[The Midnight Gem] Koi Ponds & Other Curious Creatures II

Part Two of the epic.... seriously.

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[The Midnight Gem] Koi Ponds & Other Curious Creatures II

Postby Kelski on August 27th, 2018, 8:02 am

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Timestamp: 80th of Summer, 518 A.V.

Continued from: [The Midnight Gem] Koi Ponds & Other Curious Creatures


The building stirred again and Kelski sighed, putting aside her work to talk to it. She laid her hand on the workbench and thought soothing thoughts at it. It was irritated, awoken by something disturbing it. Kelski tilted her head not understanding what The Midnight Gem was upset about until it gave her a clear and sharp mental picture of pigeons roosting on its roof. The pigeons themselves weren’t exactly hurting or annoying the building, but their feces was. The building absolutely hated the pigeon poop! The pigeons were pooping all over one roof peak.

Kelski frowned in annoyance.

She wanted to get her cutting done today, but she wanted to help out The Gem and make it comfortable as well. Buildings in the early stages of awakening often needed comforting or entertaining. And if pigeon poop bothered it, Kelski would go hunt her some pigeons. She sent reassurance down their link, and rose from her bench, stretched and stripped off her clothing. Walking through the workshop and out onto the deck, she shifted and had to beat her wings hard to catch air and get into the sky. Eagles were heavy, but jumping off the balcony would have tipped the pigeons off.

Kelski rose in the sky, beating hard, and circled once, diving on at the rooftop. She opened her talons, launching them forward, and was in the middle of a mass chaos of pigeons before they knew what hit them. She caught birds in either talon, snapped their necks and tossed them onto the balcony before circling around and grabbing another and another as the birds all panicked and started taking wing.

She had a dozen or so by the third pass, her balcony littered with corpses. And she was most pleased with herself until she saw what the pigeons had left. White nasty bird droppings were everywhere. And the Kelvic knew the house wasn’t going to be happy. She landed on the balcony, called for Ember to come and see if she’d clean the birds – which she did – while Kelski drew a bucket of soapy sudsy water and grabbed a scrub brush and set it out on the balcony. Then she shifted to her eagle form, grabbed the bucket handle, and took off in the most awkward sloshing manner possible. But she got half the bucket to the roof, shifted to her human form, and began cleaning.

Two bells later she was finally done and the building was soothed. Luckily Little Rhaus made an appearance and began to play for her, easing the headache of shifting and scrubbing bird poop in the awkward morning light. Ember had pigeons and was going to make some sort of pigeon pie with them, which was actually something Kelski loved. She’d discovered how good pies were with Tove at Isle Park this year and she’d been a fan ever since.

So with a clean roof, Kelski went back to the workshop and picked up her dop once more, studying the preshaped sapphire and her diagram. Facets needed to be made from table to cutlet, some of the cuts forming other cuts just by virtue of the angles.

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Kelski
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[The Midnight Gem] Koi Ponds & Other Curious Creatures II

Postby Kelski on August 27th, 2018, 8:06 am

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Her barion cut had 96 steps, each angle precise and calculated with the size of the table or flat top surface in mind. Kelski quickly did the calculations and after she got done roughing out the shape with her hand faceter, connected the dop to her faceter that was connected to a protractor etched in metal that allowed her to start the cuts. Ninty six cuts took bells, but Kelski had to make sure the crown and pavilion formed a lens and reflector so they could gather and completely focus light before reflecting it back to the eye that was beholding it.

The crown became the lens… in this case a long rectangular one… gathering light from all directions… hence the steps up to the table all designed to capture more and more light which in turn focused it on the pavilion. The pavilion bounced the light around the insides of the stone then back upwards where the table was the only place it could reflect outward and escape. A well-cut stone had its color deepened, its brilliance improved, and was absolutely breathtaking to behold.

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The Sea Eagle refused to put anything on display in her shop that wasn’t well-cut. She had a reputation to maintain and was absolutely solid on her quality control. Master Li had taught her well.

Kelski was just lucky that sapphire would take a step cut table. Different gemstones and minerals often required different cuts. They would flake, chip, or become weak if the wrong angles were used. Worse still some would not refract light properly without the proper angles of cut. There was an index called the Refractive Index or RI of any gem material that would tell her what angles would be acceptable based on how the light passed through the material.

In fact, the RI was one of the reasons why Reimancers had terrible times building authentic gemstones with djed because they could match the size shape and color but they weren’t aware of the inner secrets of gemstones which allowed jewelers like Kelski to spot fakes. Kelski thought of the RI as a direct reflection of the inner tissue of a stone and how it was built. And it was one of the reasons if she knew Reimancy, she could probably after a time be able to build proper gemstones that actually refracted light correctly based on their internal makeup.

It was something she’d have to discuss with Kynier eventually.

With nothing else left to do but get started, Kelski sat down and started her cuts. The table was the first cut to always be made and the cut everything else was based off of. Gemcutting was a lot like wood carving in that you removed all the material you didn’t want as a part of the stone. Only instead of freeformed lines, you actually cut correct angles that had to be perfectly equal to each other. Then she worked around, following the pattern the jewelcrafter laid out carefully.

In her case it was the table, c1 the long side of the step, c2 the top right corner, c3 the top short side, c4 the left top table, as she worked around in a circle and continued the pattern. Some angles were automatically cut by the fact that other angles were cut. Kelski went carefully, slowly, and double checked twice before she reset the angles each time. The stone slowly took shape as she worked on the crown, cutting in its girdle facets.

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They laugh at me because I am different.
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Kelski
Feral at heart.
 
Posts: 857
Words: 1100424
Joined roleplay: July 3rd, 2014, 11:08 pm
Location: Sunberth
Race: Kelvic
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[The Midnight Gem] Koi Ponds & Other Curious Creatures II

Postby Kelski on August 27th, 2018, 8:09 am

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Kelski was extremely careful. Cutting the crown or pavilion too deep or too shallow would change the RI and cause light leakage. She knew it had to be 1/3 of the total stone depth for the crown and 2/3rds of the total stone depth for the pavilion. Careful, ever so carefully, Kelski slowly finished the crown.

Removing the stone from the dop, she cleaned it, inverted it and began on the pavilion. The pavilion was by far the hardest part of the barion namely because the bottom was a brilliant cut designed for a round stone. Instead of radiating the facets out squarely, they angled out with some longer than the other creating those distinctive half moons reflected in the stone. Kelski had cut hundreds of brilliant cuts but never before one on a rectangular emerald shaped stone. The math alone was a challenge, but she worked through it until she had the diagram balanced with no light leakage evident.

Then she attached the dop to the help arm, set the first angle and began cutting. Pavilions had no tables so all she could do was start from the cutlet and cut one bold angle. Then, moving around to the other side, she began the series of cuts that would turn 24 angles into 48. It took most of the day and when she was done the Kelvic was exhausted.

She ate some of the pigeon stew, happily thanked Ember, and crawled into bed before Kynier even got home.

Kelski woke up almost cheerful. Polishing was one of Kelski’s favorite tasks and so she was up before the dawn down in her workshop getting at it. It gave her a chance to see the finished product and gave her hope that the stone had been cut properly and looked fantastic. The Kelvic had high hopes of being finished with the Koi Pond ring today, and maybe even before the building woke up and needed her attention. She’d let the sapphire on the dop and had already changed the lap wheels to her polishing stones.

Taking out diamond dust, Kelski sprinkled the wheel and with the foot peddle got the wheel spinning. Then, carefully, she began working the facets in the order she cut them, slowly going over the stone with the first grit of dust, working it all down, and then moving on to a finer and finer grit until the stone gleamed under the wheel.

Some Jewelcrafters took days to polish, but Kelski had a unique focus that allowed her to concentrate and really get the job done. She switched the stone on the dop multiple times to make sure she got all the surfaces, and when she thought she was close, Kelski stopped and wiped down the stone. She examined it carefully, checked to make sure the inclusions weren’t interfering with the brilliance, and then began with the final polish, working each facet until the stone felt like perfection in her hands. Then and only then did Kelski clean it, put it on a gem rack by her still warm forge to dry, and then after breakfast, she clear coated it with a sealant that made it harder to tarnish or the color to darken.


WC: 537
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They laugh at me because I am different.
I laugh at them because they are all the same.
User avatar
Kelski
Feral at heart.
 
Posts: 857
Words: 1100424
Joined roleplay: July 3rd, 2014, 11:08 pm
Location: Sunberth
Race: Kelvic
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Medals: 5
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Sunberth Seasonal Challenge (1)

[The Midnight Gem] Koi Ponds & Other Curious Creatures II

Postby Kelski on August 27th, 2018, 8:11 am

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Once the clear coat was dry, Kelski got out the ring, clamped it firmly in her jewelers vice, and went about mounting the stone. She buffed the whole thing, made sure the prongs were gripping it tight, and took a single impression in jewelers wax of the stone face, the prongs, and how it rose above the ring. This was an easy process. Kelski just melted jewelers wax on her forge, placed it in a small tin letting it cool to nearly solid, then pressed the ring down into it. Once the impression was made, Kelski set low temperature solider to heat, this time only a small portion, then filled the impression without melting the wax. Letting that dry, Kelski inverted the impression and had a perfect replica of the ring out of cheap metal to work with.

This blank would turn out to be invaluable when Kelski got ready to carve the koi. She was going to use a technique called Lost Wax Casting which allowed her to carve from wax the exact design she wanted to make of the Koi as exactly as she could. Then she’d set it into a mold that would be burned off during the creation. Once the mold was ready, she could pour herself the top decorative aspect of the two interlocking koi making her work easier by far than simply trying to hand work the metal.

The first thing Kelski needed to do was get out the sketch. She laid it on her workbench, tilted up so she could see it clearly, and then clamped a piece of wax in her jeweler’s vice. Taking carving tools, Kelski slowly began to whittle away the wax, forming rough shapes of fish. The investment wax she used for the lost wax casting was extra hard and took to carving well. She laid out the fins, carved out big soulful eyes, then gouged them out so she could set tiny glittering stones in the spaces. The fins took shape as huge sinuous flowing appendages and before long she was carving out scales on each little creature. She inverted the wax in the mold and began working on the edging around the tiny interlocked koi. Wax castoffs littered the ground around her feet before she was done. And dark was closing in.

Kelski didn’t care.

She kept working the design by adding tiny scales to each koi and hinting at the coloration of the patterns using tin lines across the scales to indicate color changes on the fish. All and all Kelski thought the design was beautiful when she was done and she could test its fit on the ring.

She did so, setting the koi wax mockup on the real ring and sighing. It was going to be beautiful.

The next step was to add sprues all over the figure. These were wax rods which provided additional channels for the metal to travel through and get to all parts of the piece when it was being poured. The wax, during this process, was burned away to vapor leaving the empty spaces to be filled by molten metal. It was a quick and dirty way to design beautiful unique jewelry in a reasonable timeframe that left the jewelry affordable because Kelski didn’t take six months carving it.

When the wax model was carved and it was ready to go, Kelski attached the wax model to the bottom of her investment flask which looked a lot like an upside-down funnel. The bottom, when inverted, becomes the top in which hot metal is poured into the mold she would be creating by burning away the wax. First though, Kelski needed to set the flask cylinder in place which created an upside-down cup which held the investment plaster.

Then Kelski mixed the plaster, a great deal of it, and poured it into the plaster investment where it filled the air space around the wax mold with its sprues. Then Kelski fired up her forge, ran its temperature up by using coal, and let the plaster cure by the edge of the forge where it was gradually heated up to the point where gradually cooling it would case the wax to vanish leaving negative space within the plaster where gold could be poured.


WC: 712
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They laugh at me because I am different.
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User avatar
Kelski
Feral at heart.
 
Posts: 857
Words: 1100424
Joined roleplay: July 3rd, 2014, 11:08 pm
Location: Sunberth
Race: Kelvic
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[The Midnight Gem] Koi Ponds & Other Curious Creatures II

Postby Kelski on August 27th, 2018, 8:16 am

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Kelski had gold ready in her crucible and set it to heat. When the gold was molten, Kelski inverted it into the lost wax casting mold, and filled it completely. She tapped the mold gently multiple times, then in a move she’d been practicing, gently pulled djed to her eyes to actually look inside the investment mold. Silver eyes glittered as she turned the mold around and around, looking for unwanted air pockets or places the sprues didn’t get filled up well enough. Nothing. It was an excellent pour, Kelski decided, releasing the magic. Setting that aside, all she had to do was wait for it to completely cool and cure. The Kelvic could do this in her sleep and rose to stretch…. wondering where everyone was at and what was on the agenda for the day.

Walking over to a wall, Kelski laid her hand on it, and sought out the building’s awareness. Sure enough, The Midnight Gem was there, lurking, trying to understand what she was actually doing. Kelski took the time to carefully fill her mind with images, bits and piece of knowledge she knew about lost wax casting and how she was trying to recreate something she’d been asked to do as part of her business. The building’s curiosity was peaked, and Kelski showed the building the sketch of the ring, its setting, and the decorative Koi curled around the barion cut blue sapphire. Kelski wasn’t sure what the building would think, but she almost rocked back in startlement when the building radiated its approval down the connection. Kelski smiled brightly, proud of the fact the building approved of her work. Jewelcrafting was good honest work that could earn someone a fine living if they had enough patience to cut gemstones.

Releasing her contact from the building, Kelski went upstairs, rummaged up some food, and broke her fast on the balcony watching the sun rise. She loved the mornings but was secretly keeping track of the time. Less than a bell to go and she could put her ring together and finish the commission. So she forced herself to relax, clear her mind, and let her hearing concentrate on the sound of the waves crashing into shore, gently pulling out and sliding almost silently back out again. The Kelvic loved The Midnight Gem and in that moment, the building almost immediately connected with her and reassured her of its love.

The Kelvic was floored in her surprise. The building usually didn’t contact her, she contacted it, though she never forgot to wish it a good morning or peaceful dreams when it was time to sleep. Clearing her mind, she kept a blank slate and was open for communication if the building wanted too. Concentrating on the sounds of the seagulls and waves, Kelski wasn’t as startled at the tentative touch and a clear inquiry after how she was. Kelski sent love and happiness across the magelink and the building purred its contentment at her. The Kelvic Sea Eagle laughed, unsurprising, since two of the four Kelvics in the building were loud cats that purred and purred when happy.

She rose, gave the railing a pat as she stood on the balcony, then retreated back inside and down the stairs to the workshop. It was time to check the mold. Kelski broke it open gently, pulled the twin koi from their plaster prison, and examined how it had turned out. Other than the sprues rising out of the piece everywhere, Kelski was very pleased.

So she took it over to her bench, sat down, and carefully began cutting all the sprues off. Once that was done, she took the piece over to her polishing wheel and went to work. Before long, the Koi were polished, all traces of the sprues gone, and gleaming with golden brilliance. So she took it over to where the actual band and mounting rack was, clamped the ring in, and laid the koi over the setting. They fit like a glove. Kelski carefully removed the piece, fluxed all the prongs and the ring, then soldered the face plate of koi encircling the sapphire onto the ring.

Taking it to the wash station, Kelski started the process of washing the ring thoroughly to remove all the flux, then did some last minute adjustments to remove excess spurs, fluxing liquid, and any burnt parts to the ring. It was, in Kelski’s mind at least, time for a final look through and to contact the client and let him know the ring was done.

Kelski held it up to the light, admired it, then of course tried it on before she wiped it clean with a polishing cloth and tucked it into a neat little wooden box she ordered to deliver her rings in, and sent Aer’wyn on his first mission to get it home to the Devanto’s sooner rather than later. It was paid in full so Kelski had the satisfaction of knowing it was a job completed happily, rapidly, and with tremendous quality.

WC: 839
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They laugh at me because I am different.
I laugh at them because they are all the same.
User avatar
Kelski
Feral at heart.
 
Posts: 857
Words: 1100424
Joined roleplay: July 3rd, 2014, 11:08 pm
Location: Sunberth
Race: Kelvic
Character sheet
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Medals: 5
Featured Thread (1) Mizahar Grader (1)
Trailblazer (1) Overlored (1)
Sunberth Seasonal Challenge (1)

[The Midnight Gem] Koi Ponds & Other Curious Creatures II

Postby Kelski on August 27th, 2018, 3:49 pm

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Grading


Kelski

Experience: Hunting +1, Cleaning +1, Body Building +1, Jewelcrafting +5, Architectrix +3, Mathematics +1, Carving +2, Auristics +1, Teaching +1

Lores: Architectrix: Understanding The Irritations Of Buildings, Architectrix: Reassuring Buildings, Cleaning: Disinfecting Pigeon Poop From A Roof, JC: Barion Cuts Have 96 Steps, JC: Step Cuts, JC: Which Minerals/Stones Could Take What Cuts, JC: Refractive Index, JC: Polishing Different Cuts, JC: Making Wax Impressions, Architectrix: Teaching/Educating Buildings, JC: Carving Wax To Get Poured Mold Details
Image
They laugh at me because I am different.
I laugh at them because they are all the same.
User avatar
Kelski
Feral at heart.
 
Posts: 857
Words: 1100424
Joined roleplay: July 3rd, 2014, 11:08 pm
Location: Sunberth
Race: Kelvic
Character sheet
Storyteller secrets
Plotnotes
Medals: 5
Featured Thread (1) Mizahar Grader (1)
Trailblazer (1) Overlored (1)
Sunberth Seasonal Challenge (1)


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