Thursday, February 19, 2009

Dean's Beans, Ganoksin , Giant Crystals and my torch

I'm sitting here finishing my cup of tea, reading the morning's email....and craving some good coffee. I periodically quit coffee because it gives me heart palpitations (even decaf does this). But, invariably I start craving it again - I miss the ritual of grinding and the heavenly smell. I've decided to order up an interesting new blend from my favorite organic, fair trade coffee vendor - Dean's Beans which promises to be a 'peaceful yet empowering' blend that will help me achieve 'universal harmony' - what more could I ask, ha ha.... I learned about Dean's from donating to LinkTV - their company was one of the giveaway sponsors. (If you have satellite, check out LinkTV - fascinating documentaries, and great international music)

One of the things I look forward to the most in each day's email are the posts from the Orchid forum at Ganoksin. Ganoksin is a positive wealth of information for not only metalsmiths, but anyone who has a jewelry business or hobby. I have learned so much from lurking there (I have never posted). They had a great discussion on sawing technique a while back that was really helpful to me, and are now talking about how to formulate a business plan - very timely info for me since I'm actually doing that now. (yes, I know, I should have done this long ago...)

A Ganoksin article also guided me through setting up my acetylene torch by myself without blowing anything up - something I am eternally grateful for!

Here's my torch today, a little over a year later. Now the big question is how long before it is out of acetylene and I have to go get a new tank? It was on 1600 (outer number dial) when it was full, got down to 400 in mid-December, and here's where it is this morning.

My question is, will it run out on a weekend in the middle of a big project, ha ha....this is kind of like a new car where you don't know exactly where empty really is on the gas gauge.

Also in today's email I finally learned what the name Ganoksin means, something I have always wondered. Dr. E. Aspler, who started Orchid with Charles Lewton-Brain, and known to Orchidians as Hanuman, posted an interesting collection of facts this morning about the Ganoksin project. Here is his explanation of the name: "Ganoksin is a Thai word. In Thai Ganok means pure gold, Sin means art, and together they can be thought of as meaning 'The Art of Gold'." Now I know! Here's the entire post if you want to know more. Or, you can read the whole story of Orchid and Ganoksin here.

I also learned about a cave of giant crystals down in Chihuahua, Mexico - completely amazing! Check out this video if you'd like an interesting little diversion. The photo here is from this National Geographic article about the same discovery.

And now I had better get going - lots of things on the bench to finish today, and a missing international order to track down. See ya later....


  1. Great post. I haven't run my acetylene tank empty yet but my propane bottle seems to make a dozen or more beads after it hits empty.

  2. Yikes! I'm in the "if it's close to empty, fill it!!" camp. Or get another one, whichever you have to do. I hate to run out of things in the night or during a weekend. Yes, it forces a break, but I hate to be forced to do much of anything :P

  3. Those crystals are AWESOME!
    I just popped in to tell you that you have an award waitng for you over at my blog. You deserve it!

  4. Jen, I actually did think about getting a second tank so I'd have it ready when the first one runs out, but then I decided I didn't want a whole tank of explosive gas sitting around. Truthfully, I kind of like the fact that my tank is almost empty , lol!

    Aw, Tammy, thank you so much for the award!! I'll go get it and send it out again in the next couple of days!

  5. Hawaiian coffee is a great one to try and also grown by small farmers. The harvesting and roasting process is like an art form. The coffee is soo delicious, really rich and robust with an incredible aroma. I order online from Kona Luna to get pure Kona coffee because I discovered local stores sold watered down blends that just weren't the same.