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07 Feb 2017
Geode
Seems like I'm always getting calls from folks asking "How can I crack a geode open without breaking it into small pieces?" Well, there are a variety of the way, good quality and some not too good. Here, I'll outline four of the most common ways. [By the way, it's a good idea to make use of safety goggles whenever you start banging away at a rock.]

gem and mineral
1) Diamond Saw - Should you be fortunate enough to have a large diamond saw, or know someone that owns one, you can saw the geodes in two. This works best when there is cigerettes to carry the specimen. You can cut the geode open and end up getting two halves having a smooth face on each. (But not everyone has diamond jewelry saw....)

2) Another way of opening geodes that works well, (the technique I use usually) is to crack the geode open by having an traditional cast-iron plumbing pipe cutter. This can be a tool that plumbers accustomed to use within doing plumbing in homes once they caused the surefire plumbing pipes. (Homes built just before about 35 years back.) I have one of these tools that I use to break geodes open and most of the time I can break them with two matching halves. This really does a great job.

Maybe you have seen show dealers which were breaking geodes open with one of these tools. The tool includes a chain at the business end with links like a bicycle chain, and in this chain you will find round carbide rollers with sharp edges on them.

To break the geode open, you simply wrap the chain, using the carbide rollers, around the geode, and fasten it into a notch in the tool and press recorded on the handle. This constricts the chain round the geode evenly all around and squeezes to where it breaks the geode open into two halves. I received my surefire plumbing pipe cutter from a retired plumber here locally. If you're going to break lots of geodes you may want to acquire one.

3) Hammer and chisel. Most folks don't have a diamond saw or plumbing pipe cutter, and just wish to break a couple of geodes open. Well, you can do an excellent job with a hammer and cold chisel. I did it a number of times and delay pills work well. Take your hammer, cold chisel and geodes outside high is really a concrete walk, driveway, steps, etc., in other words a hard surface. I would not test the fit a wooden surface. And you almost need three hands to get this done. Put the geode around the concrete and hold it around the sides with one hand, then hold the cold chisel on top of the geode and strike it LIGHTLY with your hammer. Create break it open now.... Rotate the geode about a 1 / 2 inch, place the chisel in line with where you just hit it and strike the chisel again ... LIGHTLY. Do that all the way around the biggest area of the geode. By the time you have hit the chisel inside a line all the way around the geode, it should be prepared to open. If the geode hasn't broken open at this point, start round the circumference again, punching the geode with the cold chisel in a straight line. Strike the chisel just a little harder this time around. This can be a little slow, however if you simply still do it and do not enter too large a rush, you should be able to break the geode open into two halves that you can fit together again where you cannot tell where it was broken.

4) Hammer - Obviously you can strike the geode repeatedly using the hammer until it breaks open, but, it probably will end up in a few pieces. A bad method!


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