This is a significant US amethyst specimen: An exceptional large cluster with grape-juice purple crystals, from major finds of the early 2000s here. This piece is dramatic, complete all around, and just stunning. The major crystals are all gemmy at the tips. While other pockets are deservedly famous from this mine, and feature different styles (generally with less intense purple but on quartz matrix in some cases), this particular pocket was always the most impactful to me. I recall seeing the case on exhibit on the main show floor at tucson around 2000 or 2001, and being blown away. Few were found of this size, and quality. I should mention here that the piece is nearly pristine, and there isn't a ding at all on any major crystals despite its size and 3-dimensionality. I have known about it for a decade and always regaded it as one of my favorite major Amethysts from this locality. It is complete all around. When found in the pocket, as told to me by Terry Ledford, it was "wiggly" and so they dripped glue down the middle and you would consider this stabilised/repaired although it has never come apart, per se. The original owner who bought it from the miners has added a sealant base to the bottom, at the midpoint, to be sure to support the weight and keep the cluster solidly together as an extra precaution. I have followed this piece through 2 collections (from the original miner/owner) for a decade, and am proud to have it now. Joe Budd Photos.
This is a major cabinet specimen worthy of any fine collection, and quite a level above the usual sort of sulfur you see (of which even small ones of superb color are now going for five figures). A stunning specimen from an old collection, this piece is two-faced. One side shows an incredible, almost unique, metallic-lustrous sulfur crystallization that forms an interlinked display face of bright crystals. The color is INTENSE and as saturated as I have ever seen in sulfur, but it is the LUSTER that makes this side special, and dramatic. I have seldom seen luster like this, and only on a few smaller specimens (as well as one illustrated in a recent issue of the MR, of similar habit but smaller size). The other side is more traditional, with larger, fat and 3-dimensional, golfball-like crystals growing out from a mass of smaller crystals. It is beautiful as well, though entirely different in style from the other side of the piece. The entire specimen is a floater, complete all around. It has almost no damage (a few very minor rubs you have to look to find, only), remarkable given its size. This piece was in an old collection in Italy for decades, and is the only such example I have seen on the market for this style, in good condition. As good as the photos are, the piece is simply glowing with color in person and so saturated in color, that it is hard to believe it is real. It is THAT good. Joe Budd Photos.
A MAJOR specimen from this old mine, dated to the Colorado gold rush era of the 1880s. It is complete all around and there are no repairs. People knowledgeable about such gold specimens have indicated to me that the rarity of this piece, in such a size and quality range, is not to be underestimated: it is perhaps one of only a half dozen surviving golds of this magnitude. This piece has superb history and provenance, which will be disclosed upon purchase. These are not massive golds - at 98 grams, it should go to th eknowledgeable collector who appreciates the rarity value of such a historic piece, and is not for those who need heft to feel a gold has value. For 2006-2011 it was in the touring exhibit "GOLD!", organized by the American Museum of Natural History. This was seen over 5 years of travelling exhibition in Houston, Atlanta, New Orleans, New York, Chicago, Denver, Anchorage, Tokyo's Mingei Museum, and others. Joe Budd Photos.
This mine produced largely during a short run in the early 2000s, some of the best large tourmaline specimens we have seen in recent years. A spectacular large, upright, gem tourmaline crystal is the highlight of this piece. It is carefully centered on a well-trimmed shard of crystallized quartz, from which it shoots up dramatically. Small , sparkly, sugar-white crystals of cleavelandite are in association, for accents. As with all such pieces from this mine, or similarly gracile tourmalines from any locale, there are a few repairs. In context, however, the repairs are both minimal and acceptable given the size of the piece. The large central crystal is nearly 10 inches tall, and just glows a vivid evergreen hue, when backlit. Even minimal backlighting is enough to bring that color out. This particular specimen was a holdback, long kept in the personal collection of two mine partners until sold to me, and not put out for sale at the time in which they were mined. It is, overall, a dramatic and imposing specimen. Joe Budd photos.
ex. Dr. Edward David
We have all seen a lot of carrollites from the glory hole finds of around 2000-2002, and a few trickling out later. However, this piece for me has ALWAYS been one of my very favorites, since the day I first bought it from the Gobin brothers in Tucson before the show opened, in 2001. I sold it immediately to Ed David, in whose collection it remained until recently. There were larger crystals (then, not available now still). There were more exposed crystals. But there were VERY few crystals of such mesmerizing surface detail, and of this sharp octohedral habit, even amongst the whole breadth of the find. Of those few, this was the best in the size range available at the time and it remains one I always compare other examples of the species to. It is decidedly unusual, as most people consider a more complex crystal to be the sterotypic habit. Yet it is this unusual simplicity of the overall form, combined with subtle complexity on the faces and bevelled edges, that makes this unique and special even amongst the relatively few larger crystals. Moreover, very few specimens, probably only a few dozen in all, had this level of quality and were perched without repair in accenting calcite matrix. So, overall, I feel that this is one of those specimens that has the qualities of superb examples of its species; but enough individuality to also stand on its own merits as something so far off the normal spectrum as to be in its own category for desirability. I have hoarded it away since I bought the Ed David collection in 2006, and this is its first time presented for sale. Joe Budd photos
A stunning, unusually elongated and vertical tanzanite crystal showing vivid gemminess , especially when stood up showing the purple side forward. For whatever reasons, I cannot explain, nearly all tanzanite crystals present at their best with the blue face forward, and the purple axis turned 90 degrees from display. It is just the way of things. But this piece really shows both the best drama and the best gemminess, with the purple facing the viewer. The blue color is equally intense, though, and no slouch on its own. When a light is shined up along the c-axis, bottom to top, the piece glows with a brilliant red-magenta color that is indicative of its natural coloration without treatment (treatment for the gem trade disrupts the third, red color from showing). What is amazing is that, despite the height, the light really transmits through nicely along the long c-axis and makes the whole piece glow, instead of just the tip. The crystal is pristine and complete all around, although it has a "slip contact" where one surface is rough in a few places, only on the very right hand edge, due to contact where it grew against another crystal. The piece is obviously very 3-dimensional as you can see, and reminds me of Transco tower in Houston. So overall this is a stunningly intense, deep blue crystal that is natural and unheated. The piece shows vivid blue, red, and purple colors along its three axes. At just over 100 grams mass, there is a sizeable amount of high-grade cutting rough here, where you could go right up the gemmy core of the piece and cut intense purple-oriented stones including two of substantial size. As I say elsewhere here, I am a big believer in hoarding fine tanzanites, as the source just cannot last forever, and worldwide demand for the gemstone drives the miners to cut good crystals for the easy and quick monetary yield, as opposed to save them. This particular crystal was found in the early 2000s and has been in a private collection since that time. Comes with a custom lucite base for display. Joe Budd photos
A stunningly intense, deep blue crystal that is natural and unheated. The piece shows vivid blue, red, and purple colors along its three axes. The blue is particularly intense, especially when you consider how GEMMY the top is ; and how usually those two features do not go hand in hand. A fancy termination and top-percentile glassy lustre together, make this a superb large miniature. The crystal is 66 grams and contains a large amount of cutting rough in gem-clean regions. Although there are a few narrow veils in the gem portions, the piece still would cut three decent sized stones and some smaller stones, all of AAA unheated color. Thus, at the source even, we had to pay a price for this crystal based on its facet value. It was estimated that the cutting value of this crystal is nearly the specimen value being asked, making it a relative bargain as far as these go, based on this intrinsic value. I am a big believer in hoarding fine tanzanites, as the source just cannot last forever, and worldwide demand for the gemstone drives the miners to cut good crystals for the easy and quick monetary yield, as opposed to save them. This particular crystal was found in April of 2011, and came in a small pocket that yielded a number of pieces with this fancy, unusually complex termination which I find highly desirable. Comes with a custom lucite base for display. Joe Budd photos
ex. Herb Obodda
Kunzite from Nuristan region is now fairly common on the market, but one still can seek out individual pieces which excel above the crowd. This exceptionally sharp, elongated, totally gem crystal masses 500 grams; and for its unique aesthetics was one of the few large gem crystals kept by Herb Obodda in his collection (which we recently acquired), over decades of travel to this region. Some people love matrix kunzites, some prefer these gem floaters (complete and formed all the way around). Although there are certainly bigger kunzite floaters, I have seen few this size with such elegance. The crystal has only two minor spots of damage on an edge, and a small contact with a bit of attached matrix in the middle - otherwise pristine. It is well-terminated and has a pleasing pink color.. Joe Budd photos
Himalaya tourmalines are known for being broken in situ, and repaired. It just goes with the territory , as the pegmatite was severely disrupted and shocked over the tens of millions of years since it formed. There are few large tourmalines from this mine and district which do not contain repairs. However, this is one of the best we have seen, as it has intense red-pink color and beautiful tapering form, with both terminations. Also, the particular style of the larger tourmalines tends to show zoning, usually with a pale green or pale pink zone mixed in. This crystal is a solid, saturated color throughout. The photos are taken under sun balanced halogens and are accurate in my cases lit by halogen, but the color shifts a little darker in some lighting; and a little paler in color in flourescent lighting.. This crystal is imposing for the size, but the solidity of color is equally important and again, uncommon in crystals over 3 inches (and this is nearly 6 inches). The Piece is doubly terminated and looks good from either end - it also stands on its own , on the flat termination. Minor purple lepidolite is in association. The piece is in remarkably good condition, with the main crystal not even having a single nick or ding upon it. The small sidecar crystal at the base is missing its tip, as the only damage to note here (and that could be an in situ thing anyhow). A custom base is included to show it standing up, with the smaller pointed termination facing down, if desired - it does look good either way! From a prominent California collection, recently deacquisitioned. According to the mine owner, Bill Larson, this would have been mined by him in the later 1980s, circa 1985-1989. He also said that this would be worth $25,000 if he had it.Joe Budd photos
A unique piece, which has not been seen on the market since the early 2000s, has now resurfaced. Among the few collectors and dealers familiar with the great stash of Pederneira Mine specimens which came up to the New York area when the specimens were mainly flowing out through Daniel Trinchillo and his partner (Marcus Budil) , this has always been a talked-about piece. It was a unique piece mined around 2001, and such a combination was never seen again despite 8 more years of intense mining. The piece was nicknamed "Sword in the Stone" and kept in the collection of the mine partners for several years, until sold in a pinch to pay for further mining efforts, around 2003. I lost track of it and then saw it again, in 2010, in a collection overseas. The piece is just mesmerizing in person. It has a shocking color contrast, and both crystals are gemmy and lustrous. Although irregular around the base of the morganite, it is contacted and not damaged or "hacked off." It is, surprisingly, not repaired and not damaged. I am really honored to be able to bring this to market again as its a piece that has long stuck in my mind as something just so unique and pretty, I always wanted to own it. Soon after I got it back, the specimen was featured in the Pederneira Mine case at the 2010 Munich Show exhibit , "Brazilian Dreams." Comes with custom lucite base.Joe Budd photos
Milpillas , to me, is the wonder-locality of the first part of this century. It is now producing, briefly, azurite of such a quality as to rival and surpass Tsumeb. Nothing like these has been seen in decades, and even then, Milpillas has a style and intense blue color in its large crystals that makes it stand out. With the mine scheduled to burn through the oxide zone in which these occur within the next year, I also believe that a great Milpillas azurite is a good investment now. The world just doesn't make azurites like this, often, from anywhere. This bonanza will not last...cannot, according to the geology there. And so, I have hoarded a few great specimens while waiting to see how the mine winds down. This piece , with its gently curving crystals to 4 inches, has among the largest fine crystals found to date (to my knowledge, and I have followed the finds carefully). It probably came out about 2 years ago. The contrast with the malachite underneath adds color to the bottom horizon. The crystals are not quite, but nearly pristine. They are dramatic, and the piece can be seen from meters away. Moreover, it looks good either horizontally or vertically.. Joe Budd photos
Every now and then, you see a large matrix piece which just screams "fake" at you. It just seems too contrived to be real. That is what I thought of this specimen, when I first saw it in a dealer advertisement over 5 years ago. When I saw it in person though, I immediately realized that it actually is the real thing, with three isolated and pristine tourmaline crystals shooting out in 3 different directions. Remarkably, there are no repairs! The piece has been through my preferred preparation lab to confirm that fact. The fact that a single matrix piece can have two totally different habits of tourmaline has always impressed me about how these things form. It is rare, but it happens. Still, usually that exceptional case refers to two tourmalines of the same color, but perhaps different terminations on the same matrix. Here, we have both of the really stereotypical habits of a Paprok tourmaline, totally different in color and symmetries, perched on the same piece. The classic multicolored red-green crystal is 5 inches tall. Again, it is NOT repaired, despite its perch and freestanding nature. The hot pink crystal to the left is fully 2 inches long, and shows a totally different termination. We call this style the "bubblegum pinks" and it is also classic for the locality. I simply am NOT aware of another specimen which combines both of these particular styles of tourmaline, let alone with such pizzazz. This is a major matrix tourmaline, by any standard. Joe Budd photos
ex. William Larson
Bill Larson mined the Himalaya Mine in its modern era of production, from the late 1970s until early 2000s when he closed it (it remains open under new owners, but the days of heavy drifting and exploration are done). The deposits here were subject to enormous shearing and breaking forces after emplacement, and the pegmatites show this clearly. To mine them, is more difficult than at some other pegmatite localities, as a result. Most larger pieces are also, therefore, found broken in situ. And it follows that most larger specimens from the Himalaya, and from other San Diego mines, are repaired. In all that time, Larson says he can count on two hands the number of large crystals of this size that were found in pristine condition, and on one hand those found without repairs. This is one of those very , very rarified large crystals found pristine in the mine, and not broken in situ or in collecting. Every now and then, I have something that Bill Larson wants from me, and the only solution is an exchange for a stashed piece from his private collection. This giant is 326 grams, and near the top in size for a single crystal from the mine. It is pristine all around and stands beautifully on our custom lucite base. The color is a pure, classic "Himalaya Pink" hue with a slight green zone near the lower termination. The lower termination extends out into multiply formed small points, and the top termination is classic , lustrous, bright and flat as is normal for the mine. Joe Budd photos
Colombian emeralds are the apex predator of emeralds and beryls...they just have a magical appeal perhaps due to the fact that everybody knows what emerald is, and recognizes it on a shelf. Despite being worked for 400 years (and more), the mines of Colombia are still going. However, truly great specimens are few and far between, and only a handful come out each year - a fact. There simply are not enough specimens of a level beyond "average" to satisfy the collector market. While most emerald crystals average 1-2 cm and tend to be rather slender, this specimen hosts a very large, undamaged and unrepaired emerald crystal measuring 3.4 cm tall, 1.7 cm width, and 1.4 cm to 1.8 cm thick (the top is slanted to the back, hence the narrowing). It has phenomenal impact, visually - the color is just the top juicy intense green that specimen collectors tend to favor for its "pop," over the slightly darker evergreen hue favored by gem merchants. Luster is ultra-glassy, and bright. The termination is also glassy and bright. Internally, the crystal has a vivid sparkle to it, with no dullness as sometimes is seen in large emeralds' murky interiors. The piece is translucent, but even inside it is bright, in other words. Most emerald specimens consist of crystals arranged haphazardly in matrix, and usually of slender crystals at that. Seldom do you see so robust a crystal, let alone freestanding and flanked by contrasting matrix of the best sort (white calcite that is also crystalline, and not just ugly rock or hackly calcite which is much more common). A small sidecar crystal juts out towards the viewer at the base and provides a little accent. It also is gemmy, bright, and glassy. Aesthetically, its hard to ask for more. Moreover, the combination of intense color saturation with the surface luster is not at all common in emeralds of such size. The piece overall is a full-on large miniature of competition calibre, and the size of the emerald in it warrants a level of significance beyond the actual size of the specimen itself, in my opinion. I believe there are very few finer emerald matrix specimens out there to be had - certainly only a few per year of any size make themselves known to the whole worldwide market. Mined around 2000, Joe Budd photos
This is a FLOATER. complete all around. It has no damage of any note beyond the most miniscule ding. It is from the famous 1978 pocket, and these still remain the most famous and desired tourmalines among collectors. Clusters are rarified - and most of the specimens I have seen are either singles or singles in matrix of lepidolite. This piece has a stunning, total clarity and gemminess to it that the pocket is famed for having, yet most specimens actually do not have in full quality. From a private collection, this was stashed for about 30 years down in Brazil until only recently. Joe Budd photos
All Content and Design ©1996-2012 The Arkenstone
Powered by http://mineralwebsites.comMineral Specimens by species; or by specimen id.