Science Education Center of California

Science Education Center
of California
3001 Chapel Hill Road
Orange, CA 92867
714-292-6845
krawitz@sprynet.com

 

Science Education Center of California

Stone Carvings & Jewelry

 

 

Goblets

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Locality: Large economic deposits of rough, banded onyx are found in Pakistan and Mexico.
Composition: Onyx is a colored variety of microcrystalline calcite.

Dimensions: 4 7/8 inches tall and 3 inches wide
Price: $12 each

Comments: Each goblet is lathe carved (inside and outside) and carefully polished out of a single piece of onyx. Since the goblets are less fragile than glass and have a high heat capacity, they are ideal for keeping drinks either cold or hot for extended periods of time.

     

Goblets in Cases

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Comments: A case of goblets makes an ideal gift for weddings, holidays or other occasions. Stop by the Science Education Center to hand pick the goblets for your case.

Price: $89/case

     

Vases

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Locality: The large economic deposits of fossiliferous limestone (see upper left
photo) and rough, banded onyx are found mainly in Pakistan and to a lesser extent in Mexico.

Composition: Fossiliferous limestone is a natural aggregate of crushed and fossilized sea creatures preserved in a matrix of calcium carbonate. Onyx is a colored variety of microcrystalline calcite.

Prices:
Dimensions (height x width)
Price
Flower vase 8 inches by 3 inches $18
Flower vase 8 inches by 4 inches $24
Flower vase 10 inches by 5 inches $32
Flower vase 12 inches by 5 inches $75
Larger sizes are individually priced $99 - $600

Comments: Each stone vase is lathe carved (inside and outside) and carefully polished out of a single piece of fossiliferous limestone or banded onyx.

Background (Onyx): This colorful banded onyx is the cold water deposition of calcium carbonate saturated with iron in the oxidized (red) and reduced (green) states. The onyx is similar to stalagmites, stalactites and travertine.

Source: Larry McMaster, Geologist, MS.
  Bowling Green State University, Ohio

Background (Fossiliferous limestone): These late Mesozoic marine fossils, 240 million years old, lived in the Tethys Sea between the colliding Sub-continent of Pakistan-India and Asia. The matrix that cements the fossils together is fragments of other fossils broken up in the surf prior to its lithification into limestone.

The circular fossils with internal radiating dividers are corral. The chambered fossils are snails. The arcuate fossils are the cross-sections of clams.

Source: Larry McMaster, Geologist, MS.
  Bowling Green State University, Ohio
     

Dendritic Minerals

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Uses: The dendritic minerals shown above make excellent bookends and stand alone decorative items. When placed horizontally (base removed), the dendritic specimens can be placed under beverages and used as casters.

Background: The name dendrite comes from the Greek word dendro (tree like). The black dendritic patterns (see above photos) are usually composed of a mineral called psilomelane which forms on the bedding or fracture planes of some limestones. The psilomelane (black dendritic material that appears on and inside the limestone) is composed of a hydrous barium manganese oxide. The chemical composition of the psilomelane is BaMn+2Mn+48O16(OH)4.

Typical Sizes: 5 - 10 inches long, 5 - 8 inches high, and ½ - 1 inch thick

Prices: From $8 - $20

     

Semi-precious Jewelry

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Locality:   Polished and drilled stones from around the world
Composition:   Clear: Rock crystal
  Red: Carnelian and coral
  Blue: Amazonite and quartz
  Violet: Lapis Lazuli
  Green: Aventurine and malachite
  Golden: Tiger's Eye
  Purple: Amethyst
  Green and purple: Fluorite
Price:   Necklaces are $14 each
  Earrings are $12/pair

Comments: The Science Education Center has dozens of natural stone necklaces in stock (No glass or plastics) in the latest colors and sizes. Our earrings are carved out of fluorite and are perfectly matched.

     

Calcite & Fluorite Candle Holders

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Locality: Calcite: Zacatecas, Mexico
Fluorite: Mina Navidad, Rodeo; Durango, Mexico
Composition: Calcite: CaCO3 (Yellow)
Fluorite: CaF2 (Blue-green)
Size: 3 - 6 inches in diameter and 3 - 5 inches high.
Price: Calcite candleholders are $8
Fluorite candleholders are $14 - 16

Comments: Simple and ascetically pleasing in appearance, the candle holders are ideal for decorating tables, counter tops, furniture and the like.

     

Animal Carvings

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Locality:   Rough material comes from all over the world
Composition:   Clear: Rock crystal
Red: Carnelian and jasper
Blue: Quartz
Violet: Lapis Lazuli
Gold: Tiger's Eye
Purple: Amethyst
Green: Aventurine, malachite and zoisite
Green and purple: Fluorite
Light brown: Jasper
Yellowish green: Serpentine
Price:   All small animal carvings of the type shown above are $14 each.

Comments: Over 200 animal carvings are available at the Science Education Center, and each has been meticulously carved out of blocks of ornamental or semi-precious stone. The eight photos shown above are a representative sample of some of the variety of carvings available in the $14 price range.

     

Carvings from Gem-quality Serpentine

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Locality: The group of minerals that are collectively called serpentine comprise several polytypes and are found in many localities. To complicate matters, actinolite (nephrite variety) has a composition that is quite similar to a number of serpentine varieties.

Composition: The serpentine group is composed of hydrated magnesium silicates that are rich in iron. The composition corresponds to the following hydrous magnesium iron silicate: (Mg, Fe)3Si2O5(OH)4

Price: The serpentine carvings shown in the diagram are priced in the $40 - $50 dollar range. Larger carvings are also available and command prices in the $80 - $100+ range.

Comments: Unlike the small animal carvings, these carvings are composed of multicolored stone, which is carved to maximize the effects of the color change. The lightly colored sections of stone have been carved into the shape of an egg, while the bright reds and greens of the serpentine have been carved into the shape of an animal. The resulting creation looks like an animal hatching out of its shell. The details are so integrate that many customers assumed that the animal carvings were well preserved fossilized animals, forever preserved in stone.

     

Stone Spheres

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Locality:   Massive fluorite and agate suitable for cutting comes from many localities. Some of the most productive mining regions in the last few years have been in Brazil, Mexico and China.
Composition:   Jasper: SiO2 (Multi-colored)
Fluorite: CaF2 (Blue-Green)
Size:   1 - 3 inches in diameter
Price:   $10 - 40 each
     

Rare and Specialty Spheres

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Locality:   Scheelite: Atolia, CA
Lepidolite: Stewart Lithia Mine, Pala, CA
Obsidian: Northern California
Fluorescent material: Franklin, NJ
Cobaltite with Native silver: Cobalt, Ontario
Composition:   See fluorescent mineral section and background below
Size:   2 - 6 inches in diameter
Price:   $80 - $600 each

Comments: Several years ago the Science Education Center was able to purchase several tons of Franklin fluorescent material from a 50 year-old collection. Some of the finest pieces (suitable for sphering) were hand selected in the winter of 2003 and made into spheres. Over 40 spheres are now available and consist of franklinite, willemite, zincite, calcite and a few rare minerals. Unfortunately, this rough material will not be easily replenished and we do not have a ready supply of fluorescent mineral rough for the future.

     

Butterflies

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Locality: Our butterflies contain Brazilian agate, which has been enhanced to produce a bright bluish color.

Composition: A flexible metal frame containing slices of Brazilian agate.

Dimensions: 2.5 - 3 inches long; 2.5 to 3.5 inches wide, and about 2 inches high

Price: $11

Comments: The butterfly's flexible frame and legs allows for an ascetically pleasing display on either a horizontal or vertical surface.

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