You will find us located in the heart of the busy mining town of Lightning Ridge, New South Wales, approx. 750 km or 468 miles, north west of Sydney, Australia. Lightning Ridge, or'the Ridge', as it is fondly referred to by locals, is renowned for the largest production of quality Black Opal in the World!
The illusory mystique of'The Ridge' has lured many a hopeful miner over the past 100 years to try their luck at finding the "big one". While some lucky miners have fortuitously struck it rich, others continue the search resolute in there quest for that elusive prize: top quality "red on black". SHOULD YOU VISIT THE RIDGE BE SURE TO VIEW OUR DISPLAY ROOM AT 66 MORILLA ST, LIGHTNING RIDGE, NSW 2834, AUSTRALIA. WE LOOK FORWARD TO MEETING YOU. Here are some images of our mining activity.Prospecting Drill and the Underground Digger. We prospect for opal with a 9 inch auger drill.
When promising material is discovered we drill a 3 foot diameter shaft to a depth that bottoms on the opal bearing level. When, what appears to be payable material is found, we lower a mechanical digger down the shaft.
Truck and blower then into the Agies. The dirt is extracted by a "blower" which, in reality, is more akin to a giant vacuum cleaner. When the truck is full, it is taken to an "agitator"- a modified cement mixer where the extracted dirt is washed for the duration of the weeks mining activity. Up to 10 truckloads of dirt go into each batch of wash, which accumulates and wears down to a much smaller concentrate by the end of the week.
Rough Opals from the Tailings. Then, we manually sort through the concentrated tailing and pick out the gems, often none, but once every few years hard work is rewarded by discovering a pocket of truly beautiful gems. Then it is off to the cutting and polishing room.
We hope we can welcome you to our unique town one day! We can also meet you at the Tucson PUEBLO Gem & Minaral Show- Absolute Opals Booth # 32 every year late January early February as well. Is important for the growth of all reputable opal sellers. We pride ourselves by doing our best to provide an excellent product and service to all our customers. Take extra care with our packing to help ensure the safe arrival of your items.
ECheques take a minimum of 5 days to clear. The amount of time spent in transit within the postal system is outside of our control. Normally "the stone appears larger in the photo than in reality" This is because a 10mm stone will show in the item listing photo as a 100mm stone on an average size laptop screen. Please check in the "item specifics" section for the actual dimensions of all listed items.
It is difficult to achieve total accuracy in representing opal with digital photography for the following reasons. The human eye sees objects slightly differently to that of the digital camera because of the different mechanisms involved with how they register light. Each person's eyes see a little differently to the next persons eyes. There is a tendency for variation in many computer screens that are manufactured and calibrated a little differently to their competitor products. Example; a LED screen will have a lot more contrast than a Laptop Screen.
The opal colours and patterns as seen in actuality are a result of a complex combination of refraction, diffraction, diffusion and reflection of light from the opal structure. When an opal is viewed with different light sources and different light intensities the effect of the stone can change a little from one light source to the other.The total aggregated combination of these facts means there will be some degree of inaccuracy when representing opal with digital photography. To compensate for these factors I like to list our products by including still photos and a movie with all care and techniques applied to represent the item as accurately as possible. THESE AT COST PRICES ARE CALCULATED AT AVERAGE COST WITH INFORMATION DIRECTLY FROM AUSTRALIA POST. TO OFFER THE BEST AND FAIREST PRICE, WE CHARGE THE AVERAGE, SOMETIMES WINNING A LITTLE AND SOMETIMES LOSING A LITTLE. G "REGISTERED" INSTEAD OF "STANDARD" PLEASE MESSAGE THIS REQUEST TO US BEFORE PAYING AND WE CAN MAKE THESE CHANGES, (WITH THE SAME CALCULATION AS OUTLINED ABOVE), TO YOUR INVOICE. We strive to comply with our obligations in accordance with the Privacy Act 1988 (Commonwealth). We shall ensure that any of your personal information collected is only used for the purposes of order processing and providing you with requested or obligatory information. If you are not satisfied with your item please return it in its' original condition within 30 days of receiving it. Listing and template services provided by inkFrog. This item is in the category "Jewellery & Watches\Loose Diamonds & Gemstones\Loose Gemstones". The seller is "absolutely-love-opals" and is located in this country: AU. This item can be shipped worldwide.