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Galena, Kommern
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John Betts




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PostPosted: Apr 20, 2019 15:03    Post subject: Re: Galena, Kommern  

This reference describes the habit of galena found:

"As small concretionary nodules, it occurs disseminated through sand-stone at Kommern in the Eifel."

See: https:(/)(/)en(.)wikisource(.)org(/)wiki/Page(:)EB1911_-_Volume_11.djvu(/)417

Does not match the specimen.

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PostPosted: Apr 20, 2019 16:30    Post subject: Re: Galena, Kommern  

Hi all,
i have visited the Mechernich mines several times in the past including the Kommern mines (for instance Gottessegen pit, and other old workings at the Griesberg hill). I seriously doubt that - if the specimen is galena at all - it comes from the Mechernich district. We used to go on field trips from Aachen RWTH univesirty almost every year from 1985 to 1998 and i found really nice materail, also had the opportunity to see lots of historic specimens from the district. Never seen anything even sligthly similar.
Cheers
Roger
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Montanpark




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PostPosted: Apr 20, 2019 16:34    Post subject: Re: Galena, Kommern  

- i forgot: the Kommern mines were closed long before the 1950s. The mines at the Mechernicher Bleiberg area - opposite side of the town of Mechernich - were open until 1957.
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Richard Arseneau




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PostPosted: Apr 20, 2019 19:06    Post subject: Re: Galena, Kommern  

It is hard to tell from a photograph, but for what it is worth the streak looks Lead-grey to me.
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PostPosted: Apr 20, 2019 19:25    Post subject: Re: Galena, Kommern  

Deborah Deitsch-Perez wrote:
Hi, Don't recall whether I have posted before; I have been lurking for a few years. I am a collector in Dallas Texas. I am going to post 2 pictures of a Peru Galena that we bought in Denver last year, that looks hoppered to me. If you saw the MAD case in Tucson this year, you saw it; I think it was in the front right. Thoughts?


Deborah, that's a superb galena! Like Tobi, I also have a fondness for galena, so I really appreciate great specimens of this heavy metal.
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PostPosted: Apr 20, 2019 20:38    Post subject: Re: Galena, Kommern  

Here is a hoppered galena from Canada, not quite as nice as either of the previously posted specimens.


collection 136 (2).JPG
 Mineral: Galena
 Locality:
Sa Dena Hes Mine, Watson Lake, Watson Lake District, Yukon, British Columbia, Canada
 Dimensions: 8x5x5 cm
 Description:
 Viewed:  1455 Time(s)

collection 136 (2).JPG



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Deborah Deitsch-Perez




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PostPosted: Apr 20, 2019 22:08    Post subject: Re: Galena, Kommern  

cool, and thx. Anyone have a Bulgarian to post?
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PostPosted: Apr 21, 2019 00:31    Post subject: Re: Galena, Kommern  

Deborah Deitsch-Perez wrote:
cool, and thx. Anyone have a Bulgarian to post?
I you google "skeletal galena bulgaria" you will find a lot of pictures.

And Mathias, as you can see from the pictures of the several "hopper" galenas: If your specimen is really galena, then you are the lucky owner of the best natural-grown galena specimen of this kind that was ever found. I can only repeat that I can't tell what this is, but I have doubts it is galena for this mineral actually never grows in such sharp and well-defined crystals when they are "hoppered". They look like a perfect textbook version of the skeletal "hopper" growth, and I would really wonder if galena grows like this :-/
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PostPosted: Apr 21, 2019 01:05    Post subject: Re: Galena, Kommern  

Hi Mathias!
First congrats to your extraordinary rare and excellent Galena!
You found a needle in a haystack.........


Now it is time to solve the riddle:

99 % from Katerina coal mine in Radvanice, Czech Republic!!!!!!!!
A piity Mindat and Mineralienatlas show only single crystals...... https://www.mindat.org/gallery.php?loc=766&min=1641

I remember matrix specimen like yours from very few private czech collections and the mineral show in Turnov. Typical matrix and always very, very rare!
The Galena from this burning coal dump is always very shiny and fresh - no signs of weathering or decomposing. Also typical is the skeletal form - similar to the infamous synthetic bismuth crystals. In Radvanice we must say that this is anthropogenic material but not man made! Also characteristic for these Galenas is a very very slight radioactivity - like no other Galenas.

I visited Radvanice last July with Petr Cerny, who is a geologist from Prague. He told me something about it and showed me the locality. Totally recultivated now and not any chance to find anything...... So you can be sure to own an excellent specimen from a worldwide unique find - congrats!



Galenit Radvanice IMG_0008 (2).jpg
 Locality:
Kateřina Mine (coal mine), Radvanice, Trutnov District, Hradec Králové Region, Bohemia, Czech Republic
 Dimensions: 21 mm
 Description:
 Viewed:  1434 Time(s)

Galenit Radvanice IMG_0008 (2).jpg


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Mathias




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PostPosted: Apr 21, 2019 03:16    Post subject: Re: Galena, Kommern  

Montanpark wrote:
Hi all,
i have visited the Mechernich mines several times in the past including the Kommern mines (for instance Gottessegen pit, and other old workings at the Griesberg hill). I seriously doubt that - if the specimen is galena at all - it comes from the Mechernich district. We used to go on field trips from Aachen RWTH univesirty almost every year from 1985 to 1998 and i found really nice materail, also had the opportunity to see lots of historic specimens from the district. Never seen anything even sligthly similar.
Cheers
Roger


Hi Roger thanks for your comments.
A few years ago I visited Grube Wohlfahrt, a retired lady who formerly worked there as a geologist gave me a private tour, but it is also open for the public, you can buy tickets for guided tours. Inside you'll see a vertical wall which is in fact pertified beach.
You will not see any minerals by the way.....

Now you've mentioned it; this a is very nice suggestion for a holiday.
.... and another suggestion.... in the afternoon one could drive to Maria Laach and walk around the crater lake where you can see CO2 bubbling up. Would be a nice geological holiday.


Regards,

Mathias
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Mathias




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PostPosted: Apr 21, 2019 04:16    Post subject: Re: Galena, Kommern  

Kevin Conroy wrote:
For what it's worth, there's a similar looking specimen on Mindat: https://www.mindat.org/photo-69466.html

However, the collector who posted this is sometimes in error (as we all are). As has been suggested some tests on your specimen will be helpful.


Hi Kevin,

Thanks for the link.
I've studied both pictures (the one on mindat and my specimen), and they look very similar.

But it doesn't answer the questions;

Is it manmade?
Is it Bismuth from a smelter?
Which is the locality (if not manmade)?

But since the specimen from your link has a label from the NY state museum stating Clausthal Zellerfeld as the locality, this, to me, is a reliable source which makes me believesomemore that the specimen is Galena and is natural.

But yes, in the end there's always doubt......
If XRF detects lead, than it's not Bismuth. And also not manmade.
So to be continued.....

Thanks
Mathias.
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PostPosted: Apr 21, 2019 06:00    Post subject: Re: Galena, Kommern  

Is there a reason why you could not use a heat test to see if it is bismuth? Bismuth melts at 271.4°C (520.5°F) which is a temperature that can be achieved in an ordinary oven.
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Montanpark




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PostPosted: Apr 21, 2019 07:18    Post subject: Re: Galena, Kommern  

Mathias wrote:
Montanpark wrote:
Hi all,
i have visited the Mechernich mines several times in the past including the Kommern mines (for instance Gottessegen pit, and other old workings at the Griesberg hill). I seriously doubt that - if the specimen is galena at all - it comes from the Mechernich district. We used to go on field trips from Aachen RWTH univesirty almost every year from 1985 to 1998 and i found really nice materail, also had the opportunity to see lots of historic specimens from the district. Never seen anything even sligthly similar.
Cheers
Roger


Hi Roger thanks for your comments.
A few years ago I visited Grube Wohlfahrt, a retired lady who formerly worked there as a geologist gave me a private tour, but it is also open for the public, you can buy tickets for guided tours. Inside you'll see a vertical wall which is in fact pertified beach.
You will not see any minerals by the way.....

Now you've mentioned it; this a is very nice suggestion for a holiday.
.... and another suggestion.... in the afternoon one could drive to Maria Laach and walk around the crater lake where you can see CO2 bubbling up. Would be a nice geological holiday.


Regards,

Mathias


Hi Mathias,
actually if you know where to look you´ll also see some nice galena cubes in the Wohlfahrt mine underground ;-) ... i was one of the first 100 "shareholders" when they raised funds to open the mine as visitors mine. Yes, it is a quite nice experience to visit and i can also recommend visiting the surface relics of the old vein outcrops (protected areas nowadays). Nearby are some spots where one still can find nice galena specimens...
A major difference between the Mechernich/Maubach type lead deposits and Rescheid, Bleialf etc in the Eifel Mts is that Mechernich is disseminated in triassic sandstones and conglomerates of the Bunter with some vein-like mineralisation which may have been the origin of the impregnative ore forming solutions migrating laterally from the faults into the sediments. The Bleialf and Rescheid deposits are more "classic" quartz-sulfide veins in devonian metasediments (quartzitic sandstones, shales). Rescheid yielded galena cubes of up to 20 cm size during operation time (Schwalenbach deposit).
The Mechernich visitors mine is also a very nice experience, and they have a museum with some minerals there. Bleialf also has a small visitors mine. So lots of geological POIs in the area. If you ever plan to make a tour to the Eifel feel free to contact me, i´ll be glad to provide some more info.
Cheers, Roger
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Tobi




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PostPosted: Apr 22, 2019 02:04    Post subject: Re: Galena, Kommern  

I would really wish for Mathias that the specimen from his original post was a natural galena for it would be a superb one. But I still have doubts: Am I the only one who thinks that these crystals on Mathias' specimen look "too perfect" to be natural galena with this kind of growth? Most "hoppered" galena crystals look weathered, they are often not complete or look distorted. But these look nearly perfect: A lot of them grew together on matrix, they are lustrous, have perfect right angles and look like a textbook version of the "hopper" growth. Really, I don't want to be offensive, but as a long-time galena collector I have never seen something like that. I still fear it could be man-made, maybe a lab-grown thing or slag.

But as I said before, and this is not (!) polemic: If it should really be natural galena, then Mathias is the proud owner of the world's best galena specimen of this growth form. I liked Gerhard's suggestion with the Katerina Coal Mine, but I don't agree, sorry: The "hoppered" galena crystals from that locality are mostly single crystals, and the also look weathered and are often not complete. If this specimen with its many perfectly grown and highly lustrous textbook crystals is really from the Katerina Mine, it would be a sensation. And it would be the same sensation from any other locality where such galena appeared ...

I would really love to see this riddle solved - not by photos but by a scientific analysis. Mathias, do you have any connection to a lab or an institute that could help here?

And really: If this turns out to be a natural galena specimen - I envy you! :)

Best regards
Tobi
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PostPosted: Apr 22, 2019 02:27    Post subject: Re: Galena, Kommern  

Tobi wrote:
I would really wish for Mathias that the specimen from his original post was a natural galena for it would be a superb one. But I still have doubts: Am I the only one who thinks that these crystals on Mathias' specimen look "too perfect" to be natural galena with this kind of growth? Most "hoppered" galena crystals look weathered, they are often not complete or look distorted. But these look nearly perfect: A lot of them grew together on matrix, they are lustrous, have perfect right angles and look like a textbook version of the "hopper" growth. Really, I don't want to be offensive, but as a long-time galena collector I have never seen something like that. I still fear it could be man-made, maybe a lab-grown thing or slag.

But as I said before, and this is not (!) polemic: If it should really be natural galena, then Mathias is the proud owner of the world's best galena specimen of this growth form. I liked Gerhard's suggestion with the Katerina Coal Mine, but I don't agree, sorry: The "hoppered" galena crystals from that locality are mostly single crystals, and the also look weathered and are often not complete. If this specimen with its many perfectly grown and highly lustrous textbook crystals is really from the Katerina Mine, it would be a sensation. And it would be the same sensation from any other locality where such galena appeared ...

I would really love to see this riddle solved - not by photos but by a scientific analysis. Mathias, do you have any connection to a lab or an institute that could help here?

And really: If this turns out to be a natural galena specimen - I envy you! :)

Best regards
Tobi


Hi Tobi thanks,

Of course I have doubts myself. But if my specimen is manmade, than the one with the NY state museum label as shown on Mindat is fake as well. I really believe these specimens are similar.

Also don't forget that my specimen is rather small. Crystals are up to 6 mm.
The peruvian specimens as shown by one of the respondents are incomparably better than my specimen.

I will do XRF analysis which will reveal the elements present as mass%. If there's Bismuth then it is fake, if there's lead, then it is Galena.

But i will have to wait some as as our XRF is currently being replaced by a new one.

To be continued,

Mathias
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PostPosted: Apr 22, 2019 02:33    Post subject: Re: Galena, Kommern  

Montanpark wrote:
Mathias wrote:
Montanpark wrote:
Hi all,
i have visited the Mechernich mines several times in the past including the Kommern mines (for instance Gottessegen pit, and other old workings at the Griesberg hill). I seriously doubt that - if the specimen is galena at all - it comes from the Mechernich district. We used to go on field trips from Aachen RWTH univesirty almost every year from 1985 to 1998 and i found really nice materail, also had the opportunity to see lots of historic specimens from the district. Never seen anything even sligthly similar.
Cheers
Roger


Hi Roger thanks for your comments.
A few years ago I visited Grube Wohlfahrt, a retired lady who formerly worked there as a geologist gave me a private tour, but it is also open for the public, you can buy tickets for guided tours. Inside you'll see a vertical wall which is in fact pertified beach.
You will not see any minerals by the way.....

Now you've mentioned it; this a is very nice suggestion for a holiday.
.... and another suggestion.... in the afternoon one could drive to Maria Laach and walk around the crater lake where you can see CO2 bubbling up. Would be a nice geological holiday.


Regards,

Mathias


Hi Mathias,
actually if you know where to look you´ll also see some nice galena cubes in the Wohlfahrt mine underground ;-) ... i was one of the first 100 "shareholders" when they raised funds to open the mine as visitors mine. Yes, it is a quite nice experience to visit and i can also recommend visiting the surface relics of the old vein outcrops (protected areas nowadays). Nearby are some spots where one still can find nice galena specimens...
A major difference between the Mechernich/Maubach type lead deposits and Rescheid, Bleialf etc in the Eifel Mts is that Mechernich is disseminated in triassic sandstones and conglomerates of the Bunter with some vein-like mineralisation which may have been the origin of the impregnative ore forming solutions migrating laterally from the faults into the sediments. The Bleialf and Rescheid deposits are more "classic" quartz-sulfide veins in devonian metasediments (quartzitic sandstones, shales). Rescheid yielded galena cubes of up to 20 cm size during operation time (Schwalenbach deposit).
The Mechernich visitors mine is also a very nice experience, and they have a museum with some minerals there. Bleialf also has a small visitors mine. So lots of geological POIs in the area. If you ever plan to make a tour to the Eifel feel free to contact me, i´ll be glad to provide some more info.
Cheers, Roger


Hi Roger thanks for all your information, very interesting indeed.
Actually I know the area very well as my parents used to live in Gemuend.
As you've mentioned Schwalenbach deposit; I have a Galena on matrix labeled Schwalenbach. It is a nice cube of 4 * 3 * 2 cm on matrix, see the pictures.

Thanks,
Mathias



097D.JPG
 Locality:
Eifel, Rhineland-Palatinate/Rheinland-Pfalz, Germany
 Dimensions: 4 * 3 * 2 cm
 Description:
 Viewed:  1153 Time(s)

097D.JPG



097E.JPG
 Description:
 Viewed:  1151 Time(s)

097E.JPG


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PostPosted: Apr 22, 2019 08:04    Post subject: Re: Galena, Kommern  

Recommended reading: Hollow Galena from Madan, Bulgaria
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Bob Harman




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PostPosted: Apr 22, 2019 09:03    Post subject: Re: Galena, Kommern  

Lots of responses, interesting thoughts, reading and considered speculation. And it still is just that.....speculation.

Whether the original posted example is a lab created bismuth, or a lab created galena, or actually one of the finest natural hoppered galenas either from Germany
or Romania or ? ever found, still amounts to speculation.

All interesting stuff, but, unless the specimen is completely tested, I doubt the question of this specimen will be definitively answered on this forum thread. BOB
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Gerhard Brandstetter




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PostPosted: Apr 22, 2019 10:28    Post subject: Re: Galena, Kommern  

I'm a little confused .... apparently nobody has read my opinion on this question. As I wrote a little above, I know at least 99% of the answer. The galena in question is very, very typical for the Katerina coal mine in Radvanice, Czech Republic. Ask also experienced collectors from Bohemia - they know these finds very well. Nice greetings from Austria - Gerhard
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PostPosted: Apr 22, 2019 10:45    Post subject: Re: Galena, Kommern  

Gerhard Brandstetter wrote:
... The galena in question is very, very typical for the Katerina coal mine in Radvanice, Czech Republic.

Not at all Gerhard - this "typical" galena is a big curiosity from the burned COAL DUMP of that mine, with the mine sensu stricto have nothing to do - and this is a big difference.
regards
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