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Norm’s Tektite Teasers

An Indochinite flow-nose!

An Indochinite flow-nose!

This is the third time I have tried to present this stone in the Tektite Teasers column. I just haven’t been able to do it justice. It is really hard to get a pleasing photograph of this complex piece. In describing the challenge of trying to capture the essence of this gem in a photograph, […]

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Moldavite Rain!

Moldavite Rain!

There are all sorts of collections, but a collection of like objects offers the simple pleasure of side-by-side comparison and contrast. It offers training in the range of variations on a theme, and it begs you to select your favorites. Collections are meant to be felt. We have been running low on Moldavite teardrops and […]

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Atacamaites, Central Atacama Desert, Chile

Atacamaites, Central Atacama Desert, Chile

In the last edition I mentioned the new Atacamaite impact glass and promised a follow-up story. Here it is (largely drawn from our website). A couple of years ago word started to leak out of Chile regarding a new “tektite strewn field” in the central Atacama Desert. We have recently had the chance to examine […]

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Aouelloul Glass, Adrar, Mauritania

Aouelloul Glass, Adrar, Mauritania

The recent announcement of “tektites” in the Atacama forced me to revisit the criteria that distinguish tektites from other impact glasses. At both extremes are examples where there is solid consensus. This one is a tektite, but that one isn’t. Somewhere in between is a poorly described definitional boundary. I don’t intend to fight that […]

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A complete Australite detached flange ring!

A complete Australite detached flange ring!

Flanged Australite buttons are perhaps the most coveted tektite morphology that exists, and they are, indeed, glorious things. But they have an occasional offspring that is much, much rarer: the detached flange ring. The majority of Australites appear to have started atmospheric re-entry as spheres, which were always thermally modified in subsequent gravitationally-accelerated flight. Flanges […]

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A Splashform Muong-Nong Tektite??? !

A Splashform Muong-Nong Tektite??? !

A couple of years ago, we picked out this unusual specimen while sorting through bulk Chinese tektites at the big Tucson show. It was only recently that I realized just how unusual it really is. A conspicuously layered tektite with unambiguous splash-form flight modifications??? This is an oxymoron. Most descriptions of Muong Nong-type tektites will […]

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Alain Carion’s “New” Ivoirites

Alain Carion’s “New” Ivoirites

Ivory Coast tektites (“Ivoirites”) have long been the most difficult tektite to obtain. To say “impossible” would not be far off the mark. Only a few hundred have ever been recovered, and given their homeland’s propensity for war and strife, it has been decades since anyone has gone there with the purpose of searching for […]

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A Sweet Chlum Moldavite Dumbell

A Sweet Chlum Moldavite Dumbell

Over the years, we’ve only handled a few moldavite dumbells and even those were not great. Recently we were offered this gem by an Austrian collector (and we accepted!) 5.4 grams, Chlum, Czech Republic. A real beauty.

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Ločenice Moldavites; move over Besednice!

Ločenice Moldavites; move over Besednice!

This year at the big Tucson show, one of the Czech moldavite suppliers had a frame of stunningly beautiful specimens recently recovered from the Ločenice area, a few kilometers northwest of Besednice (Southern Bohemia, Czech Republic). Ločenice is a long-known locality that has been revisited and systematically searched in the last year or two resulting […]

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An Aussie Flanged Button Too Good to be True!

An Aussie Flanged Button Too Good to be True!

About 10 years ago I was approached by a guy that had just inherited a tektite collection that he wanted to liquidate. Included were about 20 Australite flanged buttons. Working from a photo, I selected about half of them and we made a deal. When they arrived I was astounded. They were better than any […]

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Egyptian Dakhleh Glass

Egyptian Dakhleh Glass

Find a map of Egypt and put a pin right in the center. You’ll find yourself in one of the most remote human settlements in Egypt, way out in the Western Desert about 400 kilometers west of Luxor and the Valley of the Kings. Dakhleh Oasis occupies the basin of an ancient lake, the site […]

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Deeply sculpted Bediasites

Deeply sculpted Bediasites

At 35.5 million years, Bediasites are by far the oldest surviving tektites that still retain a significant amount of their original glass. One might well expect that they should be deeply etched over their long history, and indeed, a few are. But the vast majority consist of relatively smooth, abraded pebbles, often with glassy chips. […]

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A Wabar Dumbell!

A Wabar Dumbell!

“—below me, as I stood on that hill-top transfixed, lay the twin craters, whose black walls stood up gauntly above the encroaching sand like the battlements and bastions of some great castle. These craters were respectively about 100 and 50 yards in diameter, sunken in the middle but half choked with sand, while inside and […]

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Atmospheric Time Capsules!

Atmospheric Time Capsules!

What are the chances of finding a sample of earth atmosphere that was sealed in a very high-purity glass capsule with centimeter thick walls 780,000 years ago? A pristine sample before mankind had done anything to modify the air—no industrial revolution, no nukes, and no fluorocarbons. Homo erectus was still struggling to tame a campfire. […]

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A folded Lei gong mo tektite

A folded Lei gong mo tektite

Every year after the big Tucson show, people ask : “what was your favorite tektite find ?” (We also look forward to this answer; we go to Tucson wondering what new treasure we will find!) Here it is. Tucson Tektite 2013. We spent days sorting through every box and bin of tektites we could find, […]

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