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Making a Cab

Making a Cabochon

Making a cabochon is a process which requires the use of special rock cutting and polishing machinery. 
A rough rock is first cut into slabs. 
A slab is a slice of rock of approximately 5 millimeters in thickness. 
The process is very much like slicing a loaf of bread. Once a slab is cut, a shape is traced onto it from a template. 
The slab is then trimmed to near the marked line to separate the drawn shape from the slab. 
 This is done using a diamond blade saw. 
The next stage is to mount the piece on a wooden handle (usually a dowel). This procedure is called "doping". 
The piece is then taken to the grinding wheels which are silicon carbide or diamond coated wheels, where it is ground to the template line, the back edges may be beveled, and finally the top is sanded and polished to a uniform dome.