A ball or nodule of rhombohedral Arsenic crystals from this famed Japanese locality. In fine condition on all sides, this is not beautiful to many people but these balls are considered to be the world's best Arsenic crystals, loved by collectors of native element crystals. This specimen is a bit sharper than average, fairly sizable (the largest are only a few MM larger) and has a good color and luster, many are very dull or have a whitish coating.
Realgar - single crystal
Shimen (Jiepiayu) Mine, Shimen County, Changde Prefecture
2.2 x 1.1 x .6 CM (thumbnail)
A bright red crystal that is translucent to transparent, well-formed and distinctly striated. This crystal was mined in 2003, it has been stored in the dark so is fresh and bright. A few small rough spots are to be mentioned but overall this is in fine shape, well-terminated and a choice thumbnail. When these were found they were certainly the best Realgars available at that time, and are still about as fine as can be seen. Of special note, these Hunan Realgars seemed to keep their color and luster better than specimens from other localities.
A multi-specie thumbnail from Yaogangxian. Very sharp, transparent Fluorites are shot full of black to metallic Bismuthinite needle sprays. The Fluorites are clustered on a single clear Quartz crystal with some associated Siderite. In perfect condition by naked eye a good loupe finds only microscopic bruising. The Fluorites have a slight color zoning and again with magnification a few loops of slender Bismuthinites coils are seen inside. Hard to photograph, this is much better in person.
Yaogangxian Mine, Yizhang County, Chenzhou Pref.
3.1 x 2.6 x 1.5 CM (small miniature/ large thumbnail (toenail))
A super bright "gun metal" luster Bournonite crystal which is doubly terminated. Some of the faces are perfectly smooth mirror-like while other are striated. From the Yaogangxian Mine which had the reputation for providing more fine Bournonite than the rest of the world's localities together. Before these finds this was a rather rare and sought after specie. There seems to be no twinning on this crystal which is unusual for Bournonite which is almost always twinned. Displays well as seen, there are some small chips on the terminations and the back is contacted but not damaged. While not perfect this is far better than 99.9 percent of these, and the rough areas are not excessive. As a whole Bournonites are notoriously brittle and most often incomplete.
Sharp and transparent Calcites well-exposed and perched on matrix. A perfect, undamaged thumbnail with an attractive lemon-yellow color and glassy luster. From the Shimen Mine (Hunan, China) we have seen very few thumbnail Calcites from this locality, most are quite large. The mine is reported to be closed now but it was at one time an incredible source. Vintage about 2003.
N Chwaning II Mine, Kalahari Manganese Filed
Northern Cape Province,
9 x 7.4 x 2.3 CM (cabinet)
An excellent cabinet sized Rhodochrosite that is of an unusual habit for N'Chwaning. Rhodo crystals fully cover the face of this large plate of Manganite matrix. From the display side just a sliver of the underlying black Manganite crystals can be seen. The hundreds of tiny sparkling Rhodochrosite crystals are sharp transparent scalenohedra most being free standing when seen under magnification. In excellent condition, there is no damage found by naked eye and under magnification only micro bruises on edges can be found with some difficulty. The sparkling luster and undulating surface make an attractive cabinet sized specimen from this famed mine. The color is not the intense red that some N'Chwaning Rhodos have but is a good red to pink-rose hue. This is also not a 5 figure specimen it is a very good value for a sizable, undamaged Rhodo from this famed, classic locale.
3 x 2.6 x2.2 CM (thumbnail)
A cluster of well-defined Hydrocerussite from Tsumeb. These are coatings and replacements of the original Cerussite so are technically pseudomorphs though there may be some un-altered Cerussite deep inside the crystals. In excellent condition the luster is a pearly to dull powdery-white that is typical of the specie. Although this is not typically a "pretty" mineral, the form of this piece is a very attractive presentation of a rather rare mineral. An excellent Tsumeb piece that is just small enough to be a legitimate thumbnail. In remarkable condition, all of the main free standing crystals are undamaged on all sides, this ranks as a competition grade specimen.
Barite on Rhodochrosite
Cerro Warihuyn - Miraflores, Huamalies Prov.
3.7 x 2.1 x 1.7 CM (miniature)
Thin glass-clear undamaged Barite crystals on a minimal matrix of Rhodochrosite and tiny Barites. A very clean and attractive small miniature with no damage. The Cerro Warihuyn find of Barites is simply incredible, there have been many choice pieces in several habits and colors. This specimen is a very pale yellow-green hue in the Barites which are perfectly transparent and seem almost colorless in person. These Barites are still an excellent value for quality and esthetics at a reasonable cost.