About The Stabilization Treatment For Turquoise Gems
Even if you have not heard of stabilized turquoise, it is very likely that your turquoise gemstones have been treated with the stabilization process. So what exactly is stabilized turquoise, we will talk about this right now. Before we discuss about turquoise treatment with the stabilization process, we will need to understand why this process is necessary. It is also interesting to note that, most people with knowledge of gemstones agree that stabilizing turquoise is acceptable.
Turquoise in it's natural form has two properties that, directly affect it's durability. Most of us would not want to spend money on a gemstone and then, sit worrying about it being easily damaged. At the same time the beauty and grace of turquoise gems has been appreciated for thousands of years, take a good loook at turquoise and you will be amazed by it's beauty. Gem treatments are nothing new, some of them are widely accepted and others are not. The two properties of turquoise that make the stabilization treatment desirable are, hardness and porosity. On the Mohs scale where gem hardness is rated from a 1 to 10, turquoise gets a 5.5-6 reading. This is not very impressive and needs to be considered when handling turquoise gems. The second issue of porosity is something that exists in all natural turquoise gemstones. The gem has fine pores which cannot be seen with the naked eye but, are sufficient to enable the gem absorb liquids that it comes into contact with. Even plain water is something that you should not soak turquoise gemstones in. We have heard some stories about the mines in Nevada yielding some turquoise that is very dense, probably low on porosity. In any case Nevada is not the place where majority of the turquoise gems come from, so nothing has actually been verified and tested.
When treating turquoise with the stabilization process, an effort is made to fill the pores in the stone. Keep in mind that the idea is to fill the pores not just to close them at the top. Rough turquoise is soaked in heated resins or plastics, the material soaks through the stone and fills the pores. On cooling the resinous material fills the pores and significantly reduces the porosity of the stone. The turquoise treated in this way is referred to as stabilized turquoise. The gemstone now has better durability and can withstand a higher degree of wear and tear. The important thing about this form of turquoise treatment is that, the effects of the treatment are longlasting.
It is important to understand that stabilization of turquoise is not the only form of turquoise treatment available. Other forms of turquoise treatment like dyeing and waxing might not be very stable, the effect of these other treatments could also last for a considerably shotter time as compared to the stabilization treatment. An very useful suggestion that we would make relates to the caring and cleaning of turquoise gems. When you wear, store or clean turquoise gems do rely on the treatment process to have made the gem very sturdy. Just believe that the hardness and porosity characteristics of turquoise, requires your care and attention.
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