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FossilDudeCO

An ENTIRE Petrified forest!

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digit
21 hours ago, FossilDudeCO said:

 I actually got them from my work at a print shop. They ordered them by the pallet for the products they ship. They are made by Elkay Plastics and are 8" x 10" gusseted 4mil bags. The size is perfect for a medium flat rate box! Rain happens, at least it didn't hinder work!

 

Good to know. I'll look into that--hopefully I can buy quantities smaller than a pallet.

 

The rain didn't particularly hinder at all--was mostly continuous light sprinkles for 4 days straight--noon and night. At least it kept the sun exposure down so that sunblock wasn't necessary (even out in a boat with no shade protection).

 

Cheers.

 

-Ken

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fossiling

:envy: WOW amazing! Cool stuff!

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digit

I've kept my tumbler busy these last couple of months working on shaping the chunks of Blake's petrified wood. There was enough initially to run two batches during the shaping runs. As the sharp corners get knocked off and the pieces take on the the soft curved contours of river tumbled rocks, they are able to pack down into a smaller volume. This is due as much to the more rounded shapes as to the mass that is removed as part of the shaping process. The highly silicified mineral that has replaced the wood (chalcedony?) is hard stuff and shaping has progressed steadily though slowly.

 

I tried squeezing the two batches together earlier on but it was just too much for the 15 pound capacity of my hexagonal barrel (the pieces didn't have enough room to tumble) and so each batch got one more shaping spin for a couple weeks separately. Virtually all of the sharp edges are gone now (except for some interesting voids in some of the pieces) and they have been reduced in mass enough that the remaining material will now fill my tumbler to capacity and I can proceed at normal speed now that I've combined the pieces into a single load. I did a spin with the 120/220 grit silicon carbide as the first stage of the polishing phase while I was out in Idaho for the last couple of weeks. I've just unloaded and cleaned the pieces for their next spin with a finer pre-polish. For this I'm giving them a spin in 500 grit silicon carbide for about a week. After that I'll finish the polishing with an ultra-fine aluminum oxide polish which should give the pieces a high gloss so they look shiny even when dry. As you can see from the photo below, the pieces are shaped nicely and showing some really nice colors and patterns but though they are smooth to the touch they still have a matte finish when dry. An idea of how they will look when polished can be previewed when seeing them wet while rinsing off the residue of the previous grit. Should be just a few weeks more and we'll see their transformation complete.

 

 

Cheers.

 

-Ken

 

P8275040.jpg

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JohnBrian

^^^Looks good!

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