NOTICE : I am NOT currently cutting any meteorites for the general public, so this offer is "out of stock". I am leaving this page here for informational purposes only.
Do you need your meteorite cut, but you don't own a lapidary saw? I can cut it for you. At this time, I only cut stony types and stony-iron specimens.
Reasons to cut a meteorite :
1) for classification purposes - any meteorite that is to be classified, must have a type specimen removed for analysis. This is called the "20/20 rule". When submitting a meteorite for analysis, you must send 20 grams or 20% of the specimen, whichever is less. This type specimen is donated to the lab for testing purposes and to keep a sample on file for future study or pairing comparisons. What remains after cutting is the "main mass" - which the owner keeps. You can send your main mass to me and I will carefully remove a type specimen for analysis. I will weigh your meteorite with an accurate digital scale and remove 20% (or 20 grams, as per the 20/20 rule) in the form of a slice or endcut. Then, I will carefully pack and return both specimens - the 20/20 type specimen, and the main mass. You can then keep the main mass and send the type specimen to a lab of your choice for analysis.
2) for aesthetic purposes - a meteorite that is weathered on the outside, may have an attractive matrix inside. Such a meteorite is better displayed as a slice or endcut. I can prepare thin slices down to ~1mm thickness. Slices can be displayed on their own, or they can be incorporated into jewelry.
3) for sharing or selling - a whole meteorite can be cut into slices and then resold for profit. If you have a meteorite that you would like to sell samples from, I can cut it into slices for you. Then you can keep the biggest and nicest specimen for yourself, and sell the rest. Or, you can give away the slices as gifts for outreach or educational purposes. Slicing up a meteorite makes it "go further".
4) for curiosity reasons - have an unclassified meteorite that you suspect is a rare or valuable type? Do want to peek inside and view the interior of the specimen? Send the meteorite to me and I will carefully cut a discrete window into the specimen. This will allow you to see the interior and decide if the specimen is worth classifying.
A few notes about how I cut meteorites :
1) I cut meteorites using a Lortone Rock Rascal 6-inch (150mm) lapidary trimsaw.
2) I only use distilled water as a coolant - this minimizes contamination of the specimen.
3) All specimens are baked in an oven after cutting to purge any traces of water from the cutting process.
4) If desired, basic cutting services includes sanding of the cut surface to 220/320 grit. (inquire for additional polishing to 1500 grit)
5) I use a 6-inch diamond blade that has a .012" kerf (blade thickness) - this generates very little waste.
PLEASE READ THE FOLLOWING IF YOU ARE CONSIDERING MY CUTTING SERVICES
1) I can only cut stony specimens - no irons or pallasites.
2) I can only cut specimens that are smaller than 2-inches (<50mm) in diameter. Anything larger than 2-inches is too big for my saw to handle. Please do NOT send any specimens larger than this.
3) Accidents happen - this means that your meteorite may shatter or break during the cutting process. Some meteorites have fractures, weak points, or are friable in nature. This is especially true for heavily-weathered specimens. I cannot be held responsible for unplanned breaks or saw accidents. I will do my best to make good clean cuts without accidents and I will treat your specimen in the same way I would treat my own valuable specimens - very carefully. If I suspect that a specimen may shatter (it looks cracked and weathered), then I will email the owner and let them know. If the owner wants to back out, then I will not cut the specimen and mail it back. (in such a case that the meteorite is not cut, then I will refund the cutting fee minus return shipping expenses)
4) After the cutting services are completed, I will carefully pack the specimens and mail them back to the owner. The preferred method of shipping is USPS Priority Mail with Signature Confirmation. This typically takes 2-3 days and I have had good luck with it.
5) To use my cutting service, you must pay to ship the specimen to me after we agree on a fee.
6) Typical turn-around time varies depending on my schedule. Usually I will cut your specimens on the same day (or the next) that I receive them. Taking return shipping time into account, you should have your specimens back in about a week. If I suspect any reason for a delay, I will notify the owner in advance.
7) The price shown is for basic cutting services - such as removing a type specimen slice for classification, or cutting open a window into a specimen. For special services (cutting shapes like cabochons, polishing, etc), there may be additional charges - I will notify the owner in advance and give the option to back out if this is the case.
8) If your cut meteorite is interesting or beautiful, I may offer to trade my cutting services for a small sample of the specimen. In such a case, I would keep a small part-slice in addition to doing the required cutting, and then refund part or all of the cutting cost. This option will only be available on a case by case basis. This means you could potentially get your meteorite cut for free - costing you just a small part-slice and the cost to ship the original specimen to me.