It will be another week before my stones are ready for pictures. This is a huge bummer for me. I suppose I can get in some reading in the meantime, but. . . .
For some reason completely unknown to me, the polishing compound I used for the agate and jasper cabochons turned into a horribly thick paste in the tumbler. It's supposed to be a slurry-type consistency. End result was that the stones didn't polish the way they're supposed to. Some of them were stuck together with this gunk, and it got into the tiniest cracks and crevices, virtually impervious to scribbing.
Two stones broke, which was a further disappointment. One of the two can be salvaged with a bit of grinding and then repolishing, but the other may be more of a loss. I'm not sure if this can be attributed to the polishing compound situation or not; stones do break, and especially agates that may have hidden fractures in the banding.
The other batch of stones in the other tumbler came out fine, using the same polishing compound. There was a difference, however, in that the gunky polish came from a different supplier. Whether that had anything to do with it, I don't know.
So I've put them in the tumbler again and will check them in a couple of days to see if the polish has gunked up again or not. If not, then all should be on track to be finished next week-end. We'll see.
At least one batch came out all right, and it had a couple pieces in it that I'll be working on in the next few days. I won't leave you completely without pretties!