Fordite – beauty from waste.
These colourful specimens called fordite or Motor Agate, are the result of automotive enamel paint. Going back a good few years, before the days of electrostatic spray painting, cars were hand sprayed in big factories, with a lot of paint being wasted.
Over the course of time, the over-sprayed paint built up on the tracks on which the cars were painted and many colourful layers developed. These layers of paint were then repeatedly hardened in ovens when the cars were being cured.
Eventually, the paint build-up would become obstructing, or too thick and heavy, and had to be removed. As the story goes, some crafty workers with an eye for beauty realized that this unique by-product was worth salvaging. It was super-cured, patterned like psychedelic agate, and could be cut and polished with relative ease and people started making collectable pieces and jewellery.