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Petrified Mammoth tooth


Slaightear

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A couple of years back a friend gave me a petrified Mammoth tooth.

And I've been trying to figure out what tools might be best for carving

it. It's much too brittle to use any stone carving tools as it just breaks

off too easily. Not having any bits for working with stone or similar materials

I've never tried using my Foredom on it. Has anyone every worked with

petrified materials? Or a knowledge of what bits work best with stone-like

materials?

 

TIA

Slaightear

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A couple of years back a friend gave me a petrified Mammoth tooth.

And I've been trying to figure out what tools might be best for carving

it. It's much too brittle to use any stone carving tools as it just breaks

off too easily. Not having any bits for working with stone or similar materials

I've never tried using my Foredom on it. Has anyone every worked with

petrified materials? Or a knowledge of what bits work best with stone-like

materials?

 

TIA

Slaightear

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I would use diamond bits, they don't have to be incredibly expensive ones, just the type that Harbor Freight sells that have 10-30 to a set with different shaped heads. If you have a friend who's a dentist, they're often great resources of used diamond bits for free (if you ask nicely).

 

I carve alot of stone and have carved tusk, but not mammoth tooth. I think that you are going to run into a great discrepancy of hardness between the enamel and the interior of the tooth. It can be overcome, but just be aware that the hardness is probably not going to be uniform.

 

Be sure and use the Flexible Shaft in order to keep the motor away from the water you will have to use to carve this stone. You want to either drip water on the piece as you carve it or dip it in water as you go. This is to keep the stone cool so it doesn't fracture with the heat.

 

In regards to polishing, many jeweler's supply stores sell rubber abrasive bits (and Dremel has some too) in different grits that are used for polishing metal. These work very well for polishing most stones, and they're alot cheaper than buying all the diamond powder that is generally used by most lapidaryists to polish rocks. Rottenstone and pumice powder work well for preliminary sanding and polishing, use a moistened muslin or felt wheel and dip it in a little bit of the powder.

 

Then most important thing to remember when carving stone is that the dust is really bad to breathe. Try to always keep the carving wet to keep the dust down, and when you're done for the day wipe your work surface down with some damp towels so you don't end up breathing the stuff. There are several nasty occupational diseases associated with carving stone, and you just don't want to be one of those statistics.

 

Good Luck!

 

Debbie K

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Slaightear,

 

Mammoth teeth are rarely carved, they are far too brittle. I have used them for bases for mammoth ivory sculpture by preserving them which I do with cyanoacrilate and G2 epoxy. It is finicky business. I would not carve it though, that would likely to destroy the tooth as the plates have separated completely and you would need to fill all the gaps with epoxy for the carving to work. The one in the picture is nice and if cared for properly should fetch around $500. PM me if you want more info on this kind of work.

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]Over 10 years ago I figured out how to stabilize and carve mammoth teeth. I now carve 20 to 30 teeth a year. The only teeth that are suitable to carve are from the north and come out of the permafrost.

It is hard to tell by the photo if your tooth is carveable. it looks like it has good roots. When I get a tooth I seal it and let it dry for at least six months. I then pour thin CA glue in it. I buy this in bulk from EZ Bond.

I use carbide burrs and a foredoom. It clogs diamond and you do not have to use water unless it is completely replaced by stone.

Do you know where it was found?

post-2114-1272702340.jpg

post-2114-1272702447.jpg

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]Over 10 years ago I figured out how to stabilize and carve mammoth teeth. I now carve 20 to 30 teeth a year. The only teeth that are suitable to carve are from the north and come out of the permafrost.

It is hard to tell by the photo if your tooth is carveable. it looks like it has good roots. When I get a tooth I seal it and let it dry for at least six months. I then pour thin CA glue in it. I buy this in bulk from EZ Bond.

I use carbide burrs and a foredoom. It clogs diamond and you do not have to use water unless it is completely replaced by stone.

Do you know where it was found?

 

Wow-nice! first time I've seen that! good work. I stand corrected. Thanks Chuck, you're one of the rare ones! Come to think of it anything is carvable...I've made cabs out of the plates they're nice.

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]Over 10 years ago I figured out how to stabilize and carve mammoth teeth. I now carve 20 to 30 teeth a year. The only teeth that are suitable to carve are from the north and come out of the permafrost.

It is hard to tell by the photo if your tooth is carveable. it looks like it has good roots. When I get a tooth I seal it and let it dry for at least six months. I then pour thin CA glue in it. I buy this in bulk from EZ Bond.

I use carbide burrs and a foredoom. It clogs diamond and you do not have to use water unless it is completely replaced by stone.

Do you know where it was found?

 

 

Wow! Lots of good info ... thanks very much all. A friend of mine back on PEI gave me this tooth when they moved back from the Yukon. I hauled it out here to northern Saskatchewan along with a few other treasures ... also have a musk-ox horn another friend brought back from that beautiful place!

 

This is definitely one of the brittle teeth but maybe the water + diamond bits might be a place to start. {Fingers crossed} So far it's just crumbled when I've tested other different methods. I will definitely keep you all up to date on my results.

 

If all else fails it's a great conversation piece in my pool room. :)

 

Thanks again

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