Mystery Rock

[I found this years ago]

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While taking a break along the Trans-Canada Highway just outside of Thunder bay, Ontario this rock caught my eye along the shoulder of the road.  I have shown it to numerous people in attempts to identify what it is and so far no one has a clue.

As you can see, it is a cube of almost 2 inches on all sides.  That (in itself) is remarkable as is the fact that right angles are almost nonexistent in nature.

This rock is extremely heavy given its size, has absolutely no machining or tool marks (as in saw, press marks or chisel) and is definitely not magnetic.  I have used several various strength magnets in attempts to determine if it contains iron (given its weight).

I have had it for about ten years and once attempted to drill a hole into it so as to convert it to an incense holder.  It is impregnable even with a carbide tipped drill bit.

This little rock has ONE OTHER unique characteristic.  I have fun with a compass and the rock.  A compass, at rest and aimed due north moves radically when the rock is brought into close proximity to the compass.  The compass needle jumps quickly counterclockwise if the rock is anywhere within six inches.

I have a hunch that this rock has a story to be told.

Does anyone have an idea what it is?





One thought on “Mystery Rock”

  1. I saw your photo and question on Facebook, so I forwarded it to my brother, a retired geologist/mineralogist. Here are his thoughts:

    OK, now, not easy to identify the mystery rock based on what is given. The sample cannot be non-magnetic as it affects the compass, so we will take that it’s very weakly magnetic.

    The most common heavy mineral that commonly forms large cubic crystals is pyrite, but it is non-magnetic and softer than carbide. I can think of no other minerals that are quite heavy, extremely hard and found in large crystals.

    That would leave man-made metals as candidates. Weakly magnetic metals include alloys that contain some nickel and cobalt, but again these are softer than carbide. Only a few heavy metals may seem as hard as carbide, such as chromium, osmium, rhodium, rhenium, (when hardened by annealing), but these are normally nonmagnetic. There are also metallurgical raw materials such as ferromanganese and ferrochrome, which may be magnetic but are softer than carbide. And it would be unlikely that you would find such exotic stuff by the roadside!

    I would retry the carbide drill – perhaps a new sharp one. If it fails to affect the sample, I suggest that you take it to a museum, university or geological survey and ask their opinion.

    By the way, right angles in nature are really not so uncommon.

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