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Found this piece my fourth time out hunting an observed fall site in N Florida. It attracts strongly to a magnet, is heavy for its size (22.7 g), shows metal flakes/ splotches in the window that I diamond-filed, and tests positive for nickel. The streak test is inconclusive due to the presence of surface oxidation. Wanted the forum's opinion about it before getting too excited.

Warren

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Edited by Erratic33
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Interesting find but doesn’t look meteoritic to me. Too round IMO, and not natural. Just my opinion. And as they say, opinions are like bellybuttons, everyone has one. 
 

Keeping looking down.

Jason

Edited by Jayray
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Good catch Erratic, 

But it looks too symmetric, more like a piece of scrap metal. That cut metallic interior would be excellent to test on an inside of a toilet tank to see what it may streak. It it is grey or dull red, it is not a meteorite. I would get a second opinion with a hands on expert. I still think it is scrap metal. It looks wrong for a meteorite.

Keep looking down, they're out there.

Cheers!

billpeters

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12 hours ago, Erratic33 said:

Thank you for your insight, gentlemen. Do you even think it's worth sending off for testing?

The learning process is worth the price of an ICP analysis. And that won't tell you much.

Differentiating terrestrial iron from meteoritic iron is tricky. It often boils down to visual indicators. A layman simply cannot do anything to prove a piece of (non mineral) iron is or is not from space. Only a professional can do that and even then it is often a soft sided approach.

Tramp metal often looks suspicious. I have pondered a ton of it. And with little iron meteorites in a corrosive environment you honestly may not be able to tell the difference. 

Irons have a definitive shape and a durable crust. The ones I am familiar with are never rusted to shale. There is never symmetry. Always blobs and knobs and fingers. Always a bit of blue black crust. Mega hard shiny metal just under a fine, thin oxidation.

That is how I decide whether to keep them or huck them over my shoulder. I hope that helps.

In the end the only way you are going to be able to differentiate an iron meteorite and a chunk of tramp metal is by professional opinion. I would wager that most would discount it simply by sight. 

Now... That observed fall was an iron and not a stony meteorite was it not?  Because what you have would be an iron.

Another observation. Your photo looks a lot like an old wedge. The top looks like it was hardened from blows. The "nickel flakes" look a lot like crystallized metal at the head of the wedge. Since I try to ID what I see rather than look for meteoritic characteristics that would be my call. A wedge with hardened crystallization at the top and a deeply rusted and withering basal end where the unworked metal is softer.

 

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Bedrock Bob,

By 'observed fall' I mean that there were dozens of reports to the NMS website and a fall trajectory plotted. The area is mostly private property and heavily wooded. To my knowledge there have been no rocks recovered from it and the classification (iron or chondrite) has yet to be determined. I agree that, if this were a meteorite, it shows more characteristics of a stoney rather than an iron. I've recovered tons of meteor-wrongs but this is the first that ever tested positive for nickel.

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5 hours ago, Erratic33 said:

Bedrock Bob,

By 'observed fall' I mean that there were dozens of reports to the NMS website and a fall trajectory plotted. The area is mostly private property and heavily wooded. To my knowledge there have been no rocks recovered from it and the classification (iron or chondrite) has yet to be determined. I agree that, if this were a meteorite, it shows more characteristics of a stoney rather than an iron. I've recovered tons of meteor-wrongs but this is the first that ever tested positive for nickel.

You misunderstood me I guess. That is a hunk of free metal isn't it? It looks like it is all metal in the photos. Maybe I am mistaken.

I don't see anything except metal. So I am saying it is a suspect iron. Not a stone meteorite.

If it is stone you can easily determine by the streak if it is a meteorite. But free metallic iron specimens are not readily identified.

To be clear it does not look like terrestrial mineral or a stony meteorite to me. It looks like metallic iron. Which means an artifact or an iron meteorite. Both of which can be expected to contain nickel. 

If you see metal flecks in a stone you have an item of interest. I am seeing a solid piece of metal but I may be interpreting the photo wrong.

If the "witnessed fall" was just a possible fall and there are no other specimens to compare it to then you need to keep looking. That is not a piece of it. That specimen has spent years and years rusting. It is a metal artifact.

Good luck! Keep looking and don't waste much effort on nickel tests. You will recognize one when you see it and there will be little debate when you do.

 

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Yes, Bob I did misunderstand you. I filed the rock some more to get a clean face to do a streak test but have been unable to get a streak on the unglazed bottom of a coffee cup, except when it contacts the unfiled rock surface and I get a light grey streak. Definitely more metal flakes though. I appreciate all the advice and will call it a wedge until I can find more pieces.

 

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Edited by Erratic33
Clarification on streak test
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  • 2 weeks later...

I think it's great you are on the trail in Florida and Georgia  and I hope you find some !   I would love to find a tektite or even a tiny piece of meteorite in Georgia any day of the week !

Bill

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You and me both. I've been on the hunt for many years and, when we finally had the chance to do some dry lake hunting in NV, my wife ended up finding a meteorite. I am making arrangements with the property owner to do more searching in the area I found this rock and hope to post more pictures soon.

 

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