Opals

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Opals I - Cheryl Kasper
You will learn about various types of opals, how to cut and polish opal, how to read a stone before and during cutting, what makes opal precious, how opal forms, the equipment and supplies used to cut, treatments, care and tips for setting opals, opal evaluation and why opal is such a unique and mysterious gemstone. Opals, books and supplies will be available for purchase. You are invited to bring your own opal, as well. No prior experience is required. Lab fee covers a guide with information about opals, supplemental handouts, access to plenty of free practice opal rough, miscellaneous supplies needed to complete work in class and an opal kit that includes approximately eight pieces of opal rough from around the world, both common (about five pieces) and precious (about two or three pieces) chosen to help you learn during class.

Lab Fee: $70.00
Estimated Materials Cost: $0+
Consumables Fee: $15.00
Prerequisites: None

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Opals I - Sarah Lee Boyce
Sarah Lee has been teaching since the early 1990’s. She teaches for the Gem and mineral club and at her home outside of Charlotte, NC and at William Holland where she teaches a structured fourteen-step method for opal cutting, which she created because the opal rough can be very unforgiving, and the play of color needs to be released very slowly.  In class the students will receive a kit containing a variety of 8 opals, as well as triplet and doublet material. The lab fee covers the 10-piece kit, handouts and miscellaneous supplies.

Lab Fee: $70.00
Estimated Materials Cost: $40+
Consumables Fee: $15.00
Prerequisites: None

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Opals I - Common, Mexican and Bolder Opal Only - Gary Calvert
This class will use Common, Mexican and Bolder Opals only. Designed as a beginner class, starting with beautiful “common opal” in several colors, then onto Mexican and Bolder Opal. Kit included in lab fee. No previous class requirements, but you must wear eye protection: glasses or an OptiVISOR.

Lab Fee: $60.00
Estimated Materials Cost: $20+
Consumables Fee: $15.00
Prerequisites: None

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Opals I - Precious Opal Only - Gary Calvert
This class will use Precious Opals only, starting with larger pieces and working to smaller higher-grade precious Opal. Kit included in lab fee (kit pieces are all Australian Opal from Coober Pedy, Mintabie and Lightning Ridge). No previous class requirements, but you must wear eye protection: glasses or an OptiVISOR.

Lab Fee: $70.00
Estimated Materials Cost: $20+
Consumables Fee: $15.00
Prerequisites: None

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Opals II - Sarah Lee Boyce
In response to requests from former students, Sarah Lee is offering a master class in opals in which students will work with their own stash of opals. Students will be taught how to make a mosaic, floating pendants and earrings by using small opal chips, which would otherwise be thrown away.  The lab fee covers the chips, frames for the mosaic, and glass vessels for the floating pendants, earrings and miscellaneous supplies

Lab Fee: $70.00
Estimated Materials Cost: $40+
Consumables Fee: $15.00
Prerequisites: Opals I from Sarah Lee

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Opals II - Lightning Ridge Opal - Cheryl Kasper
Opals from Lightning Ridge can be intriguing, complicated and fickle. If you like to think outside the oval and are willing to let the stone reveal its mystery, then this class is for you. Focus will be on Lightning Ridge opals, especially black. We will examine the mining process, how the geology of the area can drastically alter opals, and how to approach them. We will build knowledge and skill in stone analysis and discovery, and discuss basic wheel carving, opals fossils and tips for purchasing rough. Opals of all prices, ranges and types, books and supplies will be available for purchase. Students typically spend $100 to $400 on additional materials to cut in class or take home, but this is not required. You are welcome to bring your own Lightning Ridge material that you find challenging or would like to discuss. Lab fee covers advanced student guide, supplemental handouts, a basic opal fossil specimen, miscellaneous supplies needed to complete work in class and an opal kit that includes five pieces of Lightning Ridge opal rough chosen to help you learn (they will vary in character and value and may include basic barred/pattern potch, crystal, knobby, picture stone, and grey/black with color).

Lab Fee: $70.00
Estimated Materials Cost: $0-$400
Consumables Fee: $15.00
Prerequisites: Opals I

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Opals III - Sarah Lee Boyce
We will use the freeform flow method for carving opals. You may bring your own flex shaft or Dremel. All carving bits and burs will be provided with opals and other equipment and materials to complete the carvings. The lab fee includes all materials.

Lab Fee: $70.00
Estimated Materials Cost: $40+
Consumables Fee: $15.00
Prerequisites: Opals II from Sarah Lee

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Opals III - Opal Carving - Cheryl Kasper
We will focus on removing the problem areas from Lightning Ridge material and revealing the beauty hidden underneath. Working with the Pixie and wheel carving, we will expand to a finer level of detail with the micromotor/Flexshaft and other carving tools. Lab fee includes two opals to carve and the use of instructors carving equipment.

Lab Fee: $100.00
Estimated Materials Cost: $40+
Consumables Fee: $15.00
Prerequisites: Opals II Lightning Ridge from Cheryl Kasper or permission of instructor.

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