History – Part One : ROCKS

by laurie jane kern on April 2, 2009

I have always liked rocks and I am not talking specifically about sparkly stones such as diamond or other such items. I am talking about tigers eye, pyrite cubes, geodes, quartz, malachite.

Then I discovered AGATES.

AND then I discovered AGATE SLABS!!!

I was gathering quite a collection of slab rough when I finally went looking on ebay and bought a small flat lap machine that has a 6″ diameter wheel. I had been playing with it on and off for a year, starting in 2007.  I had polished a few agates but not really made any cab’s.

In early 2008 a friend of ours who we met in our Gem & Mineral club offered to teach me how to make cabs. SO on a Sunday afternoon in September, I went over with a few pieces of rough. Obi-wan Don, as he shall now be called showed me how to cut an oval, circle, tear drop and triangle out of my rough. Then it was off to the 6 station cabbing grinder he has.  Obi-wan walked me through 2 cabs, across the six stations. He then left to go watch a football game (it was a Sunday!).

Three hours later I went back inside with my 4 other finished cabs. Yes there was a flat spot in one, the slope was not even across the cab on another but I had made 6 cabs in 5 hours. Obi-wan said I did very good and the next time would be better.

Here is a picture of one of those cabs.  Obi-wan Don’s wife taught me to do wire wrapping a few weeks later so the second picture is of the final pendant.

I can now make a cab in about an hour… and now that I have all these cab’s the question was “What will I do with them all?”

laurie jane kern

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{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

Alaina April 29, 2009 at 4:20 pm

Beautiful work! I love the piece of ocean jasper you chose. I am a member of the Wisconsin Geological Society and completely relate to your love of rocks. I would love to get into the lapidary arts one day! Keep posting your new pieces!

Lynn Vernon April 4, 2009 at 12:17 pm

I love ocean jasper and you did a fantastic job. I want to learn cabbing at some point too and your blog inspires me.

teribaskett April 3, 2009 at 4:57 pm

These are GREAT! I cannot imagine taking a rough “chunk” of rock and turning it into a cab—-all the decisions you have to make to bring out the beauty of the stone….it’s quite a gift! Rock on (oops, pun intended I believe)….Teri

Beth Wicker April 3, 2009 at 5:31 am

Beautiful – keep having fun! Learning to cab is on my “to do” list!

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