This article is a summary of a YouTube video "How to Cut a Cabochon Ethiopian Opal Gemstone" by

Producing a Cabochon Opal from Ethiopian Opal: A Step-by-Step Guide

TLDRLearn how to produce a cabochon opal from Ethiopian opal in this step-by-step guide. Discover the unique characteristics of Ethiopian opal and the process involved in producing a high-quality cabochon. The hydrophane nature of the opal allows it to absorb water and change in transparency. However, it is important to avoid oils and other substances that can cause damage. Follow along as we demonstrate how to shape and polish the opal, ensuring symmetry and a flat back for easy setting. Don't miss the opportunity to work with this beautiful and versatile gemstone!

Key insights

:gem:Ethiopian opal is a hydrophane material, absorbing water and changing in transparency.

:sparkles:Ethiopian opal does not craze like other opals, making it more stable for cutting and shaping.

:droplet:Take care to avoid oils and substances that can be absorbed by the opal, potentially causing damage.

:art:Maintain symmetry and a flat back during shaping to ensure easy setting of the cabochon.

:pick:Remove any imperfections and work towards a polished finish for a high-quality cabochon opal.


What is the difference between Ethiopian opal and other opals?

Ethiopian opal is hydrophane, meaning it absorbs water and changes in transparency. It also has better stability and doesn't craze like other opals.

How should I care for Ethiopian opal jewelry?

Avoid exposing Ethiopian opal to oils, hair sprays, and perfumes, as they can be absorbed by the opal and cause damage.

Can Ethiopian opal be used in other types of jewelry?

Yes, Ethiopian opal can be used in various types of jewelry, including rings, earrings, necklaces, and bracelets.

Is it difficult to shape and polish Ethiopian opal?

Shaping and polishing Ethiopian opal require skill and attention to detail, but with practice, you can achieve beautiful results.

What are the best practices for setting a cabochon opal?

When setting a cabochon opal, make sure the back is flat for easy setting. Choose a setting that provides adequate protection and showcases the opal's beauty.

Timestamped Summary

00:00Introduction to producing a cabochon opal from Ethiopian opal

03:02Exploring the unique characteristics of Ethiopian opal, including its hydrophane nature and color variations

12:50Pre-forming the opal to remove imperfections and shape it for cabochon cutting

17:50Using a cabochon machine to further shape and refine the opal

25:33Finishing the shaping process and checking for symmetry and color

27:59Working on the back of the opal to create a flat surface for easy setting