Today as in ancient times, jade carving is a painstaking and exacting art form and care must be taken not to shatter the stone or make wasteful cuts. A carver first needs to study the heart of the stone; to see where its strengths lie in terms of colour, clarity and patterning, then work to illuminate the best of those elements within a piece.
At MOUNTAIN JADE, boulders are sawn into blocks, and then slabs of varying thickness using diamond saws. When the shape of the finished object is decided, a template is marked on the stone then a small trim saw is employed to cut the rough shape. Next a grinding wheel is utilized to pre-form the shape before it goes to the carvers bench where a high speed air tool running at 80,000 RPM slowly forms the final shape. Pre-polishing is done on a diamond cloth wheel whilst increasingly finer grades of sand paper and a buffing machine bring the finished item to nephrites well know gleaming lustre.
It is a very time consuming process, and a single carving, depending on its intricacy, can take anywhere from half a day, to an entire day to complete. With the more complex designs, like a hei tiki for instance, it can take between two to four days to complete. You are collecting something truly special.