up chips created by all except my largest scribe.

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jpc

whatever you get, make sure it has a 5 micron containment bag.  You need the tighter weave for to prevent leaking through the bag. 

 

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Ptychodus04
11 minutes ago, jpc said:

whatever you get, make sure it has a 5 micron containment bag.  You need the tighter weave for to prevent leaking through the bag. 

 

The lower the micron size the better. If I could have gotten a 1 micron bag, I would have. :D

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jpc
27 minutes ago, Ptychodus04 said:

The lower the micron size the better. If I could have gotten a 1 micron bag, I would have. :D

I got a 5 cuz that's what they offered.  It works for me.  But yeah, if there is 1 available, go for it.

 

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