View Full Version : I find marbles while diving...

07-14-2010, 07:58 AM
Most of them are clean but occasionally they come home dull of filthy, can I tumble them to polish them up and not degrade their value?


Road Dog
07-14-2010, 11:07 AM
I've had some marbles polished by folks that do that sort of thing. Marble would have to be pretty sad for me to have that done though. The marble itself would have to warrant polishing value wise or rarity. In a case where a marble is so scarred up it has no value a good polish can help it , but it's value would still be far below an unaltered one. Some folks just like pretty shiney marbles for their own enjoyment. In that case, polish away.

Looks like you have some interesting ones in that batch.

07-14-2010, 11:11 AM
I think that's when you make a fortune on them by selling them to sea glass collectors![:D]

Road Dog
07-14-2010, 11:26 AM
Here is one I bought recently. It's just over 1" dia. It was a fish tank marble. It will be light polished or buffed in it's future.


07-14-2010, 01:27 PM
Thanks for the info Road Dog,

I love picking them up and get between 5-15 on every river dive I do and I got several on Monday during a trash removal dive in front of a home that dates to 1820's. Several were similar in color and pattern to the one you just purchased. What do YOU look for in a marble when you are in a purchasing mood?

Enclosed is a poor photo of a 'shooter marble' also recovered on monday, I say poor because the photo does no justice to the colors which are purple, yellow and white and poor because it is in with some pipes I found in the same area. I can take better photos if you are interested.


Road Dog
07-14-2010, 02:35 PM
Could be a Marble King. Hard to tell from that angle. Just going by colors. I look for odd Slags I don't have and any slag over 3/4" is of interest. Especially purples, aquas, reds and oranges.

07-14-2010, 02:43 PM
I know people tumble the sulfide animal marbles all the time.
I doubt you can tumble a painted marble.

Road Dog
07-14-2010, 03:04 PM
Sulphides do pretty well. Painted marbles? LOL Basically I don't like to polish a marble if it changes the original glass pattern. Veneered marbles don't fare too well either say Marble Kings and Vitros for example.

07-14-2010, 03:54 PM
Well now with all that said I am out of my league here, I recover them when I see them on the bottom simply because they are glass and colorful. As for all of these names and terms I am presently clueless and will need some books to help me before I post in this forum again. I feel like I did the first time I found this site for bottle collecting. Furthermore I did not realize that they were so popular or collectible.

How should I be storing these finds of mine Road Dog to maximize their collector value should I have any worth re-sale?

Road Dog
07-14-2010, 04:20 PM
They are fine in that bowl as long as you don't shake them around. If you have an pristine ones in there that might be good I would separate them out. I got plenty around here in Jars and containers. The one I circled in the bowl looks interesting. Got a better pic?


07-14-2010, 06:04 PM
I will dig that one out tomorrow and take a detailed shot on macro for you and I will adhere to the recommendations from others about shooting the poles and seams to establish color patterns.

07-15-2010, 03:21 AM
Nice marbles and bowl! What's the bowl's story ( besides it being spongeware)?

07-15-2010, 10:47 AM
Hi RedGinger,

The bowl was one of my first finds in a river about 20 years ago, it came from a huge city dump that had slid underwater over the years. It has been on the shelf ever since and is refered to as a "Nappy" or baking dish and is Redware with a cobalt sponge glaze. It seemed like an ideal spot to display marbles as my wife loves them and takes all that I bring home as "hers"...

07-15-2010, 11:18 AM
Hey Matt,
I'd like to say that I've lost my marbles, but I've never had them. I have never once found a marble while diving (and I have over 900 logged tanks!). I'm not sure if its the blackwater stuff where I'm going or if I'm not looking for them??? Regardless, you've got an impressive array of marbles there.

07-15-2010, 03:39 PM
Hi blobbottlebob,

I too dive in black water, mostly rivers of course and these latest marbles came from a lake bottom in front of a row of homes from the 1820's.