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What guides your meteorite collecting?

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#1 mwedel

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Posted 28 September 2018 - 04:51 AM

For a long time the only meteorite specimens I had were a 40g Campo del Cielo, a 186g Sikhote-Alin shrapnel, and a fleck of Canyon Diablo from the gift shop at Meteor Crater. But I seem to have caught the bug. I'm up to about 10 now, and my enthusiasm is not slowing down.

 

So I'm curious: for those of you with meteorite collections, what sorts of things do you look for? Trying to get as many classes as possible? Geographic locations of falls? Interesting histories? Aesthetics? All of the above?

 

Here are the 40g Campo, 186g Sikhote, and a cast of the Middlesborough meteorite, with a 1cm cube for scale:

 

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#2 lee14

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Posted 28 September 2018 - 07:17 AM

While my personal preference is for irons, there are collectors who focus on every one of the subcategories you mention. Micros are popular, because you can acquire a representative sample of location, type, witnessed, or historical falls. Some focus on oriented specimens, some on 'hand' pieces. Best advice, buy what you like and find interesting.

 

Lee


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#3 Allanbarth1

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Posted 28 September 2018 - 08:50 AM

I have a big interest in meteorites but have not had the opportunity to actually put hands on any,.....yet. I find myself looking at what catches my eye as of now. Admittedly I don't know if my interest will change once I get my hands on my first sample. So far I have a list of about a dozen I want to buy. They span the gamut of location, composition, size. The ones I tend to really want though don't seem to follow any particular style of collecting.  I tend to see an eye catching sample and say ooh I want that. 

 

The reason I haven't pulled the trigger yet is that I want to see more in person as I've only been seriously looking and learning for a bit less than a year. I also want to attend a few shows to see some samples in person. So my wants may change, but as of the last year I tend to want to purchase what looks cool in my eyes. 


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#4 mwedel

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Posted 28 September 2018 - 11:44 PM

Maybe it's shallow, but what gets me most excited is stuff I can touch. Turning over an iron in my hand and daydreaming about the core of the planetoid that it came from. Running my finger across a polished chondrite and knowing that I'm touching material that's older than our planet...that is an arresting thought.


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#5 contrailmaker

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Posted 30 September 2018 - 02:14 AM

What got me started was my interest in the Apollo program and the lunar rocks they brought back. This led to my collection of lunar as well as martian meteorites. It also led to my interest in geology and study of the subject. I also have a few HEDs that are thought to originate on asteroid 4 Vesta or maybe other asteroids and a few “oddballs” that I just find interesting like a Gujba and a few pallasites.

 

Really blows my mind that I can hold a piece of the moon or Mars in my hand. Places that I have observed and fallen in love with since a very early age but that I could never visit. What a journey that rock has taken!

 

CM


Edited by contrailmaker, 30 September 2018 - 02:19 AM.

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#6 mwedel

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Posted 04 October 2018 - 01:11 AM

Yeah, lunar and martian meteorites are pretty mind-blowing. I don't have any lunar samples yet. I do have a tiny piece of the martian meteorite Zagami, in a Mini Museum 2nd Edition. It's only about the size of a big grain of sand, but hey, it came from Mars! I'm happy.


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#7 contrailmaker

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Posted 04 October 2018 - 01:06 PM

Yup, all that counts is that it is from Mars. Most of my specimens are pretty small.

 

CM


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#8 Starry Messenger

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Posted 06 October 2018 - 09:06 PM

Believe it or not, my state of Vermont is the only state in the nation that has not had a meteor fall documented with an actual meteorite! As a metal detector enthusiast (I prospect for gold here in Vermont, with some success), I am taking my detector over some of the hundreds and hundreds of rock walls that were made here when the land was cleared for sheep and hay farming, back in the mid 1800s (of course, I wouldn’t be able to detect stony meteorites this way). This was back when the land was 80% forested. After the walls were built, the landscape was only 20% forested. Just think of the value of the sole meteorite found in Vermont! I could either sell it through Sotheby’s or Christie’s, or I could bust it into hundreds of little pieces and sell it through, you guessed it, Cloudy Nights, where I could get much more than it’s really worth! Ha!


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#9 goodricke1

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Posted 07 October 2018 - 05:30 AM

The historic falls with dramatic eye witness accounts are the ones that do it for me, although of course even a crumb of these costs the Earth. Probably my favourite story is the fall in Wales, UK where one of the locals got such a shock that he never took off his hat for the rest of his life, even in bed.... I feel that the modern falls being tracked by radar and numerous sky cameras has taken the romance out of meteorite hunting somehow!


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#10 peter scherff

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Posted 27 October 2018 - 10:57 AM

Hi,

My meteorite purchases (and sales) have changed over the years. When I started buying meteorites I was driven by esthetics. I can make a great pendant from that Esquel or I should make my wedding ring for that Gibeon. However I quickly became fascinated by the science behind these visitors from outer space. This Canyon Diablo made a huge hole in Arizona. This Zagami is a piece of the crust of Mars. This Campo Del Cielo is the core of a destroyed world. This Murchison contains sugars & amino acids. Next I started looking for meteorites with stories. This Sylacauga hit a woman. This Willamette was revered by Native Americans. This Forest City was arrested. This Elbogen was believed to be a witch and was drowned in a well. This Holbrook was stolen from NASA. This Bishopville was found by slaves. Currently I only buy Meteorites that I can use in public outreach events (with the exception of meteorites that I get for resale). So I stay away from meteorites that are not interesting to the general public. No dust specks of flakes of rust. However the meteorites that I take to outreach events have gotten smaller. My old man’s back is much happier hauling the lighter meteorites.

Thanks,

 

Peter


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#11 Kent10

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Posted 27 October 2018 - 03:38 PM

I bought my 1st meteorite for $20 and couldn't believe how beautiful it was.  That was the start of a continued interest and many more purchases.  I bought for esthetics but while learning along the way.  The problem for me is, I think all meteorites are beautiful, well almost all.  I have been disappointed with only a few that I purchased but they always "grow" on me.  It has been hard for me to sell any of my meteorites even after purchasing a larger or "better" sample.  I still want to keep the other.  I get attached to them smile.gif.


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