Articles about Colored Stones
Afghanistan is a country blessed like few others in its mineral wealth. By some estimates the untapped gemstone deposits in this country are estimated to be $300 billion USD. However, the geological surveying of the country has been less than 10% of the area! Precious minerals, oil and gas have been estimated to be in the 1 trillion to 3 trillion ranges. It’s no wonder why Afghanistan is quickly moving to try to mine and develop so many of these resources.
This article is the second in a series on how gemstones are faceted. This gemstone cutting tutorial takes the reader from rough gemstone to a finished 4.59 carat cushion. The original piece of rhodolite garnet rough was 10.2 carats and was shaped well for a cushion cut.
From Faceting Limits
The pavilion and bezel slopes commonly recommended for faceting are the result of trial-and-error and human judgment. This explains why references differ in their recommendations.
Trial-and-error is an effective way to solve complex problems until a better way comes along, but it usually finds only the best solution in the range of experimentation. Other good solutions may exist – beyond the bad ones – but are found only by accident. This has been as true in faceting as in many other scientific fields.
I am often asked by clients, friends and family about how gemstones are faceted. I designed this photo pictorial to illustrate to the steps of the gemstone cutting process. The gemstone I selected for this first pictorial was a 13.3ct piece of rhodolite garnet from Africa. Due to the shape of the rough, I chose an oval design for the finished gemstone. The pictures below show the gem progress from a piece of rough to a finished gemstone. Each photograph is described in depth to highlight what is occurring during the gemstone cutting process.