Tin 50mm Lucite Cube

Tin (5).JPG
Tin (5).JPG

Tin 50mm Lucite Cube

385.00

Tin is not the sexiest of elements. It brings to mind solder and pewter tchotchkes the sort slightly senile old ladies like to collect. There's not much you can do to rehabilitate this image. The soft and low-temp melting metal isn't terribly useful. It is, however, not as cheap as the phrase "tin can" might suggest. At $20,000 a ton, tin is four times more expensive than copper and nearly 20 times costlier than aluminum. But still, I think it's fair to say the image of cheapness is firmly ingrained regardless.

This sample may go a little ways in reversing that thinking. At nearly $400 it may be one of the most expensive pure-tin objects for sale anywhere. But this is only because laboratories don't often have flashy websites where you can click to add-to-cart and pay with PayPal. Working typically on government or university contracts (and usually working in government facilities or universities) laboratories will make custom order metal crystals for honestly stupid prices. A one inch lead crystal for $2,000, a six-nines purity manganese one for five or ten thousand. They send out quotes with breathtaking alacrity and on occasion are taken aback if you question the prices... as if paying thousands for a piece of metal that can be balanced on a pinky is perfectly reasonable.

Comparatively speaking that makes this beautiful monoscrystalline specimen of tin a bargain. At "only" 99.99% purity it is just barely pure enough for one of these labs to bother working with something so - basically - dirty and impure! They'd much rather offer you one in the six nines or above forgetting that these cubes are bound for customers who for the most part don't have money trees growing out in the backyard.

In any case, this is one fine lookin' piece with a shimmering surface criss-crossed with jewel-like patches intersecting each other. Weight is about 20 grams.

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