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DPS Ammonite
5 minutes ago, Kane said:

Just so we know:

 

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Anyhow, I hope to get back to some preparation next week when we have a minor hiatus from the warmth.

 

It would be interesting to see a map showing imperial vs metric usage by country in scientific settings and publications. I bet that the US is mainly metric.

 

If it were not for car odometers being in miles and topo maps marked in miles and feet, I would be mostly metric.

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With it being a rainy day, decided to do some light jobs in the lab. Going through my display cabinet, I bumped into this Flexicalymene senaria I found years ago at a site that is no longer accessible. I had forgotten all about it. I had found this when I didn't have the tools and techniques I have today:

 

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Dirty little bugger. 

 

Many of these I see prepped are done in a rush on account of them being relatively common and less coveted than prone specimens. I decided to just take my time at much lower pressures to ensure none of the fine granulations got abraded off.

 

Some quick snaps. One more quick pass and blow out any remaining dolomite in the cracks and it can go back into the case. Just about perfect (the white in the pygidial grooves is dolomite that needs blowing out): 

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very nice.  

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Malcolmt

If only we could collect there again

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8 minutes ago, Malcolmt said:

If only we could collect there again

I know... :( 

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FossilNerd

It went from a dirty little bugger to a cute little guy (or gal). I like that you took your time and were able to leave the granulations. Good job! 

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Thanks @FossilNerd! I'm sure there are some other finds from the early days that could use a bit of attention!

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FossilDAWG

That one turned out very nice indeed! :wub: I always liked the enrolled Flexis, but I know they got less respect than they deserved due to being relatively common.  I guess they are more precious now that access is so limited!

 

Don

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Fossildude19

Nice job, Kane!  :Smiling:

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Although not as common as they appear in some US locations, one could find them scoping the talus piles at this site. One of their neat qualities on account of size was the ability to survive the crusher, as there would be a few in the fine gravel hills. A lot of us sure do miss that site, so it makes us appreciate what few sites we have even more. 

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Ludwigia
7 minutes ago, Kane said:

A lot of us sure do miss that site

Count me in there too. :(

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Top Trilo

Wonderful prep Kane, is an enrolled trilobite tougher to prep? Looks like it would be hard but you still did a great job

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30 minutes ago, Top Trilo said:

Wonderful prep Kane, is an enrolled trilobite tougher to prep? Looks like it would be hard but you still did a great job

Thanks. :) 

I wouldn't say it is harder or easier as they both have their unique challenges. I suppose if the enrolled ones are free of matrix, that cuts out any need to do any matrix-scaping. :D  This one was fairly easy as the matrix is not too tough -- it melts like butter under dolomite.  :b_wdremel:

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Huntonia

Excellent work on the prep Kane! 

 

A real shame about the site being closed down, so many places I'll never get to visit :shakehead:, I do hope to make it up there someday to hunt for those Canadian bugs!

 

By the way, what do you use to hold loose fossils in place during prep? So far I use double sided tape but I've found it a bit too weak for most purposes.

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6 hours ago, Huntonia said:

Excellent work on the prep Kane! 

 

A real shame about the site being closed down, so many places I'll never get to visit :shakehead:, I do hope to make it up there someday to hunt for those Canadian bugs!

 

By the way, what do you use to hold loose fossils in place during prep? So far I use double sided tape but I've found it a bit too weak for most purposes.

Thanks! :) 

In terms of loose fossils, I just hold it in place with my fingers, turning it as needed. If I let go and don't move the abrader out of the way in time, it doesn't have far to go for a soft roll from the riser to the base of the blast box. For rollers I wouldn't use tape as one is constantly turning it to ensure the proper angle for the abrasion unit. At times, it is just a puff of dolomite at a very specific spot before changing the angle. I know someone who uses a sandbag in his box, which might be even more convenient as you can form it in such a way as to create a kind of dip so the roller doesn't... roll away! :D 

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  • 1 month later...

This one came from a friend of mine who spent a number of years performing trilobite research in Morocco. Paralejurus elayounensis is not a typical species to see for sale as opposed to P. dormitzeri or P. spatuliformis. This one comes from the same couche as Walliserops

 

Pictured here is how it initially looked: bit of pygidium showing and how the pieces glued together on its left side.

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At three and five hours, respectively. There are some very thin-skinned areas, so it was somewhat unavoidable that a few bits of shell would pop off even at the slightest tough of the covering matrix with the fine scribe. 

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At 10 hours. I still need to smooth out the tool marks around the edges of the trilobite (waiting on a stylus in the mail), and the restoration areas are temporary until the health order is lifted to allow the purchase of non-essential items so I can go to the hobby shop to get the paint needed to match the rest of the trilobite. 

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Very nice Kane.

 

RB

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FossilDAWG

That came out very nice!

 

Don

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Thanks, all! 

My next major project (among far too many projects) will likely be this large slab of Ceraurus from Trenton Falls, NY:  

2DA52A72-B3B1-4B2D-9357-05F93C57AC7F.jpeg

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Fossildude19

:popcorn::popcorn::popcorn::popcorn:

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FossilDAWG

That Cerarus slab reminds me of a project I would love to get into the hands of someone with prep experience in Verulam shale material.  Its a (unfortunately rather massive) limestone slab with a shale-filled depression on top, and in that depression are at least 12 complete Flexicalymene with possibly more still buried.  I collected it back around 1980 from the Lakefield quarry and after an initial ham-handed attempt at prepping with a hammer and small chisel I realized it needed to be left for someone with proper skills and tools.  Unfortunately the slab is 4-5 inches thick and very heavy so I need to figure out how to slice about three inches off the bottom.

 

Don

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@FossilDAWG -- Oh my, that sounds like a stunning prize piece! From the sounds of it, the slab might be due for a rock saw along the layer to thin it out, but it would be important to see it before making that call, and then determining where those cuts would be made safely without cracking the shaly layer. That would certainly be a slab I'd love to prep, but perhaps we both know someone up here who could leverage a lot more experience to do it justice (and given size/weight that would make mailing prohibitively expensive, it makes sense to bring it up here when next you visit, once the borders reopen). If you ever get a chance to snap a photo, I'd love to see it! 

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Malcolmt

If the border ever reopens seems more apropo these days.......

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