Saturday, 31 October 2015

Tanzanite 101

Tanzanite is the blue/purple variety of the mineral zoisite. It was discovered in the Mererani Hills of Manyara Region in Northern Tanzania in 1967, near the city of Arusha and Mount Kilimanjaro.
Tanzanite is a relatively new gemstone in the world of gemology and jewelry. Since its discovery, tanzanite has sold for as little as $20 per carat and as much as $1,000 per carat or more, for gem-quality, finely coloured stones.

That price may seem like a bargain in time, as tanzanite is a single-source gemstone and that source is expected to be mined out within the next 20 to 30 years based on the latest mining information.






Monday, 26 October 2015

Cool Cars at Barrett-Jackson


Lot 42: 1989 Jaguar XJS Convertible - $9900
The Barrett-Jackson auto auction produces large prices but there are still some good buys to be had. These cars may not have been the cream of the crop, but they're cool machines.
Lot 205: 1965 Ford Mustang - $11,000
Lot 39.1: 1969 Buick Custom Sport Wagon - $14,850

A 400 cubic inch "big block" with 350 Turbo transmission was found in the GS series.
Lot 461: 1991 Chevrolet Corvette Callaway ZR1 - $30,800.

The fourth-generation Corvette isn’t remembered fondly but in the hands of noted Corvette tuner Calloway, this ZR1 makes 550hp through a six-speed manual. It’s a very rare find.
Lot 519: 1981 Chevrolet Camaro - $6050.

Second-generation Camaros are quickly rising in value. This particular example has Z/28 trim, T-tops, and a 350 cubic-inch V8. The buyer got a bargain.
Lot 807: 1967 Chevrolet Impala SS Convertible - $22,000

Impalas were all over, but one of the best buys was this all original 1967 SS. This car has all the right parts, including the 275hp 327 cubic-inch V8 mated to a four-speed manual transmission.
Lot 7000: 1967 Chevrolet Camaro Custom Coupe - $34,650

Similar Camaros in both stock and custom trim sell closer to $100,000. This one slipped through. It’s a keeper with a 475hp V8, Muncie four-speed manual transmission, front disc brakes and a complete restoration.


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Sunday, 25 October 2015

The Ron Pratte Collection

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. — Barrett-Jackson, The World’s Greatest Collector Car Auctions™, is honored to be selected by world-class businessman and car collector Ron Pratte for the sale of his world-renowned collection at the Barrett-Jackson Scottsdale 2015 auction.

Ron Pratte, a businessman who demands perfection in everything he has a hand in, built the majority of his collection at Barrett-Jackson auctions. This pristine collection includes Carroll Shelby’s personal vehicle – the only remaining 1966 Shelby Cobra Super Snake, that sold for a world record $5.5 million, and a Pontiac Bonneville Special Concept Car, one of only two.

Shelby pegged the car's 0-60-mph time at just over three seconds.
The Pontiac Bonneville Special is a purpose-built concept car unveiled at the General Motors Motorama in 1954, the first 2-seater sports car Pontiac ever produced.

Two prototypes, one painted metallic bronze and one emerald green, were built with the intention of unveiling them simultaneously at the Grand Ballroom of the Waldorf in New York and the Pan Pacific Auditorium in Los Angeles in 1954.

The 1954 Pontiac Bonneville Special concept car, went for $3.3 million

The former record for a Tucker was $ 1.1m. $2,915,000.00
"This year's Scottsdale auction was on a scale unlike anything in our 44-year history," said Craig Jackson, chairman and CEO of Barrett-Jackson, in a statement

The bus roared to $4 million on the block.

This 1947 Bentley Mark VI last sold for $ 1.7m. $2,750,000.00

One of only 153 1968 Shelby GT 500s. $440,000.


1957 Desoto Adventurer Covertible $225,500.00

1955 Chevrolet Nomad Autorama Custom Wagon

Friday, 23 October 2015

The Malagana Treasure

In 1992 a sugarcane farm employee was working the fields at the Hacienda Malagana located in Colombia‘s Cauca Valley. The ground gave way, and both man and machine tumbled into the hole. The worker noticed shiny, golden objects in the dirt. Upon closer inspection he realized he’d found treasure, ancient gold artifacts from burial tombs of a previously-unknown indigenous culture of Colombia.
Jaguar lime flask with nose ornament, Calima Malagana, 200 BC
His secret didn’t last long. Word spread like wildfire, and a looting frenzy began. Between October and December 1992, approximately 5000 people are said to have descended upon Hacienda Malagana in what was called the “Malagana Gold Rush”.

Almost four tons of pre-Columbian artifacts were removed from the site to be melted down or sold to collectors in what was described as the “grandest haul since the Conquistadores.”
By 1994 the treasure hunters had given up as the cemetery site had been destroyed, and archaeologists were finally able to learn more about the mysterious culture. Research indicated that the habitation site dated to between 300 BC and 300 AD.


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