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Chrisrobe

Is this a meteorite?

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Hello fellas/ladies

real swell to meet ya, my colleague found this in the middle of a field whilst walking his doggy. Northern England.

its extremely magnetic and heavy. Approx 100mm x 50mm x 50mm at its peaks.

i tried to identify it using tips on the internet , I’m hoping someone here may be able to identify.

i was going to grind into it a little bit to see what secrets it’s hiding, but don’t want to potentially make it less valuable.

light in room doesn’t do pictures much justice it but I would describe it as black, smooth and starting to rust every so slightly in spots

 

thanks fellas 

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2 minutes ago, fredmason said:

probably not

What would you suggest it is? 

It bears all the Hall marks of a meteorite , no? 

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Magnetite. Pull up images of magnetite and compare photos. Research where the source of iron is located in the district where it was found. Consult a geologic map of the area and locate the iron dikes in that region. This forum has images of magnetite that you can view using the search box. 

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23 minutes ago, Chrisrobe said:

What would you suggest it is? 

It bears all the Hall marks of a meteorite , no? 

Magnetite.

 

IRON.PNG.4.PNG

IRON-2.PNG

MAGNETITE.PNG

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14 minutes ago, BMc said:

Magnetite.

 

IRON.PNG.4.PNG

IRON-2.PNG

MAGNETITE.PNG

It doesn’t look like magnetite though, and what would magnetite be doing in the middle of a field? 

Also, the one I have is very smooth and has like a thick black crust to it. The magnetite looks quite porousey.

 

is there a definitive test I can do? Because it passes all of the ones I can find on the internet. 

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19 minutes ago, BMc said:

Magnetite.

 

IRON.PNG.4.PNG

IRON-2.PNG

MAGNETITE.PNG

I also sanded a very small piece with an angle grinder. It came up pure metal.

would magnetite do this? Because it seems magnetite would just crumble.

 

effectivley like sanding mild steel to expose the nice shiny steel

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Not sure why being in the middle of a field would disqualify it from being magnetite. Wonder what the field looked like millions of years ago? Cut a window on it to examine the inside.

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10 minutes ago, BMc said:

Not sure why being in the middle of a field would disqualify it from being magnetite. Wonder what the field looked like millions of years ago? Cut a window on it to examine the inside.

To be laid on top of grass in the middle of a field, seemed odd to me. I guess I figured magnetite would be near more rocky terrain. But you’re the expert.

it seems to be solid iron, from the small piece I cut. Very indicative of sanding mild steel. Would magnetite act like this? I assume magnetite would need to be smeltedto extract it’s metal properties. This particular piece already seems to be solid iron.

Edited by Chrisrobe

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14 minutes ago, Chrisrobe said:

I also sanded a very small piece with an angle grinder. It came up pure metal.

would magnetite do this? Because it seems magnetite would just crumble.

 

effectivley like sanding mild steel to expose the nice shiny steel

You might post photos of the exposed "nice shiny steel" to see if any of the met guys on the forum want to render an opinion for you.

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4 minutes ago, BMc said:

You might post photos of the exposed "nice shiny steel" to see if any of the met guys on the forum want to render an opinion for you.

I’m reluctantly to cut too much into it, it’s not exactly big to begin with.

i work in a metal shop so I’m pretty good at identifying metal. I’m not sure if you’ve handled magnetite but how does it cut? What does the Center look like because I can’t seem to find pictures on the internet, and ones I have seem to be black crystaly material. Which is definitley not what this is. 

If it is solid metal, what would you suggest it is ?

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1 minute ago, Chrisrobe said:

To be laid on top of grass in the middle of a field, seemed odd to me. I guess I figured magnetite would be near more rocky terrain. But you’re the expert.

it seems to be solid iron, from the small piece I cut. Very indicative of sanding mild steel. Would magnetite act like this? I assume magnetite would need to be smeltedto extract it’s metal properties. This particular piece already seems to be solid iron.

Not an expert. I have found a good deal of Magnetite, some in mountainous areas, some in flat sagebrush country. I've never sanded, cut or polished any. It tends to erode into black sand over (eons) of time. 

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1 minute ago, BMc said:

Not an expert. I have found a good deal of Magnetite, some in mountainous areas, some in flat sagebrush country. I've never sanded, cut or polished any. It tends to erode into black sand over (eons) of time. 

Yeah that’s what I figured. Magnetite seems to be more of a crystallised material than solid iron. I figured it would turn to dust if I cut into/sanded it. Purely from pictures.

I appreciate the help. I’m just pretty reluctant to throw this away on ‘probably not’ advice. I’d like to do a little more digging but I’m not sure where to start.

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1 hour ago, Chrisrobe said:

What would you suggest it is? 

It bears all the Hall marks of a meteorite , no? 

To the trained eye the looks alone be are enough to dismiss it as a potential met, many terrestrial rocks can check many of the boxes for someone with less experience. Though looks alone can be tricky to explain and convey to others why it doesn’t look like a meteorite at all. It doesn’t look like a meteorite at all. Maybe it is iron ore, that would explain how dense it is and how it would attract a magnet. File a window in it man, it won’t detract from the value because if it was a met which it’s not it is not particularly attractive. Anyways the only way to authenticate if it’s truly a met is to cut it open and perform tests which is done to all classified Mets so don’t be afraid to alter the material cut that thing open polish it and post pics, so far no good so you have nothing to loose I can assure you of that. 

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11 minutes ago, Rocky said:

To the trained eye the looks alone be are enough to dismiss it as a potential met, many terrestrial rocks can check many of the boxes for someone with less experience. Though looks alone can be tricky to explain and convey to others why it doesn’t look like a meteorite at all. It doesn’t look like a meteorite at all. Maybe it is iron ore, that would explain how dense it is and how it would attract a magnet. File a window in it man, it won’t detract from the value because if it was a met which it’s not it is not particularly attractive. Anyways the only way to authenticate if it’s truly a met is to cut it open and perform tests which is done to all classified Mets so don’t be afraid to alter the material cut that thing open polish it and post pics, so far no good so you have nothing to loose I can assure you of that. 

Thanks friend. Appreciate the advice. I’ll cut into it tommorow and see what I find x 

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41 minutes ago, Rocky said:

To the trained eye the looks alone be are enough to dismiss it as a potential met, many terrestrial rocks can check many of the boxes for someone with less experience. Though looks alone can be tricky to explain and convey to others why it doesn’t look like a meteorite at all. It doesn’t look like a meteorite at all. Maybe it is iron ore, that would explain how dense it is and how it would attract a magnet. File a window in it man, it won’t detract from the value because if it was a met which it’s not it is not particularly attractive. Anyways the only way to authenticate if it’s truly a met is to cut it open and perform tests which is done to all classified Mets so don’t be afraid to alter the material cut that thing open polish it and post pics, so far no good so you have nothing to loose I can assure you of that. 

One quick question. Lets say it is a meteorite. What value would you place on it? X 

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8 minutes ago, Chrisrobe said:

One quick question. Lets say it is a meteorite. What value would you place on it? X 

If it’s 400g@ .50c per gram that would be $200. Bare bones. But it doesn’t appear to be one.

 

Edited by Rocky

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Just now, Rocky said:

If it’s 400g@ .50c per gram that would be $200. Bare bones 

 

Ah. Cool. I wouldn’t sell anyway. Mantel piece job. Just interested x 

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12 hours ago, Rocky said:

If it’s 400g@ .50c per gram that would be $200. Bare bones. But it doesn’t appear to be one.

 

I cut into it. Took two grinding discs. I expected it to breeze through it but it was effectively like cutting 50mm steel. 

When I undid the vice I dropped it and bit broke off, so weirdly it’s brittle too. Like solid brittle metal. But it exposed a little middle bit. I’ll upload pictures 

its also red hot. Hasn’t cooled down. 

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1 hour ago, Chrisrobe said:

I cut into it. Took two grinding discs. I expected it to breeze through it but it was effectively like cutting 50mm steel. 

When I undid the vice I dropped it and bit broke off, so weirdly it’s brittle too. Like solid brittle metal. But it exposed a little middle bit. I’ll upload pictures 

its also red hot. Hasn’t cooled down. 

A3C699D8-D4E9-4F1E-ABE2-E218B33632CD.jpeg

8D224913-9366-409D-88B5-CF1F379543D3.jpeg

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Now you should polish the saw face and read online how to etch it and see if it reveals a Widmanstätten pattern. These lines in the photo have me curious. Polish like mirror and etch man, do waste time, but be safe and wear proper PPE while you do it.

13ABBFB3-DBB8-4959-A277-19AE89E94CEB.jpeg

Edited by Rocky

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If you want to be realistic about it, now that's its cut contact a lab or university that will test it for you, then you will have an answer.
You can't put a value on something until you know what it is.

 

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19 minutes ago, frank c said:

If you want to be realistic about it, now that's its cut contact a lab or university that will test it for you, then you will have an answer.
You can't put a value on something until you know what it is.

 

 

2 hours ago, Rocky said:

Now you should polish the saw face and read online how to etch it and see if it reveals a Widmanstätten pattern. These lines in the photo have me curious. Polish like mirror and etch man, do waste time, but be safe and wear proper PPE while you do it.

13ABBFB3-DBB8-4959-A277-19AE89E94CEB.jpeg

Thanks friends

gonna mirror finish it and etch it. See what happens.

ill be in touch when it’s done x

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20 hours ago, Chrisrobe said:

I also sanded a very small piece with an angle grinder. It came up pure metal.

would magnetite do this? Because it seems magnetite would just crumble.

 

effectivley like sanding mild steel to expose the nice shiny steel

Chris,

Magnetite and all other terrestrial irons are sub-metallic. Like graphite. Not metallic like your specimen. Magnetite is mineral (ferric/ferrous) and yours is free metal (ferrous).This is obviously not magnetite as your observations indicated. 

The surface and shape do not resemble an iron meteorite. The surface suggests rust ablation and the shape suggests an artifact. Iron meteorites just don't look like that with smooth flowing edges and thickness planes.

A simple XRF test for nickel on a small window would be an appropriate step after filing a window and observing the color of the filings. Please remember most tramp metal contains nickel as an alloy and the presence of Ni in tramp steel does not mean it is a meteorite. A Ni test is fairly definitive for a stone containing flecks of metal. But not an iron.

A Widmanstatten pattern is created when metal took thousands of years to cool a single degree. It does not take more than a few hundred degrees to alter that and anneal the metal. Meteorites are cut very slowly with lots of fluid to prevent that.

I am no expert but I am certain that the heat created by hacking a piece off with an abrasive disk would not only affect the crystal arrangement of the metal but also the value if it was indeed a meteorite. This specimen obviously got very hot and lots of surface was exposed to an abrasive wheel. That ain't good brother.

Bob

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Hi there,

Terrestrial stone, such as ironstone or load stone, IMO. If it was an iron from space it wouldn't be as angular as it is. Most irons that land on Earth aren't flat on almost all sides but have the characteristic "thumb" prints. Did you do a streak test as well? What color was the streak? Opinions are like belly buttons, everyone has one, but you are learning.

Keep looking down, Jayray.

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1 hour ago, Bedrock Bob said:

 

Chris,

Magnetite and all other terrestrial irons are sub-metallic. Like graphite. Not metallic like your specimen. Magnetite is mineral (ferric/ferrous) and yours is free metal (ferrous).This is obviously not magnetite as your observations indicated. 

The surface and shape do not resemble an iron meteorite. The surface suggests rust ablation and the shape suggests an artifact. Iron meteorites just don't look like that with smooth flowing edges and thickness planes.

A simple XRF test for nickel on a small window would be an appropriate step after filing a window and observing the color of the filings. Please remember most tramp metal contains nickel as an alloy and the presence of Ni in tramp steel does not mean it is a meteorite. A Ni test is fairly definitive for a stone containing flecks of metal. But not an iron.

A Widmanstatten pattern is created when metal took thousands of years to cool a single degree. It does not take more than a few hundred degrees to alter that and anneal the metal. Meteorites are cut very slowly with lots of fluid to prevent that.

I am no expert but I am certain that the heat created by hacking a piece off with an abrasive disk would not only affect the crystal arrangement of the metal but also the value if it was indeed a meteorite. This specimen obviously got very hot and lots of surface was exposed to an abrasive wheel. That ain't good brother.

Bob

Thanks bob. Appreciate that. The surface has those cutting disc marks in. I’ve since polished it down. I’m hoping it won’t of affected the core too much. The temperature was high but not in the 100s of degrees ( I could still touch it ).

do you think it would still be worth doing the etching? Would that determine if it were a meteorite? I do have access to a bandsaw but even then I think the thing would still get pretty hot, albeit a lot more controlled and cooler than a cutting disk. It also seemed to retain more heat than your typical metals ie ali/stainless/mild. I work in these materials and this thing was still pretty warm 40 minutes after the cut. 

what do you think it is? I’m trying to wrap my head around it. 

What would your next move be? 

 

Ps sorry if you’ve already told me what I should do. I re read your post and it’s hard to digest for a newbie x

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Edited by Chrisrobe

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