03 - April 2017

The Rockytier

April 2017
Volume 29 Number 4

General Meeting:

Tuesday - April 4th, 2017
Meet- 7:00 pm
@ Forrest Heights United Methodist Church 3007 33rd St. Lubbock, Texas.

Business Meeting:
Tuesday - April 11th, 2017
Eat- 6:00 pm
Meet- 7:00 pm
@ Red Zone Café  3602 Slide Rd. Unit B1 Lubbock, Texas


Monthly themes will be Birthstones. Any stones of the same (or very similar) color as the months birthstones.

April: Diamond 

*rules continued later in newsletter.
We are deeply saddened by the sudden passing of our long time club member and friend Bobby Housour. Bobby was hospitalized due to his illness since the 13th of March and was finally allowed to return home in the last few days of his life. He will be greatly missed at our club meetings and events. 

Please pass your respects and condolences on to his family.

Obituary for Robert Eugene Housour:

Robert passed away March 25, 2017.

Robert was born September 16, 1960 in Lubbock, TX to Henry and Gwendolyn Housour. Bobby attended Texas Tech as well as South Plains College, where he received his degree in Electrical Engineering Technology. He worked at T.I. in Dallas where he worked on the Harm Missile System and the super conducting super colliding system. He was very active on the Lubbock Gem and Mineral Society. He enjoyed helping people with their Lapidary and their Lapidary equipment.
Loved ones include his parents, Henry and Gwendolyn Housour; brother Jeffrey Allen and Rexford Henry; as well as aunts, uncles, nieces and nephews.
2017 Shows: 
Central Texas Gem & Mineral Society, Annual Show 8th-9th
Chihuahuan Desert Gem & Mineral Club, Annual Show 14th, 15th, 16th
Waco Gem and Mineral Club, Annual Show 29th-30th
Lubbock Gem & Mineral Society, Annual Show 6th-7th
Fort Worth Gem and Mineral Club, Annual Show 27th-28th

American Federation of Mineralogical Societies, Annual Convention & Show 9th-11th

From the President:
Wow, time has really slipped away from me this month, I feel like I can't keep up. The month of April will be very busy as well, here is a partial run down of upcoming things:

We have the display cases at the Mahon library to fill, so if you have not taken anything there to display yet, please help us fill them.

The Abilene Gem and Mineral Show is the 2nd weekend of April, see our calendar on our website for more specifics.

We will be co-hosting a meteorite talk at Texas Tech on the 21st, so if you are interested in learning about meteorites, please go check it out.

The Lubbock Arts Festival is on the 22nd and 23rd, come to the Civic Center and help us demonstrate our hobby, sign ups will be available at the next meeting.

Pre-Purchase tickets for our show in May will be available to club members at a discounted rate at the next club meeting, so bring some extra cash and get your friends some tickets in advance.

Our membership roster has dropped by more than half of our members from last year, if you have not renewed your membership, please do so as soon as possible, we need every one of you to help us maintain our membership. If there is a reason you are not planning on renewing, please talk to a board member and let us know why, we want this club to be a good experience for everyone. If there are things we need to improve upon, please help us do just that.

Have a great month!

Walt Beneze, LGMS President

Happy Birthday! 
7- Don Pendley
8- Sabrina Krieger
12- Mike Lease
17- Mondae Beneze
23- Bobbie Horn
27- Bob Honn

30- Mica McGuire
Happy Anniversary!
26-James & Janet Devine
26-Tim & Diane McIntier


My Diamond

"Diamonds are hard to mine, 
It was harder to find mine. 
Complex scrupulous arrangement of carbon atoms in sand,
that I still try to understand.”

Kaviraj Murugesan, http://hellopoetry.com/words/5062/diamonds/poems/ (excerpt) 

Tips of the Trade


When bezel setting a cab that has rather sharp corners, have you ever had problems pushing the metal down at the corners? It's a common problem often causing a wrinkle in your bezel and a grimace on your face.  

In order for a bezel to capture the stone, the top edge of the bezel must be compressed and become shorter to lay down onto the stone.  With a round or oval stone this naturally happens as you push and burnish the bezel. But when setting a stone with corners, the tendency is to push the long sides of the bezel down first. No compression occurs along the sides, and all excess metal is left at the corners. Compressing everything there is difficult. Often the only way to remove the extra metal at the corner is to make a saw cut and fold the two sides in to touch.

If you want a smooth bezel all around the corners, the simple solution is to set the corners of the bezel first. Then push in and burnish the sides.  In this way the necessary compression is distributed along the length of all sides and not forced to occur at the corners. With the corners set first, the top edge of the bezel can easily be compressed along the sides.
See all Brad's jewelry books at 


Most jewelers use a granular pickle mixed with water.  The active ingredient is sodium bisulfate. This can be purchased from local stores as a common pool chemical used for adjusting the acidity of the water. It's sold under various names, so be sure to check the list of active ingredients for a brand that is 95% or more sodium bisulfate.

An added benefit is that the pool chemical is more pure in form than what is sold for jewelry use and does not cause the brown grime often found floating on the top of the pot.
See all Brad's jewelry books at 


Gem and Mineral Facts

Diamonds have been admired for centuries, and some historians estimate it was traded as early as 4 BC. One of the reasons it is so admired and valued is because of the process by which a diamond must be formed well below the earth’s crust, then forced upward until it is uncovered.

But before this process was understood, many ancient civilizations believed that diamonds were lighting made real on earth. Perhaps this is the reason that diamonds have often been associated with great healing powers. Many thought the diamond could cure brain disease, alleviate pituitary gland disorders and draw toxins from the blood.

Historically, the diamond first became a popular gemstone in India, when the Moghuls and Imperial Colony easily mined diamonds from deposits along three major rivers. Today, the diamond is most widely known as the stone to give as part of an engagement ring.

Throughout history, however, the diamond has nearly always symbolized eternal and lasting love. So whether you’re getting engaged, or simply want to give yourself a truly meaningful gift, the diamond has both beauty and enduring symbolism.

from https://www.americangemsociety.org/en/diamond-birthstone-history

Here are 10 gemstone fun facts:

  1. Garnet was named after the seeds of a pomegranate.
  2. Amber is the softest gemstone; diamond is the hardest.
  3. The largest diamond found in the United States, to date, is known as the Uncle Sam Diamond.
  4. It takes anywhere from one to three years to grow a cultured pearl.
  5. The Queen of England's jewelry collection is worth an estimated $57 million dollars.
  6. In the Middle Ages, women would wear Opals to protect the color of their blonde hair.
  7. Peridot was Cleopatra's favorite gemstone.
  8. After millions upon millions of years, it is assumed that the Sun will become one large diamond-star!
  9. The Heart of the Ocean, from James Cameron's "Titanic" was not completely fictitious - it is believed that a rather large sapphire went down with Titanic on that fateful night.
  10. One of the largest sapphires is known as the Star of Asia, which is currently housed at the Smithsonian Museum of Natural History.
This entry was posted on September 6, 2011 by Day's Jewelers.

Campus talks on Friday, April 21 co-sponsored by the Texas Tech Geoscience Society and the Lubbock Gem and Mineral Society.

The Texas Tech Geoscience Society and the Lubbock Gem and Mineral Society are bringing Dr. T. David Burleigh to Lubbock on April 21st to speak about meteorites. At 4:30 there will be a more academic talk describing the metallurgy of meteorites, and at 7:30 there will be a more general talk describing the types of meteorites, and their impact on mankind. Both talks will be in the Senate room of the Student Union, admission is free, and both talks are open to the public.

T. David Burleigh is a Professor of Materials & Metallurgical Engineering at New Mexico Tech.  He earned both his M.Sc. and Ph.D. degrees from M.I.T. in Metallurgy, and is a registered Professional Engineer in Metallurgy in New Mexico.  Two decades ago he developed a fascination with meteorites, especially the iron-nickel ones. For years, Dr. Burleigh has shared his passion by giving public talks on meteorites. Dr. Burleigh will bring several meteorites to his talks. The public is invited to bring materials they suspect may be a meteorite, and Dr. Burleigh will give his opinion.
The rules for the JALAF are:
Participants will remain beginners for one year from the month in which they enter their first piece in each category. At the end of one year the participant will be considered experienced in the categories they have entered. The JALAF master will attempt to keep records, but we will operate on an honor system as well.

We want to share and learn from the knowledge you acquired while finding, working or setting the piece, so please come prepared to tell us what you know (don’t worry if you don’t know what you have, hopefully someone can tell you)! The JALAF is open to Members, Juniors and Visitors.

We REALLY WANT and STRONGLY encourage ALL to bring pieces that fit the month’s theme, even if they are not eligible for entry because they do not meet the criteria or have previously won a feather. These pieces will be entered as display only, and will not be part of that month’s competition. PLEASE share your expertise and adventures with the rest of us.


Two levels in each category:

Specimens and Fossils: YOU must have found OR worked an otherwise acquired specimen.
Cabochons, Carvings and Facets: YOU must have created the piece yourself.
Jewelry: YOU must have created the setting OR worked the stone.

Since some months have more than one birthstone, we will be going by the American Gem Society list, found at:

Here is hoping everyone will compete and have fun!

Next Meetings
General: April 4th
Business: April 11th

Lubbock Gem & Mineral Society
Member of South Central Federation of Mineral Societies
Member of American Federation of Mineralogical Societie

THE ROCKYTIER is the official Bulletin of the Lubbock Gem and Mineral Society, Box 6371, Lubbock, TX. 79493. Meetings are held the first Tuesday of each month @ Forrest Heights United Methodist Church - 3007 33rd St. Lubbock, TX. at 7:00 p.m. unless announced otherwise. Annual dues are: $22.50 for adults, $10.00 for students 15 & up, $5.00 for students 6-15 and free for children under 6. Exchange editors are free to copy anything of interest from THE ROCKYTIER provided credit is given to the author of the article and THE ROCKYTIER.

The purpose of the Lubbock Gem and Mineral Society shall be:
(1) to bring about a closer association of those persons interested in the Earth Sciences and Lapidary Arts;
(2) to increase and disseminated knowledge about rocks, minerals, fossils and other geological materials;
(3) to encourage the study of rocks, minerals, fossils, artifacts, collecting and lapidary work and
(4) to conduct meetings, lectures, displays and field trips.

    President     Walter Beneze (806)797-5832  
    Past President     Bobbie Horn (806) 786-9362  
    Vice President     Michael Zink (806) 451-0039  
    Secetary     Sabrina Kreiger (806) 891-0165  
    Treasurer     Charles Cockrell (806) 786-6895  
  Director (first year)
    Sabrina Kreiger
(806) 891-0165  
Director (second year)  
  Valerie Zink (806) 451-0038  
    Director (second year)   Mica McGuire (806) 445-6859  
    Education Chairperson Club Michael Zink (806) 451-0039  
    Education Chairperson M.E.W. Greg Roberts (806) 787-6262  
    Show Chairperson   Walter Beneze (806) 797-5832  
    Newsletter Editor   Mica McGuire (806) 445-6859  
    Field Trip Chairperson   volenteer needed      
    Benevolence     volenteer needed      
    Web Master     Walter Beneze (806) 797-5832  
    Club Vests     volenteer needed      
    Club Library     Dave Swartz (806) 793-8045  
    There are many more positions that need a volenteer, please consider what
    you can do to help!            
Lubbock Gem & Mineral Society is a non-profit organization recognized under section 501(C)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code as an educational entity. Donations in any form are tax deductible as outlined by the IRS.
Click here to visit the LGMS website

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Our mailing address is:
The Lubbock Gem and Mineral Society
PO Box 6371
Lubbock, TX 79493

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