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Stablized turqoise health hazard


#1

Please also be aware that ALL copper minerals (not just Turquoise)
require (for safety) a mask when cutting and polishing. It’s not just
the “stablilzation” minerals, but also the copper itself.

Margaret Malm


#2

I hope cal, will be the norm when working with copper. It’s as
hazardous as di-hydo-mono-oxide.

The latter being a serious solvent that we all come in contact with
daily. It has melted more things on Earth than any other chemical
known to man. We need to take precautions this chemical especially
when it comes in contact with copper. Maybe we should wrap up in haz
mat suits three stage respirators, nitrile gloves, and full face
masks. For nearly 20 years now I’ve worked with copper not taking any
precautions. My health has been effected. I no longer have low copper
levels. I no longer need my former pills of medical grade copper
prescribed by my PCP. I also have to seek more anti oxidants for that
horrible poisonous gas called oxygen. Yes oxygen is a poison.

While I’m at it I have to hide my lawn darts again. I feel a bout of
mass texting coming on while I go to the grocery store.

Tongue in cheek, dihydromonooxide is water. When you google copper
the first MSDS sheet to come up is about formulas for various types
of copper. One thing that was stressed in all my bio chem classes and
just plain organic chem classes was to ask more questions when
something popped up that was not clear. First would be if it were so
dangerous why would people have it as jewelry? Why would there be
such a following of arthritis sufferers that swear by wearing copper
bracelets (doesn’t work) We are not going to eat a hunk of copper.
Even if we did, it would pass through out systems like a kid who
ate, then pooped it out. We should be wearing safety glass no matter
what. As for breathing Three times i would say there would be
concern. 1. Polishing, the polishing compounds are what are
hazardous. 2. sanding and filing, yeah I wear regular paper formed
mask. I hate the green snot that I produce when the little particles
that are heavier than normal gets caught in my nose hairs. 3. would
be when soldering. The flux is what is of concern. Not the copper.

The turquoise I would not put a paint on type of polymer covering.
Just have it stabilized. That is Normal for soft stones. Or you can
get those clear glass covers that fit over stones put in special
jewelry frames like Rio sells. Or you could back it with devcon to
give it more rigidity. I know these suggestions will pi$$ a few off,
but if you want to use a very soft stone these are all acceptable.

Turquoise can have traces of hazardous materials in it. It depends
on location and mineral comp. Just do not fear copper. I fear texting
while driving much more after my hubby was smashed into on the freeway
Friday going to work. It was three cars in a row with the hind car
doing about 50mph no skid marks who slammed into the car behind my
hubby. Hubby has whiplash but driving a big truck, it bent the bumper
and about $2500 in damage. The others were totaled and people where
transported via ambulance to the hospital. Three of the four are
still in the hospital. Now that is something to fear, texting, not
copper.

Aggie, ranting at teenagers in Fl. texting and driving!


#3

I hope cal, will be the norm when working with copper. It’s as
hazardous as di-hydo-mono-oxide.

The latter being a serious solvent that we all come in contact with
daily.

It has melted more things on Earth than any other chemical known to
man. We need to take precautions this chemical especially when it
comes in contact with copper. Maybe we should wrap up in haz mat
suits three stage respirators, nitrile gloves, and full face masks.
For nearly 20 years now I’ve worked with copper not taking any
precautions. My health has been effected. I no longer have low copper
levels. I no longer need my former pills of medical grade copper
prescribed by my PCP. I also have to seek more anti oxidants for that
horrible poisonous gas called oxygen. Yes oxygen is a poison.

While I’m at it I have to hide my lawn darts again. I feel a bout of
mass texting coming on while I go to the grocery store.

Tongue in cheek, dihydromonooxide is water. When you google copper
the first MSDS sheet to come up is about formulas for various types
of copper. One thing that was stressed in all my bio chem classes and
just plain organic chem classes was to ask more questions when
something popped up that was not clear. First would be if it were so
dangerous why would people have it as jewelry? Why would there be
such a following of arthritis sufferers that swear by wearing copper
bracelets (doesn’t work) We are not going to eat a hunk of copper.
Even if we did, it would pass through out systems like a kid who
ate, then pooped it out. We should be wearing safety glass no matter
what. As for breathing Three times i would say there would be
concern. 1. Polishing, the polishing compounds are what are
hazardous. 2. sanding and filing, yeah I wear regular paper formed
mask. I hate the green snot that I produce when the little particles
that are heavier than normal gets caught in my nose hairs. 3. would
be when soldering. The flux is what is of concern. Not the copper.

The turquoise I would not put a paint on type of polymer covering.
Just have it stabilized. That is Normal for soft stones. Or you can
get those clear glass covers that fit over stones put in special
jewelry frames like Rio sells. Or you could back it with devcon to
give it more rigidity. I know these suggestions will pi$$ a few off,
but if you want to use a very soft stone these are all acceptable.

Turquoise can have traces of hazardous materials in it. It depends
on location and mineral comp. Just do not fear copper. I fear texting
while driving much more after my hubby was smashed into on the freeway
Friday going to work. It was three cars in a row with the hind car
doing about 50mph no skid marks who slammed into the car behind my
hubby. Hubby has whiplash but driving a big truck, it bent the bumper
and about $2500 in damage. The others were totaled and people where
transported via ambulance to the hospital. Three of the four are
still in the hospital. Now that is something to fear, texting, not
copper.

Aggie, ranting at teenagers in Fl. texting and driving!


#4
The turquoise I would not put a paint on type of polymer covering.
Just have it stabilized. That is Normal for soft stones 

It is only normal for crap stones. Let me repeat the definition of
gemstone: gemstone must be durable, rare, and beautiful. No
exceptions !

Leonid Surpin
www.studioarete.com


#5

Well here we go again, what many do is acceptable practice, NOT!

A gemstone by definition is rare, beautiful and durable.

Back in the dark ages when I began making jewellery and I had my pet
dinosaur sitting next to my bench my colleagues and I called treated
stones crap!!!

Also low value stones e.g. garnets and peridot were called semi-
precious.

Today and I quote from the Gemological Association of Australia

“Today, many gemstones are being value-enhanced [LOL] by the
application of various treatments to the gemstone or gemstone rough.”

Once it was said “You can’t turn a sows ear into a silk purse.”

Yet today modern technology allows one to turn a “sows ear into a
silk purse” or crap, aka value-enhanced.

My apologies for being quality minded but crap is crap.

And if you sell this stuff do you tell your customers the stone has
been treated? I do.

In silver jewellery, which IMHO is COSTUME jewellery, for me any
little pretty will do CZs included.

I am after a look and am only making a bit of low priced FUN costume
jewellery.

These pieces last longer and cost less than a bottle of Champagne,
which by the way only comes from Champagne in France.

I do also, when a customer requests, set natural gemstones in
silver, but that is rare and for the individual who prefers silver
over gold.

To give you an example for my wife’s birthday she (who owns quality
gold and diamonds etc.) wanted a monster sized CZ in a silver ring.
Just for fun nothing more!

And this was after she selected some beautiful NATURAL gems from the
gem dealer. They are for later and for gold.

However when I work in gold 18 karat (anything less is also crap) I
only use natural untreated My personal favourite being
party sapphires or A grade blues of which I know the provenance.
Luckily my son in law fossicks them in New England Australia.

As my favourite cartoon character says (Daria) “Its a sick sad
world!”

So bring on the justifications I really don’t care and neither do my
customers who spend serious money for natural gemstones in gold or
pocket money on silver pretties.

Richard


#6
A gemstone by definition is rare, beautiful and durable. 

And yet, people continue to like turquoise and opal, which are not
durable, and diamond, which is not rare.

Al Balmer
Pine City, NY


#7
Let me repeat the definition of gemstone: gemstone must be
durable, rare, and beautiful. No exceptions ! 

Just to be clear-- how durable is “durable”? I would be very sorry
to hear you suggest we rule out opals, whose beauty is unsurpassed. I
guess you have no use for malachite, but what about tanzanite?

I do not disagree about sandstone, but I would certainly not like to
be limited to diamonds and corundum.

Noel


#8
And yet, people continue to like turquoise and opal, which are not
durable, and diamond, which is not rare. 

The incorrect assumptions people make when they do not know the
characteristics of some quality gems. Or how to set/use such quality
gems! Opal is one such gemstone.

What people like and what is quality are often two different things.

I would think there are more burger flippers in fast food "joints"
than there are Cordon Blue chefs cooking Haute Cuisine does that make
fast food better? Note better not popular.

As Midnight Oil sang in “Power and the passion” “Its just enough to
make you want to cry… in every home a Big Mac”

Quality gems are rare.

I am fortunate to live in Australia where some quality diamonds
originate, they ARE rare and command the price. THINK PINK. THINK
MILLIONS $$$$$$

As for Opals and durability, that would depend on the setting,
especially for rings.

Australia still produces the best Opals so good that when they first
came onto the market the diamond cartels had heart failure. And spent
millions promoting diamonds over opals.

Think MONROE “Diamonds are a girls best friend” (AKA “Diamonds are a
cartels best friend” ) From “Gentlemen prefer blondes”. It was an
advertisement.

This has led to the sales of many low quality overpriced diamonds.
CARTELS!

Currently there is a plethora of tiny diamonds in jewellery. 1 carat
of diamonds for only $X. How happy would the ladies be if they knew
that 1 carat of diamonds was made up of $5 -$10 diamonds. Not so
ritzy now.

I just googled 16 pages of opal rings, not ONE was set properly so
as to PROTECT the stone.

PROPERLY SET AND CARED FOR OPALS ARE DURABLE!!!

If you don’t know how to set an opal in a ring to protect it don’t
ask.

This is where training under a master pays its dues. And some things
(not many) I keep to myself.

by doing more and more in those high kt golds, till even most of my
best affluent customers could no longer afford what I was making.

they were by definition not affluent.

The dollar value of metal content of a piece of jewellery is
secondary to the cost of a quality gem.

Now to put things into perspective, for newbies who have read this
and other gemstone posts and are thinking I will never be able to
afford those

There are many quality, beautiful, natural semi-precious stones that
can be used for great effect. They are not RARE but are beautiful and
durable, also very popular. Amethyst and Garnet are two that come to
mind. Don’t yet know how to set faceted stones, start with cabochons.
Need instructions I have made a PDF, it ain’t (anachronism not
incorrect grammar) rocket science. Email me.

TTFN
Richard


#9

TURQUOISE Some good news and some bad news

As many of you, I’m a lover of turquoise, and have been collecting
it to use in my modest making of jewelry. I try hard to buy
non-stabilized stones from North America. I happen to enjoy that the
color of the stone can gradually change unpredictably as the jewelry
is worn. I like for the stone to have its “life”.

First, the BAD news

Recently, when I saw some attractive pieces of Nacozari stones, I
asked the seller about their stabilization. A sincere and forthright
person, she replied with the following

QUOTED with her permission

Stabilization processes are very secretive, it's actually what
determines if a factory whether or not stays in business amongst
its competitors. For the most part, all turquoise are sent to
China for stabilization and cuttingdue to the cheaper rates. As
far as the few factories I have visited, all their process are
similar, a complex lipid containing epoxy is absorbed by the
turquoise under pressure. 

Basically the turquoise is left inside of vacuum chambers for
3-4 week, when the moisture is pulled out, the epoxy is applied,
then it is put into a pressure chamber for another 3 weeks for
the epoxy substance to fully absorb. Stabilizing does not only
make it harder, but it lets the stone retain its natural colors
when exposed to sunlight, oxygen, and human oils. 

So naturally, the more porous(soft) the turquoise, the more
epoxy its going to absorb, so all stabilized end results yield
to the same hardness. 

The only non-Chinese stabilization I have encountered is the
Zachary process, which essentially alters one step in the
stabilization process that only like 3 people knows how to
master in the whole world. It is a huge secret! 

The Zachary process leaves the stone looking OBVIOUSLY
stabilized and almost a wet-look! 

I knew a little about stabilized turquoise; I’ve seen stones reeking
of plastic lacquer coatings…or whatever it is…globs of it
visible even without magnification. But this story of the sucking
the life out of these beautiful sky-stones and filling them with
synthetic junk is awfully shocking. It disgusts me.

So now, the GOOD news

There is an alternative. I’ll share a secret. I’d like to recommend
you to NEVADA CASSIDYS turquoise. A small, modest family business,
they mine, cut, and polish the stones, but do -not- treat (aka
stabilize) them in any way. Their hard turquoise stones range in
colorfrom light blue to dark blue to light green to dark green to
miraculous combinations of these. The Cassidys are very skilled in
raising the stone from the mineral vein and cutting it to just the
right effect. I like the natural rugged look, but they also create
smooth shapes with high polish. And they sell lots of raw or lightly
tumbled material that you can craft yourself.

I am happy to share this source of contemporary, newly mined natural
turquoise. Check them out! And often, since the inventory changes.
Just Google the name Nevada Cassidys. Let us know what you think. My
only disclaimer here is that I’m a customer and may compete with you
forthe perfect cab.

best wishes
Barbara H. in northern CA


#10

Thanks Barbara, I couldn’t agree with you more, and while I probably
have enough turquoise I will give them a look. It is nice to know
people are out there fighting the fight for purity. I finally worked
my way to several mine owners in Nevada in about 1973, and then I
dealt with the Brown family for Morenci for several years, I just got
used to being able to buy without worry. The last couple of purchases
I have made were guaranteed natural, and I had to return them as they
were obviously treated. My apprentice however, had no problem with
it, and has even brought that Mojave plastic stuff by for me to cut.
As Stephen King would say “the world moves on”. Thomas III