Updated February,22, 2015



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 Clean your own specimens from 
the Benitoite Gem Mine !


June 21, 2014

In June 2010 Steve Perry (steveperrygems.com ) and I purchased the last of the commecially recovered mineralized material from the Benitoite Gem Mine from Collector's Edge in Golden, Colorado.  This is an update of the material that remains that Steve and I will offer to collectors who want to clean their own specimen from the now closed Benitoite Gem mine. 

A brief history here: Bryan's operation (Benitoite Mine, Inc. (BMI)), there from 2000 until 2004, worked out 100% of the remaining in situ vein material.  They also ran the entire contents of dump material and colluvial deposits through their elaborate jig system twice to recover in excess of 95% of the remaining gem rough and at least 80-85% of the remaining specimen grade material.  The operation essentially "got it all" as far as a commercial operation is concerned.  This is not to say that nothing will ever be found at the mine site again.  There will always likely be something there still to be found at the mine site especially after a large rain storm and as some of the tenacious mud is rinsed off the rocks over time and through the wet winter months.  But the rehabilitated and recontoured mine site became an extinct locality for in situ material once BMI left in 2004.  Additionally, the Environmental Protection Agency and Bureau of Land Management still have a closure order on the Clear Creek area owing to several factors including very high natural levels of asbestos in the soils and road system, rare and endangered plant communities and decades of abuse by OHVs such as motor cycles and Sport Utility Vehicles.   So, today it is not possible for the current owner, Dave Schreiner of Coalinga, to bring paying customers to the mine to rummage through the colluvial material for a rare remaining specimen or two.  Dave can still go to the mine, collect and transport 10 yard dump trucks of material for collectors to sift through at his fee dig operation at Los Gatos park, but the chance to go to the mine is not possible. 

Steve and I know exactly how big the "Benitoite Universe" is and what remains of this very finite resource.  These photos show what have just finished sorting from the material left.   Once we've finished selling mine run material Steve and I will focus on prepping the remaining material for specimens, wholesale material and gem rough. 

 

These three pictures above and to the right are typical
of the sorted mine run material available as
of July 7, 2011. 

 

The images below the typical material available by the four size classes we are offering.


Typical of less than or equal to 8 cms


Typical of less than or equal to 8-12 cms


Typical of less than or equal to 12-20 cms


Typical of greater or equal to 20 cms

 

How to clean Benitoite Mine Run

What People are Finding in Their Mine Run Orders

 

Some people have expressed concern about not finding a quality benitoite or neptunite in their lots. Keep in mind that there are other minerals of interest that are found in this material and only occur as small crystals - namely djurleite, joaquinite and jonesite. Jonesite in particular is the rarest species found at the mine other than a unique specimen of native silver which I have in my collection.  You may not see the primary species - benitoite and neptunite - as you etch the natrolite away but if you keep etching to the crossite matrix you will frequently find joaquinite and may be lucky enough to come across a jonesite specimen.  Steve and I get one good specimen for every five or six that we etch.  The rest end up in the wholesale flats or on my driveway. We also find that the smaller size class (less than or equal to 8 cms) tend to have a higher frequency of crystals when etching is finished. 

All mine run pieces shipped will have evidence of Neptunite and/or Benitoite or a vein or layer of natrolite with the characteristics of productive specimen material.  Keep in mind that neptunite is at least 10 times more plentiful than benitoite was from the mine.  The material will not be high graded by request or for extra monetary considerations and will only be offered as is.  In some cases material will have been trimmed using a diamond saw to remove excess matrix which is simply dead weight. This was done by Collector's Edge prior to their shipping the material back to Golden, Colorado from Coalinga, California or during their initial prep work.

Shipping costs will be in addition to the amounts in the table below and can be found in the second table below.  The first table below shows what is available by size class and $ amount.   The number of pieces (pcs) is fairly accurate but can be more or less.  Unless requested all orders will be shipped via the US Postal Service.  Customers requesting FedEx or UPS will pay substantially higher rates for shipping. 

 
 
            Maximum dimension of piece in lot
Each order will have over the amount requested to account for any adhering mud
 
8 cm or less
8-12 cm
12-20 cm
20 cm or greater
1/2 kilo
$175 = 10 to 12 pcs
SOLD OUT
SOLD OUT
Not Available
1 kilo
$325 = 18 to 25 pcs
SOLD OUT
SOLD OUT
Not Available
2 kilos
$600 = 35 to 45 pcs
SOLD OUT
SOLD OUT
Not Available
5 kilos
$1500 = 90 to 125 pcs
SOLD OUT
SOLD OUT
SOLD OUT

 
BULK MATERIAL SHIPPING COSTS
( Effective December 20, 2014)

To our foreign customers:
The US Postal Service no longer offers surface shipping. 
We have to send all International orders by airmail only.
 

Sorry!

You can also check the US Postal Service site to 
determine what the costs will be by visiting the  

United States Postal Service Website


Bulk Mine Run
Lot Size
Shipping Costs
USA/Foreign
Using US Postal Service
1/2 kg
$9.00 / $20-$25
1 kg
$15.00 / $30-$40
2 kg
$15.00 / $50

 

To order contact  John Veevaert (john@trinityminerals.com) or Steve Perry (steve@steveperrygems.com) 

Thanks for your interest!

John & Steve
 

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All text, specimen images, and graphics are copyrighted 2001-2014 - John Veevaert