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September 2009
in this issue
-- The V2 Faceting Machine
-- A Place to learn Faceting - The Rochester Lapidary Society in Rochester, New York
-- Looking through the old files -- I found: 7-fold and 11-fold Symmetries. - Some New (Old) Designs
-- 77 Index Gear
-- New Representative - New York City - MELISSA JOHNSON
-- New Representative - Sri Lanka - AJITH SIRIWARDENA


Welcome to the September 2009 copy of the Some Times Newsletter.

The V2 Faceting Machine
UT-ad-V2-no price

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A Place to learn Faceting - The Rochester Lapidary Society in Rochester, New York
Rochester Lapidary Club - training Karen Rakowski, a retired manager from Eastman Kodak, became interested in Faceting while attending the Lapidary Society's workshops. She has written an article for their newsletter - and borrowing liberally from that article, here's what she says about it - in the picture, Karen is shown with Paul Dudley, the faceting instructor. And so, mostly in her words:

While attending the lapidary workshops, "I noticed a small group in the back of the room where students were learning to grind and polish faceted stones. I was excited. The club has enough faceting equipment for up to 3 students to learn the art of faceting at one time. As students finished up, a new class was started. Some of the trained students went on to buy their own equipment, or to work with new skills in the jewelry trade. Others, like me, only wanted initially to know "how it was done" and satisfy some of the intense attraction to shiny things. I joined the waiting list and started with the next round of instruction.

The instructor, Paul Dudley, used Jeff Graham's "Learn to Facet the Right Way" as a text. We used optical, insulator and kiln glass to get started cutting. This use of glass with beginners was a wise choice because it is easy to cut and polish, and reduced the fear factor tremendously. As we were learning that "super" glue has a shelf life, setting the angle incorrectly will result in a much smaller finished stone, and that laps can scratch as well as smooth, it was nice to know that we were not also wasting valuable rough. By the end of the class series I had cut two round brilliants, a cushion, a trillion, and a pear in various jewel tones.

Some other things that I learned:

* Everybody does things a little differently. As you can see in the photo, I stand to facet and have to keep explaining that it is comfortable for me.

* At the Rochester Lapidary Society workshops, the faceting instruction and all other lapidary coaching and instruction by members are "for free". Only a small donation of $4 per night is collected to cover costs of insurance and lapidary equipment replacement. Students only need to buy their instruction book.

* Good equipment makes a difference. So does bad equipment. Correcting for alignment or cant or wobble is frustrating. I applaud the Club's goal of having four top performing Ultra Tec machines for teaching and workshops. So far we have two.

And, it is possible to have other people look at your beginner work that is not perfect for meet points, alignment, or polish and still think that what you made was very special. The opportunity to learn the fundamentals of faceting has been both challenging and fun. I can't wait to do more. It's Facet-nating!

The Rochester Lapidary Society conducts lapidary workshops on Wednesday evenings and Saturdays. It is located at Rochester School for the Deaf, St. Paul Street, Rochester New York. If you want more information, contact Dexter Hill (585) 227-3149 or Basil Babey (585) 244-5792.

Looking through the old files -- I found: 7-fold and 11-fold Symmetries. - Some New (Old) Designs
filing cabinet 1988 is a long time ago - and, the computer revolution has made it a very long time ago. In 1988 the word "file" meant a real file-a file cabinet!

Back Then, "save" wasn't just a click of a computer key-- we actually saved real pieces of paper, squeezed into manila folders, in turn, squeezed into metal drawers. Now those file cabinets are taking up space-some of them unopened for years.

A perfect workaholic activity is to open one of those drawers, and clean it out. That's what I did. I found much obsolete stuff to toss out-but I also found something nice: a "Bob Hall" folder.

In '88, Bob Hall inspired us to make a 77 Index Gear - usable for 7 and 11-fold symmetries. The idea of the odd number symmetry was that stones with more brilliance would result. In the folder were several designs for 7's and 11's: The Dreamlight Eleven, The O'Henry II, the Uthis, the Sunlite Crown, the Eleven Main Brilliant Crown, and the Asmara Star.

They weren't doing anyone any good in the old file drawer -so, we've now put them into the Library (in, click on Library, and then on 7-11 Designs

7-11 Designs

77 Index Gear
77 Index gear for Ultra Tec V2 Faceting Machine What do you need to do those 7 and 11-fold designs? Well, obviously, a 77 Index Gear. If you look at those designs, you'll see that on some designs, some of the index positions are called out as half steps-like 17.5 and 24.5. You get those positions by inserting a pin between the Index Gear and the detent-and the pin for doing that is supplied with the 77 Index Gear.

I'm going to do some more digging through the old file- perhaps there are more designs to find.

Go to the Ultra Tec Library

New Representative - New York City - MELISSA JOHNSON
Melissa Johnson in NYC Yes, those are the skyscrapers of Manhattan out the window. Melissa Johnson, originally from California, has been living in New York for the last five years. She said that she was "always" a rockhound, since she was a little kid, and her faceting machine - an Ultra Tec - was a gift at age 16.

Melissa works for production design companies - staging live events, concerts, corporate functions, product launches, that sort of thing. She specializes in lighting - appropriate for a creator of faceted Gems.

We welcome her to the Ultra Tec team.

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New Representative - Sri Lanka - AJITH SIRIWARDENA
Ajith - Sri Lanka Sri Lanka's prominence in the World of gems dates back 2000 years. From ancient times to current times-it has been known as the source of gemstones in great variety.

We are proud to have Ajith Siriwardena as Ultra Tec's representative there. An expert in the field, he holds advanced degrees in gemmology, and is the past President of the Gemmologists Association of Sri Lanka. It is interesting to read their web page-you will find some of Ajith's writings, and some of his photographic work.

Ultra Tec welcomes Ajith to its team of international representatives.

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