David, the gentleman I work with, has recently created a mounting
for a piece of dark opal. It is a very attractive piece of black
opal, and David assumed it was a piece he had sold the client, as
she has purchased several opals from us in the past. After further
checking, we find that she purchased it for about $200.00 on a
cruise. We would have estimated the value to be much higher, based
on visual observation. The stone weighs 1.02 carats. It has a dark
brown body color, with very good play of color- large, distinct
flashes of red and green.
Here is the weird part: when David got the stone wet during cleaning
of the finished piece, it turned very dark and lost its play of
color. We had the ring soaking in warm ultrasonic solution, though
the ultrasound was not running. The stone looked dark when we dried
it off, but then returned to its original appearance within
approximately 5 minutes. It also seems softer than regular opal,
with the finish being disturbed even with routine, careful polishing
of the metal around it. We have never seen or heard of anything like
this. Have any of you?
We hope you had a great holiday.
Take care and keep in touch.
david lee jeweler
Golden Touch Jewelry
Mason City, Iowa