default avatar
Welcome to the site! Login or Signup below.
Logout|My Dashboard

Polishing, cutting and making rocks sparkle

Font Size:
Default font size
Larger font size

Related Business

Related YouTube Video

Posted: Saturday, September 28, 2013 11:39 pm | Updated: 7:25 am, Mon Sep 30, 2013.

With a keen eye and steady hands, Michael Moreno found a fault line on a fist sized geode. He slid the rock up against a spinning ten inch blade trimmed in diamond. A sharp grinding noise filled the air as the blade forced two halves of the stone apart, revealing a crystallized universe within. 

Moreno is a member of the Stockton Lapidary and Mineral Club and one of many vendors and craftsmen who set up at the Lodi Grape Festival Grounds on Saturday and Sunday.

The 62nd annual Earth’s Treasures event was a combination of gem and mineral presentations, mini gem and stonework shops, and demonstrations on wire wrapping jewelry and creating knife blades from glass. 

The club was joined by the Delta Gold Diggers mining club and the World of Wonders Science Museum for kid-friendly activities like panning for gold flecks. 

Inside, Dick Friesen labored over a spinning drill, carving, sanding and polishing  stones to make miniature designs. It can take up to ten hours per square inch to complete the intricate projects. 

“That’s one pass,” he said, sliding a jade green fragment under the spinning blade. “There’s still a long way to go.”

Dian Gaudner was polishing scratches off a quartz gem. Her goal? Create shimmering facets on the stone so the light bounces throughout to add sparkle. A small collection of her work rested in a jewelry tray.

“Most of those started as marbles,” she said. 

Margaret Kolaczyk twisted long thin wires around and around a small stone. A display of chainmail and linked circle jewelry lay before her on a table. She’s worked on her craft since 1997, and can make mail strong enough to stop a knife blade. 

Down the hall, Jack Hall used a copper tool to chip bits off a slab of volcanic glass he was fashioning into a knife. 

“They’ll break easy, but they’re pretty sharp,” he said, applying pressure at key points to crack the glass. A display case held knives made of green and red glass. Hall likes to sit out on hiking trails, working on a blade, and show the technique to passing hikers. If someone is interested, he’ll fashion them an arrowhead. 

“This is something that you pass on to people,” he said. 

Contact Sara Jane Pohlman at sarap@lodinews.com

More about

Rules of Conduct

  • 1 Use your real name. You must register with your full first and last name before you can comment. (And don't pretend you're someone else.)
  • 2 Keep it clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually oriented language.
  • 3 Don't threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
  • 4 Be truthful. Don't lie about anyone or anything. Don't post unsubstantiated allegations, rumors or gossip that could harm the reputation of a person, company or organization.
  • 5 Be nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
  • 6 Stay on topic. Make sure your comments are about the story. Don't insult each other.
  • 7 Tell us if the discussion is getting out of hand. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
  • 8 Share what you know, and ask about what you don't.

Welcome to the discussion.


Popular Stories


Should graduations return to the Grape Bowl?

Lodi Unified leaders are moving Lodi and Tokay high school graduations from the Grape Bowl to the Spanos Center at UOP in Stockton. They cite limited seating, costs and unpredictable weather at the Grape Bowl. But others say graduations at the Grape Bowl are an important Lodi tradition, and one reason many supported renovating the stadium. What do you think?

Total Votes: 98


Mailing List

Subscribe to a mailing list to have daily news sent directly to your inbox.

  • Breaking News

    Would you like to receive breaking news alerts? Sign up now!

  • News Updates

    Would you like to receive our daily news headlines? Sign up now!

  • Sports Updates

    Would you like to receive our daily sports headlines? Sign up now!

Manage Your Lists