Blog Archives

Rare Opal Pattern

Sometimes an opal cutter comes across some rare opal that has an unusual pattern. These opals are both rare and unique. Peter cut one of these rare opals recently. The rare opal pictured below, weighs 14 carats and measures 30 mm by 20 mm.

Rare opal patterns in large stones are not cut often and for a cutter can be a heart-pounding discovery.

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Mammoth Ivory Carvings – New Shipment

19/05/2016. We are just beginning to put out in the shop the latest exquisite fossil mammoth ivory carvings our carvers have recently finished. This is just one of several master carved pieces. Running horses sitting on a hand carved wooden base. The price is A$900

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Mineshaft History – 2015

20/10/2015…..Solid opal Buddha carving 87.7 carats. This carving was carved last week by our carver in Bali. It took him 18 hours.

The opal was found by Peter and was part of the first pocket mined at the Grasshopper field of Mintabie in South Australia

17/09/15………Rough GEMSTONES in sterling silver.

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The Story of Australia Documentary

Mineshafts’s participation in The Story of Australia…..documentary aired in China to 21 million viewers.

Peter  (Owner of Mineshaft) was invited to be part of this documentary. One of the six parts was on mining in Australia and a section of this was on opal. Peter was interviewed in the shop and later filmed cutting opal at his workshop.

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Mineshaft History – 2014

11/12/14…These three Buddha carvings by our own carver in Bali were unpacked and sold within the day to one of our Buddha collectors in the UK.

8/12/14….Parcels everywhere. We have received an avalanche of  stock arriving for Christmas. Lots of jewellery, small gemstone carvings and a parcel of rare phantom crystals including rare green phantom clusters.

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About Opal

Australian Precious Opal is the best quality opal in the world. It has supplied the market with an abundance of unique and exquisite gems for over 100 years. However love of opal and the wonder of the stone started along time before Australian opal was discovered. Some writings mention that the first recorded opal artifacts dating back to about 4000 B.C.

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Denver Show

Denver Show 2011

The Denver show in Colorado USA is held every year in September. It is regarded by many as the ‘little brother’ of the Tucson gem and mineral show.

I have wanted to see this show for many years just to see what it is like and how it compares.  

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Ethiopian opal update

ETHIOPIAN OPAL UPDATE (A soapbox opinion)

Should the Australian Opal industry be worried about the influx of Ethiopian Opal onto the world market?

I believe many in our industry are blissfully running their businesses along the same lines they have always been without any knowledge or interest in what is happening on the world stage.

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In the past few months I have been approached by two separate opal miners for help in selling two unique but totally different opals. As yet both are unsold and still on the market.

The first started with a customer telling me about a friend who was an opal miner years ago who had a very nice opal for sale.

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Tucson 2010

Tucson Show 2010

The Tucson gem and mineral show is a pilgrimage that anyone interested in gems, minerals, fossils or jewellery should make at least once.

I have been more then 25 times and spent over a year of my life at the show. In that time it has grown from being held in 3 motels to over 40 locations scattered across Tucson.

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