ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Mineral Collecting

Updated on December 17, 2016

Assorted rocks and minerals

A collection of different rocks and minerals
A collection of different rocks and minerals


A Herkimer Diamond crystal
A Herkimer Diamond crystal

Collecting rocks,minerals and crystals,tools you will need to go field collecting

Mineral collecting in the field is a great hobby for everyone.Adults and children can enjoy a day out in nature.Field collecting also can be a great way to get exercise,as it may include a hike to the collecting area.All in all it is wholesome hobby and one the entire family can enjoy.

In these times of economic hardships it is a inexpensive way to entertain children.It only takes a few tools to get started.First and foremost you will need safety glasses.A small digging claw like you use in the garden makes a great digging tool,or you can use a small garden shovel to dig with.These can be bought for a dollar at the dollar stores.A rock hammer or a masons hammer,a chisel and a container to carry your rocks in.A masons hammer can be found at a hardware store and a cold chisel also.Both the hammer and chisel can be bought for under 20 dollars.Never use a regular hammer to break rocks with.Regular hammers are not tempered and will chip when used to hit rocks.This is very dangerous and can cause eye injuries..Any old bucket can be used to carry rocks in.I have found old dry wall plaster buckets work great and can sometimes be gotten for free from construction workers.Some people use backpacks to carry their rocks in.Using a backpack works well as you can carry food and drink in the pack also.A good field collecting book is also needed to identify rocks and minerals.If you are going for gem minerals or crystals it is a good idea to carry newspaper or paper towels to wrap them in so they do not get damaged.So there you have it.A few tools and you are ready to go field collecting.

As you progress in the hobby you may want to include more tools,Pry bars,sledge hammers,hand truck or a wagon for long hauls over flat terrain.As I became interested in fluorescent minerals I found a mineral lamp for field collecting a valuable tool.Another little item is a jewelers loop.Micro crystals can be very beautiful and some collectors only collect micro mounts.Micro mounts are small crystals.Collecting is for myself and many a never ending form of enjoyment and learning.

Thumbnail Specimens

A collection of Herkimer Diamond crystals
A collection of Herkimer Diamond crystals

Quartz crystal collecting

Different Collecting Ideas

As a mineral collector you can become aware of different aspects of collecting.You can specialize in a certain mineral ,location,size and other qualities such as ore minerals,gemstones or precious metals.

Mineral specimen

Garnierite mineral specimen
Garnierite mineral specimen

Size Matters

Mineral collectors have separated groups of mineral sizes to categorize their collections .This way we all come together on the size by placing the minerals in each group.Here is the list of common mineral sizes.

Thumbnail(TN) 3/4"to 11/8" and any specimen that fits into a 1.25 inch square "Perky Box" .

Miniature(Min) 11/8"to 2"specimen larger than a thumbnail (TN), that can fit into a 2-inch square box.

Small Cabinet Specimen(SCab) 2"to 4" a specimen larger than a Miniature (Min) and smaller than a Cabinet (Cab).

Cabinet(Cab) Over 4"A specimen larger than 4 inches (10 cm ) in a dimension.

Museum Large specimens with exceptional qualities are called museum pieces.

It does pay to know the different sizes and the names when you talk with other collectors.This is especially true if you do trading or selling of the specimens.Most people collect only one size and want only that size for their collection.Many people do not get to strict and will vary a bit on the size,still someone who collects Thumbnails is not going to put a Cabinet piece into his collect usually.As I have said some collectors like my self are not to rigid and collect in different size specimens.The fact is being a field collector I have pieces from every size in my personal collection.

Collecting quartz crystals

Mineral Collecting


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      I have a rock it's like 5'' x7'' garnierite nickel ore rock of the new caledonia mines of November 1967 does any one know how much $ is it worth ??

    • glowingrocks profile imageAUTHOR


      7 years ago from New York

      Thanks for stopping bye vocalcoach.Glad you liked this hub.

    • vocalcoach profile image

      Audrey Hunt 

      7 years ago from Idyllwild Ca.

      I enjoyed this hub very much. Looking forward to reading more of your hubs. You are really an expert in this field. Rated up - :) vocalcoach

    • glowingrocks profile imageAUTHOR


      7 years ago from New York


      The search begins each spring.The mining gets expensive and the work is hard.You have to enjoy it or it is NO fun at all.Some collecting can be easy in old or working quarries for instance or along rivers and streams.Thanks for stopping in.

    • attemptedhumour profile image


      7 years ago from Australia

      hi glowing rocks, i haven't tried mineral collecting and being 59 i think that i may have left my run a little late. i've got a mate who lives in Coober Pede who used to dig for opals, but the fuel and dynamite is too expensive to warrant it. He owns two houses cut into a hill. He's finished one and is working on the other. It's a harsh environment, but he seems to like it. Cheers and good luck with your search.


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)