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First Ruby Carving

Pete D

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My first attempt at carving a Ruby in fact doing anything with ruby. It's about 10mm on the widest axis with a 3mm Opal insert. Don't know the weight as I need new baterries for the scales!

Ruby and sapphire are only a step behind diamond for hardness so as I expected it was pretty slow going.



PS Resizing the image to 640x480 changed the proportions by fattening it somehow

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Hello Pete,


Thank you for sharing this photo of the carved ruby. I cannot imagine carving something harder than the organic materials that I carve now. It takes patience to do what I do. I can only imagine the greater degree of patience one must have to carve a gem or stone.


About the resizing, thank you for prepping the photo for posting. The image does not need to be exactly 640 x 480. That is a general zone to aim for. If you wish to try it again, just make the long side fall between 600 to 750 pixels. If the software keeps the original image dimensions in proportion to one another, the other side will be automatically resized. Then, go into the post to edit it, upload the new photo and delete the previous one. I believe that members have this ability, to add and also delete photos.


I am curious about what the shape of the carved ruby actually is.



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Hi Pete and Janel.


I am sure what happened was that when the photo was re-sized, Pete did not make sure that the Aspect Ratio was locked (This keeps the photo in proportion ) so when the photo was re-sized, it lost the correct proportions.


If you have an option in your photo editor Pete, make sure to lock the proportions when re-sizing.


If you don't have the option, you can email me your photo and I will re-size it for you.





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I think it may have gone strange because I had first cropped the image then re-sized (I did check the aspect ratio box).


This photo is resized from the original image without cropping and it seems to give pretty good indictaion of the shape. I did try cropping after resizing but it seemed to alter the shape a bit.


It has a groove carved around the perimeter for setting purposes. I can't give the weight because it wasn't the batteries but the scales are not working.

As to patience Janel, I can't say I'm particularly patient but it did take about 4 hours. Roughing out using course diamond is reasonably fast but it's getting rid of those scratches which starts to become painful!

When I carve quartz etc I can use a shaped nail for fine detail but on the ruby the nail is too soft I think. I've been thinking of trying old drills for a harder type carving bit and would be interested to hear what others use for fine detail on hard stone.


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Hello Pete

Nice work, a difficult stone to carve, good shape and design, I use a few different methods to smooth hard stone, firstly rough carve with 100 grit sintered diamond burs on my air tool, sometimes use mini nova diamond points to smooth of most of the chatter, I think all finishing should be done by hand, all my carvings are hand finished. Try using course diamond mixed to a paste on bamboo scuers and use like a file, baboo is very tough and flexable, these will wear quickly, but they are cheap, I sometimes put these in my air tool or dremel to do the same thing very slow speed, bamboo contains silica quartz crystals, in China and Burma the have been using bamboo for thousands of years to carve Jade, it will even final polish jadeite wet or dry, diamond files are a good method of removing chatter marks also, a lot quicker. I also use diamond sandpaper on scuers the same as the paste, there are so many methods when you think about it and experiment, diamond on soft and hard timbers, or even diamond on leather.


Cheers michael B :)

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