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Following the Pattern

After cleaning the sludge from my 18” saw I got back to slabbing some older pieces of Brazilian Agate that had been in my pile of rocks since I moved into the Gold Country about 10 years ago. I noticed a 7” by 5” Brazilian Agate that I had cut a face onto before I moved. The face looked a bit dull, but there was a black pattern that piqued my curiosity. I mounted it in my saw and started slabbing. After I got the second slab off the rock, I compared it with the first slab and there was an interesting difference. The slab that had been exposed to the bright sun and summer heat for many years had a reddish-brown layer that differed from all the remaining slabs. The layer is a definite color change, not just dirt or debris on the surface. I’m going to experiment with some heat treating on a piece of this material in the near future.

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