• Created By : 20-Apr-2017
  • Write By: tmmadmin
  • Published In: ROOT
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Chalcopyrite is a brassy yellow mineral with the chemical composition CuFeS2, or copper iron sulfide. It is found in most sulfide mineral deposits around the world. Chalcopyrite loses its surface metallic luster and brass-yellow color when it weathers, changing to a dull, gray-green color. When acids are present, the color can become brilliantly iridescent purple, violet, blue or green. Chalcopyrite is most easily recognized by its brassy yellow color, metallic luster, and high specific gravity, which give it an appearance similar to pyrite and gold. Unlike these minerals, chalcopyrite is brittle and has a unique greenish-gray streak, and unlike pyrite, is easily scratched with a nail.

  • Are you a passionate field collector?
  • Have you always wanted to become a professional specimen miner?
  • Would you like the opportunity to dig at world-class mineral localities?
  • Would you enjoy learning how to drill and blast?
  • Would you like to be paid to clean out pockets full of beautiful crystals?


  • Created By : 18-Mar-2017
  • Write By: tmmadmin
  • Published In: Mineral Show Reports
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by Eric Greene

We have been going to Tucson for almost 20 years now, and I will remember this year's show for its cool temperatures and hot prices. We arrived in Tucson January 24, departing after a harrowing drive through a sleet and ice storm to get to the airport for a 6:30 AM flight. We arrived in Tucson to find cool temperatures in the 40s and low 50s, with frost every morning the first week we were there. Though the sun shone most of the time, it struggled to warm up to the 60s and didn't hit 70 until our last few days in town. Uncharacteristically, I never put on a pair of shorts, and didn't even wear a short-sleeved shirt until our last 2 days.

But enough about the weather, and on to the mineral prices. I admit that after last year's show I was expecting that specimen prices would come tumbling down this year for the first time in memory, after the run of steady increases that have been the hallmark of mineral prices for decades. In this I was largely disappointed. Fortunately, there were signs of downward creep if you looked hard and long enough – and I did look hard and long to find some great bargains!

  • Created By : 16-Mar-2017
  • Write By: tmmadmin
  • Published In: Mineral Show Reports
  • Hits: 297
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I still can barely believe how many new, colorful, and exciting specimens we brought home from the Tucson Show this year; this made picking out my favorites really difficult. Here are the new specimens which I love that I think are significant and highly aesthetic. They will give you an idea of what we found. If you are interested in any of these specimens, just click on the "for sale" links to go to the pages in our website where you will find that piece for sale. 

  • Created By : 13-Jan-2017
  • Write By: tmmadmin
  • Published In: Mineral Species
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1.5" Fine Gemmy Green FLUORAPATITE Sharp Terminated Crystal Panasquiera

The name apatite comes from the Greek word apatein, meaning to deceive, because of its similarity to so many other minerals. Ironically, it is actually 3 different minerals, and the precise species of this phosphate mineral depends on which of 3 ions is predominant:

  • If fluorine is the primary ion, then it is fluorapatite - Ca5(PO4)3F
  • If chlorine is the main ion, then it is chlorapatite - Ca5(PO4)3Cl
  • If the hydroxyl group is dominant, then it is hydroxylapatite - Ca5(PO4)3OH

However, in the crystal lattice these ions can substitute freely, so all 3 are typically present in any one specimen, making it impossible to distinguish them without x-ray diffraction or other analytical methods. Most collector forms of apatite are fluorapatite.

Apatite is the most common phosphate mineral. It is the primary source for phosphorus, a fertilizer required for plant growth. Also, the teeth and bones of humans and most animals, are composed of hydroxylapatite.

  • Created By : 02-Dec-2016
  • Write By: tmmadmin
  • Published In: Your Collection
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Some, but not many of us mineral collectors are blessed with unlimited space to display and store our mineral collections. Even in our 13-room house, we don't have space for everthing (and Jeanne has a rule: no mineral specimens in the part of the house we live in!). So, like other factors to consider in building a mineral collection (color, quality, species, locality, etc.), size does matter, and collectors must think about what size they want to collect. For example, consider this: you can display 1,000 thumbnail-sized specimens in the the space required to keep 50 hand-sized specimens. That certainly puts it in perspective!

Here are the names for the different sizes that I use as "standards".