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Everything posted by clay

  1. Er... Thanks for the confession Bob. I thought you were writing about the oil industry being up in arms over the pause on federal leases. I didn't realize you were referring to specific unnamed forum posters and unnamed "political motives". If you had put that out there in your original post I would have passed on by. That's not a subject I have any interest in pursuing. I'm outta here.
  2. North Dakota's oil production did slip since the collapse of oil prices made shale "oil" unprofitable. The United States is still the largest miner of petroleum products worldwide by a large margin. Since the economic collapse of the oil shale fields oil companies are staying away from those more risky investments. That collapse started long before COVID or the leasing pause and has more to do with the slim margins typical of shale deposits. When the oil price went down those shale oil miners had to stop pumping at a loss. I see where New Mexico has increased production about 10% over the last year but their rate of annual increase in production slowed way down after 2018 - the oil industry in New Mexico was already in a slowdown before COVID or the federal leasing pause. That 10% increase is to be expected since the oil companies have to pump more oil to make up for the North Dakota, Canadian and East coast U.S. shale oil shortfall. People just want their oil products and don't cut back because some fields became unprofitable. The oil has to come from somewhere. New Mexico just rose in position because the shale fields are not producing like they were previously. The executive order pausing the leasing of federal oil interests had no effect in Texas because Texas doesn't have federal lands with oil deposits. New Mexico mines half their oil deposits under private lands (east of the mountains) and the federal oil leases that are there have been in full production for several years. About a third of New Mexico's annual revenue comes from oil and gas extraction taxes. North Dakota relies just as heavily on taxes on oil and gas production on federal lands to fund their State and county governments. North Dakota sued the administration for the leasing pause along with 12 other oil producing states. I think the misconceptions here are due to the mainstream press trying to make drama around an issue in an industry few in their profession understand. I didn't see any claims that the leasing pause would cause disruption within the oil/gas trade but if you watch TV "news" it sure seemed they were trying to push that idea. In any case none of this matters today. The lease pause was ordered in January and it was lifted by the courts in June. New oil leases are now being offered by the BLM. Less than six months of a pause in the federal oil leasing system didn't cause much disruption at all in the oil industry but it sure gave those CNN and FOX news watchers something to get excited about.
  3. Appears to have gas bubbles and holes. Looks like man made glass from a fire to me.
  4. I don't know what pets you have in your room. I'm just trying to inject some facts into the discussion. Here's another fact for you. The U.S. does not, and never has, charged royalties on locatable mineral extraction. There is a long legal and legislative history on that subject of which you are obviously unaware. You have not been a public land owner since 1976. You have no royalties no matter how many times you repeat that's what you want.
  5. I think Alaskans would argue with you about the land ownership thing. The State of Alaska has made it clear they do not appreciate the Federal gov acting as if they should have the final say on what happens on State owned land. They have vigorously objected to the actions of the EPA and Corps in the press and in the courts. The EPA had already made their final approval before Trump Jr. stuck his finger in the pie. The Corps had approved the mine except to demand a quid pro quo mitigation plan for areas not affected by the mine. The federal courts have said that those demands are illegal but I'm guessing that until the courts hear the Pebble case about the mitigation the press will continue to pretend the environmental assessment is the reason the mine is not permitted. If you want royalties from the Pebble project you will need to become an Alaskan citizen, get the mine approved and wait for your annual payment just like the rest of the Alaskan citizens. It would be foolish to expect royalties for the federal gov on lands that are not owned by them. You might as well expect royalties from Mexico or China.
  6. Seems everyone is all over the place on this Pebble mine thing. Some facts: 1. The Pebble project is on State and Native lands. There are no federal lands, public lands or federal mining claims involved in the Pebble project. 2. The Pebble mine is already agreed to and permitted by the State and welcomed by many Native corporations. The State and natives will receive considerable royalties, taxes, infrastructure improvements and employment should the feds ever complete the permitting process. I don't know that Bristol Bay is endangered by this proposed mine. It seems the gov doesn't know either. The EPA approved the permit but the Corps reversed their original decision last year and added extra conditions to approve the permit. Word is that happened because the Trump Jr. boy was against it. Now they are trying to reclassify Bristol Bay so if the permit is eventually approved the mine still can't be built. Problem with that is it's going to affect the fishing rights in the Bay. There are always consequences. It's a big mess all the way around. So what's at stake that this one mine has caused so much ruckus? 70 million tons of gold, molybdenum and copper ore a year. Probably the largest gold deposit in the world. That ain't just pebbles.
  7. It does kind of look like a fungus. Fossilized? I've never heard of that happening. Doesn't mean it hasn't but I don't think it's the obvious explanation for your perception of a "fossilized tree fungus or mushroom". It happens with clouds and tree trunks and rocks and it's called Pareidolia. It makes the world more fun and interesting and as far as I can tell all humans have experienced it including myself just now.
  8. That would be great to identify minerals Bill. Minerals can be positively identified by doing some pretty simple tests. Any given mineral will always test the same no matter where it was found. Minerals are very well defined. Bob knows this stuff well so he would be a good choice to make that post if he's so inclined. Rocks on the other hand can not be positively identified by simple tests. Rocks are composed of minerals but often those minerals are "included" and do not help with a positive identification of a rock. Although knowing the specific gravity and hardness of a rock can help narrow down what type of rock might be involved those tests naturally produce very different results often within each rock itself. Mineral test results do not vary for any particular mineral but the same type of rock will almost always have very different test results. So even though a mineral specimen may appear to be the mineral hematite and a hardness, specific gravity and streak test shows that it is indeed hematite a rock that appears to visually resemble hematite but fails one or more tests for hematite only demonstrates that it is not hematite and gives us no reliable information about what the rock actually is because rocks do not have defined repeatable tests to establish the rock type. Streak, hardness and specific gravity do not provide positive identification of rocks because they are not consistent in rocks where in minerals they are consistent. Bob shows some schist in his example. Schist is a rock that varies in hardness between talc and garnet depending on how it was formed and how far it's eroded both chemically and physically. It comes in every color of the rainbow and may contain many different combinations of minerals that can only be generally grouped into classes of combination of minerals. Schist rock specimens will vary from location to location even within the same formation. Some other very common rock types are graywacke, basalt and grabbo, none of which can be defined by any of the common mineral tests. An experienced rock collector can often pinpoint the location and type of an unusual or collectable rock by it's appearance alone. Certain well known jasper and agate (rock)deposits come to mind like Biggs Jasper or Lake Superior Agate, I'm sure you can think of others, but this is more the function of a visual ID associated with long experience rather than a test that could provide a positive ID. There's nothing wrong with describing rocks by texture, color, density and hardness to help viewers understand what they are seeing in a picture, any info helps in this situation but it's a hopeless task to try to positively identify a rock by these common mineral tests. So with rocks we are left to explain them as defined by their method of formation and the chemistry present when they were formed. A properly used XRF can provide valuable information about the rocks chemistry and knowing the way the local base rocks were geologically formed can help identify which basic type of rock is being tested. I too think that a pinned post defining how to test for mineral IDs would be a big help but lets not confuse the issue by including "tests" for rocks.
  9. I've collected very similar material Bob. Most was found on the higher benches on the north side of the Pecos between El Cerrito and Villa Nueva and one small piece further upriver near Sena and a nice specimen near Tommy's place in Ribera. The material all appears to be water worn. I believe the schist there is in the Khondalite group which often includes Sillimanite mineral. Your piece is very attractive and bluer than most of the material I collected. I have found some deep green translucent pieces as well. I believe the crystal sprays are Sillimanite but the base material seems to include several other interesting minerals that I have yet to positively identify.
  10. Wow, did they really film this opal by putting it on the asphalt on a busy street at night? I can hear the cars passing by. The opal shown in the video is not a fire opal. By definition fire opals have a red/yellow/orange base color. When an opal has a play of color, as the opal you show does, the proper name would be precious opal. A true fire opal, like the one Bill posted, when it has a play of color is known as a precious fire opal. Nomenclature aside the opal in the video does appear to be of volcanic origin and was formed in a gray(?) rhyolite. It hard to tell in the video. The Mexican fire opals are found in a pinkish rhyolite. Rhyolite is composed of several different minerals and those minerals can be altered quite a bit before they are opalized. The opal you show is bedded in porphyritic rhyolite with visible crystallization. The "wood" you see in the video is probably just an altered mineral crystal phenocryst that was later opalized. My guess, just looking at the general form and color, would be either small crystals of Sanidine (a high temperature potassium feldspar common to rhyolite), a biotite mica book viewed from the edge (also common to rhyolite) or a limonite psuedomorph. And guess is about all we can do with a photograph. Without destroying the opal to expose the "wood" to analysis we are left to our imaginations. If the opal came from a well known area where these are common inclusions there is some possibility that a mineralogist has researched this in the past but without more information about the locality and geology of the deposit even tracking down that possibility is a wild goose chase.
  11. Reading is fundamental BMc. You got off on a tangent, I never wrote that the GIA does appraisals. It was you in your first post in this thread that attempted to link the GIA to appraisals. ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Once again - the GIA doesn't do appraisals. Red herring. GIA training on gem assessment and ethics is very thorough despite what three ignorant guys on an internet forum wrote about non existent appraisals in 2005. The reason I suggest going to a GIA certified gemologist jeweler is because they will know how to positively identify a natural sapphire, even if they did work in a Taco stand. Thanks for sharing your thoughts.
  12. Not sure where your experience comes from. The GIA lab has published flat fees that are charged by the size of the stone. A sapphire of this size costs around $100 for a full assessment and insurance appraisal. In my experience GIA trained gemologists working within an established manufacturing jeweler will often give you a quick verbal assessment of value for free. It's just good business. I would stay far away from scammers charging for gem appraisals based on the appraised value. That's a conflict of interest and is not ethical. GIA is very clear on this point in their training. Maybe you could try a different, more ethical, jeweler next time?
  13. There are probably a dozen GIA certified gemologists near you Mitchel. I'd try a trained expert before I'd run it by the guy who used to work at the Taco stand.
  14. It's natural. The wobbly rays of the star are a natural and common flaw from when the crystal formed. It lowers the value some of course so it's not a feature you will find on man made sapphires. It also has fairly broad rays which indicates larger rutile inclusions, a finer star is more valuable. The ring mount looks like it's Thai manufacture, if so the smaller stones are probably zircons.
  15. Nice find! If the color is natural you've got a real winner Mitchel. Cornflower blue is the most favored color. I think you got low balled on the value.
  16. I'm not seeing any fully defined crystal forms in your rock. That knowledge actually helps with an ID for the rock habit but it doesn't identify any particular mineral by crystal structure. If the gemologist has an XRF gun that detects amphibole group mineral elements (Calcium, Magnesium, Aluminum or Iron, Sulfur and Silica) it would be a quick test. I doubt the stone has much monetary value but curiosity can seldom be satisfied for an immediate profit. Knowledge on the other hand profits the possessor for life. Go for it if you really want to know. Or not.
  17. Yes most of the material you will find in that region was transported there with the movement of the ice shield. But not all the good material comes from ice movement there is some very rich and interesting local geology as well. The copper and iron deposits are well known but there are also quite a few gold and industrial mineral mines as well. There are native Tremolite deposits also, Near Little Chicago in Wisconsin there is a Jade deposit known as Little Chicago Nephrite. The Jade from Little Chicago has been mined and sold commercially. Like the other Nephrite Jade deposits it is composed mainly of Tremolite. The Michigan Basin Deep Drill Hole north of Lansing discovered native Tremolite deposits in 1975. Ontario is full of native Tremolite occurrences particularly in the Haliburton County / Kawartha Lakes region. Northern New York has several well known Tremolite deposits. Your soap stone ball is composed, in part, of Tremolite. Lake Erie is surrounded on three sides by native Tremolite deposts This Actinolite - Tremolite mineral series forms the rocks that are commonly known as "asbestos", "nephrite jade" and "serpentine" as well as several others. They are an important part of the Amphibole group of minerals. The Canadian shield is rich in Amphibole minerals. I would honestly be surprised if you didn't occasionally find Tremolite based rocks on the north shore of Lake Erie. Or not.
  18. What you have is a rock. Rocks are composed of different minerals either in conglomerate or combination. Rocks are defined by the minerals they are composed of but they are not susceptible to hardness or specific gravity testing as minerals are. From the information and pictures you have provided my experience tells me the main components of your rock are probably members of the actinolite - tremolite series. Hardness 5-6 SG ~3. Or not.
  19. Most old dimes fit that description Torque. For that matter most metals fit that description. What makes you think this particular dime is composed of platinum? Welcome to the forum Torque.
  20. You mean "Dakota Slim" is your real name?
  21. Ahhh ... it might be a signed one then! In a strange twist of fate the one's signed by Bunk are actually worth less than a regular old beat up one. The previous owner probably couldn't sell it without the cover up paint job. I think your price is fine if you have proof it's an unsigned original.
  22. Looks like new. Is it the original collectable hand signed high speed version?
  23. Yeah I know those guys. They can spit ... so there's something. I'll bet the new meteorite hunting drone ends up coming back over and over again with bits of Hematite and Basalt insisting they are meteorites from mars. ...
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