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Indonesian Opal - A Field Report By Paul Sedawie
印尼蛋白石 - 保罗塞达维的实地报告
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Indonesian opal - a report by Paul SedawieI visited a new opal mine in Banten which is out from Jakarta, Indonesia. Opal was discovered here in 1995 and there have been various levels of production since then.

There are three main areas where the new Opal can be found.

  • 1.Cikole - Maja 
  • 2.Rangkas - Bitung 
  • 3.Cikole

The Cikole area has a lot of wood fossil. At present there may be thirty crews who are working and they do seem to move around and not make long drives. The first mine I visited was a shallow mine of only 12 meters. It is in a high rainfall area so most of the mining is carried out in the dry season which is from July onwards. The top sides of the mine were supported with bamboo which didn’t look strong to me and the cane ladder was not wide enough for one of my feet.

Indonesian opal mine

bamboo ladder down an indonesian opal mine

The walls were saturated with water and there was nearly a stream running at the base of the shaft. I was then told that 12 miners died last year due to collapsing walls. There is no propping or supporting the walls which are very moist even deep inside the mine. The soil is a heavy, sticky kaolinite clay with a grey to brown appearance with black like charcoal spots all through it. They follow the slides in the ground which tend to form opal.

inside the indonesian opal mine

There seems to be an abundance of wood fossil opal which is coal black in colour. Some natural opal rough did dry out quicker after wetting them which is quite unusual because I am used to working with Lightning Ridge material. The wood fossil seemed stable but the crystals were very hydrophane. The material seems brittle like yowah stones and it is softer to cut compared to Ridge material. There is a jewellery market in Jakarta where miners can sell their production.

Observed Opal Treatments

There are large slabs of black potch which are displayed but they are soaked in glycerine. Even large black rubs are soaked in it. It seems that this is a normal practise to soak most material. There are crude jewellery pieces made with base metals and these too have been soaked in baby oil. Even good stones have baby oil on them and I put this down to the fact that the finish isn’t commercial so the oil hides any pits, scratches etc. There is a heating treatment for wood fossils in which they wrap the specimen in foil and heat it with oil and sand and mix it up. The success rate is not very high but they do get a nice surprise with some material. Some of the potch has the clay strongly attached to it and the heat does remove it.

indonesian opal miners

At present I feel that the oil brings the opal colour to life and resin is added so it keeps its polish. The cutting skills of the locals isn’t good and I feel they may use to oil and resin to get a finish. I will be testing some wood fossils in a vibrating tumbler to get a better permanent finish. Another treatment is called natural heat. This is when a stone is placed in water and left in the sun with nothing else for a week.

They say it improves the darkness of the stone but I have cut some in two and can’t see any difference inside. There are some stunning opalized wood fossils making great collector pieces. Some of the opalized wood makes great stones. This opal likes strong in sunlight and can look stunning but in dim light there is very little colour play. Stones with red in them are quite common but most will be distant and a bit leady.

indonesian opal - a report by paul sedawie

Conculsions

Still a great experience for a hobby cutter to cut a red on black stone. I did see one very striking stone 7 years old that was red and impressive but I didn’t see it in low light. Its base was coal black.

Most of the rough I saw would be classified as N1 to N3 but the brightness level in normal lightning is distant /dull. There is definitely a market for this Opal. I suspect some may be hydrophane and some rough dries out quickly. The crystals look interesting but I only saw a few crystal stones which were reported to be a few years old and stable.

I have sent samples to a renowned scientist who specializes in opal to test these sample and will add to this report. Stay tune.

Buy Your Own Piece Of Indonesian Opal

印度尼西亚蛋白石 - 保罗塞达维报道我参观了位于印度尼西亚雅加达的万丹新的蛋白石矿。 Opal于1995年在这里被发现,从那时起生产的水平各不相同。

有三个主要区域可以找到新的蛋白石。

  • 1.Cikole - Maja
  • 2.Rangkas - Bitung
  • 3.Cikole

Cikole地区有很多木化石。目前可能有三十名工作人员正在工作,他们似乎确实四处走动,而不是长途驾驶。我访问的第一个矿井是一个只有12米的浅矿。它的降雨量很大,因此大部分采矿都是在7月份开始的旱季进行的。矿井的顶部用竹子支撑,对我来说看起来不那么强壮,而且我的一只脚的拐杖梯子不够宽。

印度尼西亚蛋白石矿

印度尼西亚蛋白石矿下的竹梯

墙壁被水饱和,在井底部几乎有一条溪流。然后我被告知,由于墙壁倒塌,去年有12名矿工死亡。没有支撑或支撑在矿井内部非常潮湿的墙壁。土壤是一种重的,粘稠的高岭石粘土,灰色到棕色的外观,黑色的木炭斑点。他们沿着地面上的滑梯行进,这些滑梯往往会形成蛋白石。

在印尼的蛋白石矿里面

似乎有大量的木质化石蛋白石是煤黑色的。一些天然蛋白石粗糙在润湿之后会更快干透,这是非常不寻常的,因为我习惯使用Lightning Ridge材料。木化石似乎很稳定,但晶体是非常氢化的。这种材料看起来像yowah石头一样脆,与Ridge材料相比,它的切割更柔软。雅加达有一个珠宝市场,矿工可以在那里出售他们的产品。

观察到的蛋白石治疗

有大块的黑色potch,但它们浸泡在甘油中。即使是大的黑色摩擦也浸泡在里面。这似乎是浸泡大多数材料的正常做法。有贱金属制成的原始珠宝首饰,这些首饰也浸泡在婴儿油中。即使是好的宝石上也有婴儿油,我还是认为表面没有商品,因此油会隐藏任何凹坑,划痕等。对木材化石进行加热处理,然后用铝箔包裹样品。用油和沙子加热并混合。成功率不是很高,但他们确实对一些材料感到惊喜。一些potch的粘土强烈附着在它上面,热量确实将它除去。

印尼的蛋白石矿工

目前我觉得油会使蛋白石颜色变为生命,并添加树脂以保持其抛光。当地人的切割技术不好,我觉得他们可能会用油和树脂来完成。我将用振动滚筒测试一些木质化石,以获得更好的永久性效果。另一种治疗方法称为自然热。这是一块石头被放置在水中并在阳光下留下一周没有别的东西。

他们说它改善了石头的黑暗,但我已经削减了一些,并且内部看不到任何差异。有一些令人惊叹的乳白色木化石制作伟大的收藏品。一些乳白色木材制成了巨大的宝石。这种蛋白石在阳光下看起来很强,看起来很棒,但在昏暗的光线下,它的色彩很少。其中红色的石头很常见,但大多数都是遥远的,有点带头。

印度尼西亚蛋白石 - 保罗·塞达维报道

Conculsions

对于业余爱好切割机来说,在黑色的石头上切割红色仍然是一种很棒的体验。我确实看到一块7岁的非常引人注目的石头,红色而令人印象深刻,但我在低光下看不到它。它的基础是煤炭黑。

我看到的大部分粗糙都被归类为N1到N3,但正常闪电中的亮度水平是遥远/暗淡的。这款蛋白石绝对有市场。我怀疑有些可能是氢化物,有些粗糙的干燥很快。这些水晶看起来很有趣,但我只看到了一些据说有几年历史且稳定的水晶石。

我已经将样品寄给了一位专门研究蛋白石的着名科学家来测试这些样品,并将添加到本报告中。保持调整。

买自己的印尼蛋白石片

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注释

Saragurihiro4782

Hi Paul,
Thanks for your report about Indonesian opal in detail.
I also want to know the response of the scientist.

29th Dec 2018
Opalcollector41

What did the scientist say about the samples you sent

15th Nov 2018
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