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Hi All,

I am a real newbie here but really getting interested in marbles. Have been buying them at estate sales for years

because they look so interesting. The more I buy, the more I seem to want more!

Being a newbie, I have noticed some terms that I am not familiar with. They include:

mib; subsurface moons; tweezered off & pontils. Could someone help me out here with these terms?

Along that same line, my main vice is making rock spheres from 1/2" to bowling ball size, usually out of Agate.

Although any rock without cracks(minor flaws are OK) are suitable for making a sphere.

With rock, one needs to use a silicon carbide grit with a water drip.

To get an excellent polish on the harder type rocks, one needs to use a diamond paste

towards the last polishing stages.

I have all 3 head grinding machines which gives nearly a perfect roundness when finished compared to 2 head machines.

Would the diamond paste use on smaller marbles in restoring them work with my machine methods?

Thank you.

Bob

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Hi Bob, and welcome to the Marble Connection! I am fairly new as well, and you will find, the more you learn, the more you learn you don't know. lol If that makes any sense. Just send me all your good mibs (marbles) and I'll teach you what I know! lol Just kidding, marbles are just wonderful pieces of art and like you, I just can't get enough of them.

The very next thing you should do is pick up some books on marbles, Grist's big book of Marbles, Collecting Machine Made marbles, and any books by Steve Sturtz will teach you a ton about Jabo Vitro and the recent collector/investor runs that have been done recently. Keep in mind that the books are just a guide and have no where near the information you are going to want, but they give you the basics. A wise gentlemen told me that marble collecting can be summed up in a few short words. "If you like it, buy it."

There are some mibs out there that are done right ugly but because of their rarity, they can fetch a fair price. I say fair, because prices have been falling as of late. No doubt they will pick up again someday but it really is a buyers market for mibs right now. With a few exceptions, but not many. Even the pricey box sets aren't fetching what they once did. The bubble has burst, and the market is reflecting a more down to earth price, but that's just my opinion. And we all know about opinions. lol

I am excited to hear about your three headed monster! That is just awesome, but you will find that their are collectors out there that shy away from that sort of thing. Only because of some unscrupulous charators out there that will polish an old mib, and try to sell it as original, unpolished and mint. Most of the collectors that have been in this circle for awhile can tell the difference but new comers like me, simply don't have the knowledge to distinguish between the two and can, and are, taken advantage of by the shiasters. If you polish old mibs with the intention of selling them, just let the buyer know they have been tweaked and shined up like a new penny and you will not only make friends, but you may earn some respect from the guys and gals that have been doing this for awhile.

Attend as many marble shows as you can possibly make it to, the people are great and to sit down and talk with them is just what the doctor ordered. You can learn alot from these shows and also you can buy alot! :) which is always fun. I have yet to get to a show but have gotten down to the Jabo factory for a run of mibs that was just wonderful. If you like Jabo mibs, and you can afford to get involved in a run, by all means, and I would recommend this to anyone out there, go for it! It's a world of fun, knowledge and marbles! What more could you ask for! :) Just one more thing before I go to bed.

If you don't know, ask. You may not get the answer you were hoping for, or wanting but you'll get an answer. It will take you some time but you will find out who to turn to with questions and help. There are alot of good people out there collecting marbles, but unfortunately there is a handful of bad apples. You'll sort them out quickly, as I have, because you will know them by their fruits. If that makes any sense. lol

Bob, I wish you well. If you have any questions I can help with, I am more than happy to answer or find the answer with you.

Again, welcome to the club! God bless.

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Hi Bob, and welcome to the Marble Connection! I am fairly new as well, and you will find, the more you learn, the more you learn you don't know. lol If that makes any sense. Just send me all your good mibs (marbles) and I'll teach you what I know! lol Just kidding, marbles are just wonderful pieces of art and like you, I just can't get enough of them.

The very next thing you should do is pick up some books on marbles, Grist's big book of Marbles, Collecting Machine Made marbles, and any books by Steve Sturtz will teach you a ton about Jabo Vitro and the recent collector/investor runs that have been done recently. Keep in mind that the books are just a guide and have no where near the information you are going to want, but they give you the basics. A wise gentlemen told me that marble collecting can be summed up in a few short words. "If you like it, buy it."

There are some mibs out there that are done right ugly but because of their rarity, they can fetch a fair price. I say fair, because prices have been falling as of late. No doubt they will pick up again someday but it really is a buyers market for mibs right now. With a few exceptions, but not many. Even the pricey box sets aren't fetching what they once did. The bubble has burst, and the market is reflecting a more down to earth price, but that's just my opinion. And we all know about opinions. lol

I am excited to hear about your three headed monster! That is just awesome, but you will find that their are collectors out there that shy away from that sort of thing. Only because of some unscrupulous charators out there that will polish an old mib, and try to sell it as original, unpolished and mint. Most of the collectors that have been in this circle for awhile can tell the difference but new comers like me, simply don't have the knowledge to distinguish between the two and can, and are, taken advantage of by the shiasters. If you polish old mibs with the intention of selling them, just let the buyer know they have been tweaked and shined up like a new penny and you will not only make friends, but you may earn some respect from the guys and gals that have been doing this for awhile.

Attend as many marble shows as you can possibly make it to, the people are great and to sit down and talk with them is just what the doctor ordered. You can learn alot from these shows and also you can buy alot! :) which is always fun. I have yet to get to a show but have gotten down to the Jabo factory for a run of mibs that was just wonderful. If you like Jabo mibs, and you can afford to get involved in a run, by all means, and I would recommend this to anyone out there, go for it! It's a world of fun, knowledge and marbles! What more could you ask for! :) Just one more thing before I go to bed.

If you don't know, ask. You may not get the answer you were hoping for, or wanting but you'll get an answer. It will take you some time but you will find out who to turn to with questions and help. There are alot of good people out there collecting marbles, but unfortunately there is a handful of bad apples. You'll sort them out quickly, as I have, because you will know them by their fruits. If that makes any sense. lol

Bob, I wish you well. If you have any questions I can help with, I am more than happy to answer or find the answer with you.

Again, welcome to the club! God bless.

So many thanks for the information. I am learning but may take a while.

I did find the Marble Glossary, very interesting. Mib = Marble, I thought it was a new marble in the box! :rolleyes:

I sell and buy a lot of rocks & minerals on Ebay. Sounds like the bad apples dealing in marbles are like those dealing in rocks. Sure some unscrupulous sellers out there. I know you sure have to watch what you are doing when buying.

I have made some 1" clear quartz marbles with rutile in them. I'll have to post some pics when I figure that maneuver out.

Again thanks.

Bob

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Awesome skills there. That must be wonderful just to hold and gaze at.

A subsurface moon would be a circular impact point that seems to be just below the surface. There's a fracture but no missing glass. The FAQ at Marblealan's site talks about different kinds of damage: http://marblealan.com/FAQ.htm .

Tweezered off? I don't know. :huh:

I don't know the answer to this question about diamond paste either. But I want to highlight it again so it won't get lost. :-)

I have all 3 head grinding machines which gives nearly a perfect roundness when finished compared to 2 head machines.

Would the diamond paste use on smaller marbles in restoring them work with my machine methods?

Thank you.

Bob

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Its interesting that you mention that you make "bowling ball size" spheres of agate because I just bought one, an onyx 10", recently. I was wondering if the price I paid was a good one because I thought it was. Its the green with brown,rust coloring type of onyx, kind of a common type. I paid $160 for it and lugged it home. Was that a good price? As a marble collector of many years, I have always wanted one of these huge spheres but I had always seen them at over $300, so I jumped at this one.

Thanks,

Phil

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Its interesting that you mention that you make "bowling ball size" spheres of agate because I just bought one, an onyx 10", recently. I was wondering if the price I paid was a good one because I thought it was. Its the green with brown,rust coloring type of onyx, kind of a common type. I paid $160 for it and lugged it home. Was that a good price? As a marble collector of many years, I have always wanted one of these huge spheres but I had always seen them at over $300, so I jumped at this one.

Thanks,

Phil

Selbram,

An onyx 10" for $160, you got a terrific terrific bargain! A chunk of Onyx in the rough alone at that size would command the price you paid for a finished sphere, not to mention the time and grit it would have taken to make that. The steps leading up to just getting a chunk of rough ready for the grinder is very time consuming.

Here is a larger marble type sphere recently finished. It measures 2 3/4" across and is made out of Alabaster with black inclusion highlights. It is a material that is readily available in my area.

I believe I am going to try rejuvenating a pitted marble and see how it comes out. Thanks for all the help people.

Bob

200906230544738.JPG

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Hello Bob,

I am known as the marblemender as I have and do recondition hurt marbles. From what you have posted I use the same kind of machines as you do (three headed). Most but not all marbles can be reconditioned by grinding all the impacts and damage from the surface and than taking them on through the pre-polish and final polish using the same steps as I'm sure that you do. The compounds that I use are number 220 Graded Silicon Carbide for grinding out the damage. Than I use the number 1000 for pre-polish and than onto the final polish using Raybrite A 0.5 micron alumina. This is what I have used for years and it works just fine for marbles and agates. I will be happy to share any information that I have on reconditioning marbles if you will email me at [email protected] ----Leroy----P.S. I stopped using water drip several years ago and use another method instead which I'll be glad to share with you.

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For antique marbles you should get Paul Bauman's book -- no other ones are as informative on the subject. The most recent edition is usually available on ebay or through amazon.com.

Ann

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Selbram,

An onyx 10" for $160, you got a terrific terrific bargain! A chunk of Onyx in the rough alone at that size would command the price you paid for a finished sphere, not to mention the time and grit it would have taken to make that. The steps leading up to just getting a chunk of rough ready for the grinder is very time consuming.

Here is a larger marble type sphere recently finished. It measures 2 3/4" across and is made out of Alabaster with black inclusion highlights. It is a material that is readily available in my area.

I believe I am going to try rejuvenating a pitted marble and see how it comes out. Thanks for all the help people.

Bob

200906230544738.JPG

Thanks, my wife will be very happy!!

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For antique marbles you should get Paul Bauman's book -- no other ones are as informative on the subject. The most recent edition is usually available on ebay or through amazon.com.

Ann

[/quote

Thank you very much Ann.

I will do just that.

I am more than willing to learn about marbles.

I think they are fascinating!

Bob

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