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Archive for February, 2008

Minerama Field Trip Options

Posted February 28, 2008 By Admin

One of the most important features of Minerama is the programme of field trips.  Fossickers can visit a range of locations in the company of an experienced guide to look for a range of gems.  Heaps of fun and very affordable. 

There are field trips to suit all types of fossickers – from the complete beginner to the utterly obsessed.  See the Minerama website for more information on the program or just call in to the Minerama information desk for some guidance.

Click “Continue Reading” below to see some options for each day from Thursday 6th March to Monday 10th March 2008.

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Faceting Machine Reviews

Posted February 28, 2008 By AussieSapphire

Buying a faceting machine is a significant investment for most people and deciding which machine to choose can be very confusing.

At Aussie Sapphire, we pride ourselves on providing information and service to support the products we sell so we have just started on a new section to help people with this choice.


Our recommendation is based on our opinion and experience with machines we stock and others we have seen and worked with.  Reviews from other people are also included where available to give you other points of view.

One important issue is availability of stock and we make no apology for recommending against machines that are difficult to buy due to lengthy waiting lists.  On the other hand, if you are very patient and dont mind waiting, this particular issue may not be important for you.  You should know about it before making your decision though.

We are happy to include opinions and experience from all users so please feel free to contribute to this information resource.

 Cheers from Andrew and Leah Lane (Aussie Sapphire)

Minerama Field Trips 2008

Posted February 8, 2008 By Admin

The draft field trip program for Minerama has just been received from the field trip convenor – John Paix.  This is a draft version; we are always dependent on good weather conditions to run these or any other trips. The weather has been cooler and wetter this summer so far and it takes very little rain to make the creeks rise and areas to become inaccessible.

See the detailed trip instructions on the website for more information.

Remember – tickets are on sale at the rear of the services club where Minerama is held from 8 am Thursday 9th. Tickets are sold on a daily basis and are not available in advance. They will cost $10 for adults and $2 for school age children this year.

Thursday 6th March.
YARROW CREEK. (Garnet Corner) Sapphire, pyrope garnet, zircon, quartz crystal. This is a location we have visited during Minerama for several years. It has yielded good results and should continue to do so for those equipped with the right tools (especially yabby pumps, long handled shovels and crowbars). Many good sapphires and garnets have come from here.

Friday 7th March.
YARROW CREEK: (The Crossing) A location not previously visited on a Minerama trip. Minerals as for Garnet Corner. The proper tools are essential here.
KINGSGATE MINES: This is a rare opportunity to visit an active mining area, courtesy of the mining company. It is the classic location for quartz crystals and bismuth and molybdenite. There will be limited opportunities for collecting. Numbers will be limited to 20.
THREE WATERS on Reddestone Creek. This is a new area for Minerama. Reddestone Creek is rich in sapphire and zircon.

Saturday 8th March.
YARROW CREEK: (The Blockup) Another location on the creek. Minerals as for Garnet Corner.
LONEWOOD on Reddestone Creek. The same locality as the last three years. Some very fine sapphires and zircons have been found here.
EMMAVILLE area: A visit to old mining areas near Emmaville for mineral specimens.

Sunday 9th March.
YARROW CREEK: (The Old Mine area). Another location for sapphire, zircon, garnet and quartz
TINGHA SANDS AND STANNIFER: Classic localities for rutilated quartz (grass stone) and quartz jelly beans. Approximately 80 km drive each way.

MONDAY 10th March.
BACK CREEK: (Pinkett area) An area we have not visited for several years. Quartz crystal, sapphire, zircon, topaz and black tourmaline.
PRETTY VALLEY: A location we have been visiting since 1991 and still producing sapphire, zircon, topaz and excellent quartz. Anyone can find small gems here. Limited to 25 because of the small area involved and the limited water flow in the gully.

Network Upgrade

Posted February 4, 2008 By AussieSapphire

The network upgrade has been done with just the expected number of glitches being worked out now.  Orders are being received and processed normally so please feel free to purchase as you wish.  If you have any queries at all, please contact us by email or phone.

One unexpected development was the explosion reported on in the media this morning – this explosion severely damaged the office of our hosting company located directly above the takeaway food shop which was the source of the blast.

Luckily, the Net Logistics staff member on duty at the time escaped serious injury although he was taken to hospital suffering smoke inhalation.  The hosting company, while doing a great job of informing customers of these developments, have understandably had to cut back on phone support while they recover from the disaster.  This is causing a few delays while we iron out the last few bugs in the system but we are certainly glad the situation was not worse.

See here for coverage of the incident.

This photo was taken by Jonathon Chan (source: smh, see link above) – you can see the intensity of the fire. 

While it is somewhat frustrating to have a few tiny little website glitches at the moment from the server upgrade, it is events like these that make you count your blessings.  We send our best wishes to the many people who have had their homes and businesses completely disrupted – we hope you get back on track as soon as possible. 

cheers from Andrew and Leah Lane (www.aussiesapphire.com.au)