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3435 Views 9 Replies Last post: Sep 10, 2013 10:50 PM by Tabfish RSS
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Sep 6, 2013 8:06 PM

Unkown metal fossil fragment

IMG0003.jpgIMG0004.jpgIMG0005.jpgIMG0006.jpgIMG0008.jpgIm curious as to know if someone may have any idea what this could possibly be.The brown outside looks to be iron oxidization but on the inside it is clearly a greyish silvery color. I trimmed a piece off a smaller object i found and it clearly appears to be some sort of metal. It oxidizes black very quickly, very hard, it weighs 325grams, appears to have melted at some time, as to when I have know idea. I found it in a fossil deposit in the northwest territories Canada

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    Sep 6, 2013 8:22 PM (in response to dawsoncitychris)
    Re: Unkown metal fossil fragment

    wo a


    nortwest canada covers billions of miles

    need better Photos

    exact location

    the rock in which it was found ? sedimentry ? fossils present ? etc..


    but at aglance it looks like Iron pyrites

    or similar marcasites or chalcopyrite

    often found in shales mudstones its also v brittle and hassulfur smell me its hit / makes sparks too
    maracasite breaks down quite quickly to a weird powder pyrite  wil rust

    could also be heamatite which is red oxidized or grey silver

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        Sep 8, 2013 9:24 PM (in response to dawsoncitychris)
        Re: Unkown metal fossil fragment

        Just some passing thoughts...


        It does look like metal solidified from a liquid state.

        ...Perhaps in relation to mining.

        But it is a conundrum: how might it have been molten, while it burns explosively when put in a fire!


        Thinking of metals that rapidly oxidze black, radium (alarmingly) comes to mind!


        Surey not!

        Though there is the town called Radium, albeit a long way south in BC...


        Magnesium would burn explosively, but it oxidises white not black.

        Lithium oxide is also white.

        Sodium, potassium, calcium, rubidium ... all no.


        Determination of its density would help.





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            Sep 9, 2013 8:35 AM (in response to dawsoncitychris)
            Re: Unkown metal fossil fragment

            Molten metal never issues from the earth (on land or on the sea bed). Fractionation occurs, such that the matieral (solid / lava / gas / mineral solutions) may have a resticted chemistry (and hence mineralogy if solid), but it is never as refined as a single metal (nor mix of metals).

            But it was a thought.


            Need more basic info:

            - density

            - hardness

            - the colour of the flame when it burns (explodes)

            - specific location (town, grid ref, etc.) to be able to check for both: past mine workings; mapped geology



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              Sep 9, 2013 11:29 AM (in response to MikeHardman)
              Re: Unkown metal fossil fragment

              It explodes In fire ??????????/  what immediatly ?

              shit get a giger counte on it have u a UV light ? does it glow ?

              just pyrites marcasite has a lot of sulphur and does create sparks ... sooo can explode too ?

              Pity its not soft id say platinum


              well coming from N west terrotories thers limtless pos .. since NWT is location for some rare earth metals mines etc... platinum gold diamonds emeralds uranium  etc...

              ... or similar I mean poss get it tested ... since 'maybe' worth something .... maybe

              any ways up intresting to see if u get result

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    Sep 10, 2013 10:50 PM (in response to dawsoncitychris)
    Re: Unkown metal fossil fragment

    Hello Dawsoncitychris

    Can't see a fossil but I think you have found ether a specimen of iron pyrite or marcasite.

    We find almost exactly what looks like the same type and sometimes shape as you piece with the suggestion the mineral at sometime flowed into shape.

    The specimens we find are on the Holderness coast, East Yorkshire, they are usually found in patches on the beach were things of a similar density settle together along with modern day metal from the rapidly eroding boulder clay cliffs.

    I have posted an image of a Cretaceous sponge Laosciadia plana  from the Flamborian chalk (found as an erratic on the Holderness) it is about one kilo in weight because of its high pyrite content and has 'pyrite rot'

    It was in my collection but I put it outside to keep an eye on it when I saw the decay had taken hold, the resulting 'rust stain' on the limestone boulder was after only one day in the rain.



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