About Fordite (a.k.a. Detroit Agate or Motor City Agate)
Fordite is a unique automotive enamel material with an interesting history. The original layered automotive paint slag “rough” was made incidentally, years ago, by the now extinct practice of hand spray-painting multiples of production cars in big automotive factories. The over sprayed paint in the painting bays gradually built up there and skids that the car frames were painted on. Over time, many colorful layers built up there. These layers were hardened repeatedly in the ovens that the car bodies went into to cure the paint. Some of these deeper layers were even baked 100 times.
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. Today it is scavenged mostly from abandoned factories. It it super-cured, patterned like psychedelic agate, and can be cut and polished with relative ease!
The old factory methods that created this incredible material are long gone. The Fordite “mines” are dry, so there is a limited supply of these beautiful pieces.