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Monday, November 15, 2010

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Diamond Cutting

Chunks of diamond eventually become small, perfectly shaped gemstones commonly used in engagement rings and other jewelry. Since diamond is the hardest known substance, diamond dust must be used to cut the stone. In cutting, a minuscule groove is incised into the surface of the diamond, and a cleaving iron is inserted into the groove. With a quick, forceful blow, the diamond should split perfectly along its naturally occurring planes. The lapidary determines further cuts by marking them off on the surface with ink. Next, a diamond saw, oiled with the unusual combination of diamond dust and olive oil, is rotated vertically on the surface of the raw gem. This device divides the diamond into new segments. These parts are then fed into a lathe-like device for grinding.

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