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Another Fluorescence ques....in bars/clubs

Discussion in 'RockyTalky' started by uvaray, Jun 21, 2010.

  1. uvaray
    Rough_Rock

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    by uvaray » Jun 21, 2010
    Hi everyone,
    I''ve basically read all the threads about fluorescence and I don''t mind a stone w/ strong blue fluorescence. My only concern is how the diamond with strong blue fluorescence will look, in a setting, under black lights. My girlfriend and I still go out to bars and clubs that have black lights and I don''t want the stone to glow blue.

    Can anyone help me on this? Anyone have pictures?

    Thanks in advance!
     
  2. Stone-cold11
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    by Stone-cold11 » Jun 21, 2010
    Strong blue will glow in those light. Just like these images [​IMG]
     
  3. kenny
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    by kenny » Jun 21, 2010
    If you don''t want it to glow blue in a bar with black lights get a stone with less fluorescence.
     
  4. John Pollard
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    by John Pollard » Jun 21, 2010
    Ah yes, the famous "boogielight" effect. The amount of fluorescent excitement you'll see depends on the specific diamond and the strength/proximity of the UV source. With sbf and vsbf you'll definitely see fluorescent life. Below is a good photo of very strong blue fluorescence as it may appear in a club (credit klyonker from SMTR).

    Sunlight also has UV in it, but what you'll see in a sbf or vsbf diamond can vary a lot, from nearly nothing to visible blue in its performance suite. You're right to presume that you'll see the effect best in a nightclub - or under the groovy lights in your teen's bedroom with blacklight posters (are teens still doing this?).

    The trade has an old history of discounting fluorescent diamonds which continues even though GIA debunked the myth that fluorescence was deleterious over a decade ago [GIA study with more photos]. In fact there are many enthusiasts who seek fluorescent diamonds because they love the effect.


    [​IMG]
     
  5. elle_chris
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    by elle_chris » Jun 21, 2010
    Provided the strong blue doesn''t cause any issues, it''s really up to you. Some people here love it, I''m not one of them. [​IMG]
     
  6. MonkeysInk
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    by MonkeysInk » Jun 21, 2010
    My E cushion has strong blue and it glows like a lightbulb under UV. The picture that John Pollard posted above is a totally accurate representation of what it looks like. I think that it''s beautiful and I love to show off the blue glow on the rare instance that I see it, although I can completely understand how someone might not.
     
  7. oldminer
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    by oldminer » Jun 21, 2010
    We used to make pave'' ID bracelets with people''s names or initials in highly fluorescent diamonds. The letter remained hidden until the owner went to a disco where their hidden message was readily revealed. I think it was a good idea, but we never promoted it enough to make it a success. We had several orders with blue, yellow or even orange fluorescent messages on these pieces. It was fun to pick the fluorescent stones from large packages of melee and dealers liked the fact that we were taking diamonds that others might have rejected.
     
  8. Isabelle
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    by Isabelle » Jun 21, 2010
    Hi John!! I love reading your posts b/c I learn so much. So I have questions: The trade''s continued history of discounting diamonds with strong fluorescence means that if the poster buys a diamond with strong fluorescence, it won''t be worth as much on the market as an equal one that doesn''t have it, correct? And even if it is never sold and only used as an heirloom, the strong fluorescence will affect the diamond''s value on the open market later on down the line, correct? I read that diamonds with strong fluorescence can look cloudy in certain lighting. And even if some vendors say that isn''t true, (I know of certain upper end vendors who say it IS true), it is still true that such a diamond won''t have the same value to the trade as an equal one without it. So why buy one with it? A well cut diamond already looks amazing in sunlight, low lights, etc. Who needs it to glow blue as well, especially when you lose so much else in terms of stone value? Thanks, John!
     
  9. Stone-cold11
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    by Stone-cold11 » Jun 21, 2010
    Before early 70s, it was much sought after, especially colorless flour stones and commanded a higher premium. The discount begins after. So it might go back to that era with more education, it's pricing structure is a trend set by human.

    My preference is VSBF. I do not care if it is valuable or not in the resale market as you will never sell back for a profit.

    So buy what you like, not what others tell you to like.
     
  10. Todd Gray
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    by Todd Gray » Jun 21, 2010
    I''m a big fan of fluorescence in diamonds, but it is definitely a matter of personal taste... strong to very strong fluorescence is purported to have a negative impact on about 2% of gem quality diamonds, this is the "oily" or "hazy" appearance that is often discussed. My late wife Robin used to wear a D color, Very Strong Blue which definitely had a hazy look to it when viewed in direct sunlight, the rest of the time it looked fine; she actually purchased the diamond as an educational tool to demonstrate the effect of fluorescence upon a diamond - the lesson would start out with her handing a few of her rings to a client, talking about fluorescence, asking them if they could see fluorescence within the diamonds (in normal light) and then when they said "no" she would plop her rings down inside of the GIA Diamond Light, kick on the UV bulb and watch their reaction when some of the diamonds in her rings went bright neon blue...

    Fluorescence is not a bad thing, it''s not a good thing, it''s merely an internal characteristic which is part of describing a diamond... At one point in history, strong blue fluorescence was so heavily sought after by consumers seeking "blue white diamonds" that the Federal Trade Commission had to create Rule 28 which restricted misuse of the term (allegedly because ''some'' jewelers were using blue light bulbs to artificially create a ''blue white'' effect within diamonds which did not have the proper level of fluorescence) and prices for ''blue white'' diamonds were higher at the time than for diamonds without... then prices for fluorescent diamonds were discounted (like 2-3%) when people in one of the Asian countries discovered fluorescence in their diamonds and became upset - as I recall, DeBeers ran some kind of buy-back / exchange program at the time to maintain the desire for diamonds in the region; then demand for "cool looking" diamonds picked back up after awhile and things stabilized; these days I don''t see a real discount for diamonds with strong to very strong fluorescence unless it is like a D/E color; it seems heavily sought after in diamonds of warmer color, so obviously no discount there... the bottom line? Buy it if you like it; avoid it if you don''t.

    Personally, I''m rather fond of Medium Blue Fluorescence in ''any'' color diamond [​IMG]
     
  11. Isabelle
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    by Isabelle » Jun 21, 2010
    Thanks Stone-Cold and Todd! But isn''t it more that the education about diamonds amongst the trade improved in the70''s; not an arbitrary trend, right? It''s about the fact that a diamond with this trait can look cloudy/hazy in sunlight. I''d never want to sacrifice that great performance you get from a diamond in sunlight; to me that''s when a diamond looks it''s best. I remember when we bought our diamond in 1996. The vendor, (a great guy who owns a B&M) told me straight off that you can only expect to get 20 to 25% of what you paid back should you sell it. But whatever it is, you''d get less for one with fluorescence (unless it was a J or warmer), wouldn''t you?--All things being equal?. It hurts the value to have a diamond that looks hazy in sunlight. If it didn''t, high end retailers would carry them, right?
     
  12. Stone-cold11
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    by Stone-cold11 » Jun 21, 2010
    No, because during the investment craze of the 70s, suddenly you require a lot more jewelry salespersons and they are not trained jewelers but just anyone off the street, they do not have the time to teach them what fluor is so just a broad stroke and branded it bad when only a small number actually has oily/hazy look.

    My VSBs just look slightly blue in the sun, not oily/hazy.

    Ya right, 25%, more like at least 50% off your buying price, that applies to all diamond, fluor or no.

    Again, you have your personal preference, I have mine and I know I love my VSB. I do not care what the high end jeweler says, whether they carry it or not does not prove anything but just the way the market trend is at the moment and they stock goods that move the fastest.
     
  13. Circe
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    by Circe » Jun 21, 2010
    Isabelle, the thing is ... you never really want to buy a diamond with an eye towards selling it back: you''ll never recoup a significant sum. But you might well get a discount that makes it worthwhile and buys you a lot more size in the meantine: when I was buying a pendant stone, my desire for strong blue got me a stone that was a full third or a carat larger than what I would have gotten otherwise.

    It is, as Todd observes, a colorless stone, and the fluorescence is, sadly, not visible in sunlight, as is the case with 99% of fluorescent stones. Nest time I buy a stone - I balance Elle out by adoring fluorescence - I''ll be sure to see it in bright sunlight before I buy!

    Uvaray, strong blue will definitely be visible under a black light. That said, I see it as a huge bonus. A) All the drunk people who paid for glowsticks think it is The Best Thing Ever!!! (I speak from experience). B) Everybody knows that your diamond, at least, is real: as far as I know, no other colorless stones (at least, not the ones that can be subbed for diamonds) fluoresce blue.
     
  14. Isabelle
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    by Isabelle » Jun 21, 2010
    Stone-Cold, I meant you''d only recoup 20 to 25% of what you paid for it, not that you''d lose 20 to 25%. :). I don''t see a connection between untrained salespersons and the value of strong fluorescent diamonds on the open market. They aren''t worth as much, all other aspects being equal.--that''s my main point---and the reason is b/c they can look cloudy at times. I do see how there could be exceptions I guess like in terms of whitening a warmer color diamond, but it''s probably easier for an upper end vendor to just reject the diamond than make an exception that the market won''t make.
     
  15. elle_chris
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    by elle_chris » Jun 21, 2010
    Isabelle- You''re right that in many B&M''s, colorless stones will be discounted for Fluoro. I''ve seen it too. Don''t know at what grade the fluoro doesn''t make much of a difference in pricing.

    I''ve never cared about fluoro. In fact my G has medium fluoro (still haven''t noticed it), until I saw a stone with what I''m guessing was strong or very strong. It looked very bluish and while not hazy or oily, it did appear to change the look of the diamond. Not bad, just different.
     
  16. Stone-cold11
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    by Stone-cold11 » Jun 21, 2010
    So do you understand what cause fluor?

    It is the oily/hazy stones that is the rare thing, most fluor stones will not have that, most fluor stones will not look cloudy at any time, even in UV light.

    Worth, to who and by what criteria? Price? What if the present trend reverse again? Then it will worth more. But the stone stay the same. All things being equal, a stone with flour, without being oily/cloudy, will perform just as well as a stone without which is what I am saying. You are throwing out the baby with the wash water by rejecting all fluor stones just based on a selling price of the stones and that only a small minority of the stones will perform badly.
     
  17. yssie
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    by yssie » Jun 21, 2010
    I don't care about the presence or absence of fluoro, but I do care that if a ring has more than one stone, they all fluoresce either similarly or in pattern. A ring with a few melee stones that fluoresce strongly scattered here and there in no clear pattern would bother me, as would a three-stone in which one sidestone had visible fluor and the other had none..


    If you don't want it to glow in a bar/nightclub, choose a stone w/ none/neg/faint fluor.
     
  18. John Pollard
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    by John Pollard » Jun 21, 2010
    Glad to help Isabelle, and thanks for the generous comment.

    Any discount extended for fluorescence will be tiny compared to the overall value of the diamond. It's more important to point out that the fundamental value reduction for consumers wishing to resell diamonds is massive to begin-with. The "open market" is often limited to consignment, eBay or professional buyers who will offer far less than what was paid. This is one of the reasons trade-up and buy-back programs offered by sellers who will exchange or pay a strong % back have proven popular with consumer enthusiasts.

    In recent years many people have asked "why discount at all?" It's a reasonable question and we should continue to ask - although I'm not complaining. The main reason is historical abuse associated with the term "blue-white," which was eventually outlawed by the FTC. Another reason has to do with GIA's color grading lamps emitting a small amount of UV; the notion is that fluorescent diamonds get a friendlier playing field. Yet another reason is that 'fluorescence' written on a grading report makes that diamond harder to sell for the average commercial salesperson - who may have been working at Payless Shoes or Panda Express last week.

    You'll have a hard time finding them. "Overblue" diamonds are so rare GIA could not even find enough to include them in their comprehensive survey in 1997. Many decades ago one of the larger South African mines hit a vein of them. This was at a time when nearly all the world's new supply was coming out of SA. Logically the legend established itself but their frequency subsided long ago. In this day and age "overblues" are rare, bordering on an obscure anomoly. You can find older ones in estate jewelry but even in Florida - where estate pieces trade like crazy - fewer than 20 were seen over a 28 year period by PS appraiser Richard Sherwood. Far more people worry about this than actually encounter it. What is most important to you, the consumer, is to always work with a trusted expert or brand where you know such a diamond would be disqualified. This is no different than trusting your expert to protect you from issues posed by dense clouds, feathers, graining, etc.

    Some popular appraisers answered questions about fluorescence in section II of this journal article.

    As said, not really a meaningful loss of value. As for 'glowing blue' I've owned neg, mbf and sbf diamonds of top cut quality. All of them looked fantastic to me. The sbf had more blue flashes than the others in sunlight. The mb had a soft glow in a nightclub and the sbf regularly got "cool diamond!" comments when it was loudly-glowing on the dance floor...though I suspect m'lady wearing it had some to do with that.

    I like the warm blue glow. Others don't. Some others are neutral and there are some people who don't even like diamonds (gasp). Any choice is fine - how boring would it be if we all wanted the same thing?
     
  19. Rockdiamond
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    by Rockdiamond » Jun 21, 2010
    NO question consumers take a bath if they want to resell a diamond they''ve bought over the past few years.
    But stones of Medium and Strong Blue do trade at a better price than inert stones in the higher colors.
    If we''re talking about an E/VS1 2.00ct, there''s a significant difference in price, so the consumer has less to recover.
    Once we get below G color the difference in price is far less, percentage-wise ( between an inert and a medium or strong blue)

    Actually ( I''m older than John) - 30 years ago fl stones actually sold at a premium. When I worked at Harry Winston, in the late ''70''s GIA reports were relatively rare- and fluorescent stones were known as "Premier"
    Over the past 15 years that''s changed.....big time.


    This of course will not help uvray when they go into their favorite disco, and the ring starts to glow!
     
  20. Isabelle
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    by Isabelle » Jun 21, 2010
    Thanks for sharing your own consumer stories Elle and Circe! It''s interesting how you''ve benefitted from getting larger stones based on the hit the strong fluor stones take on the market. I also take the word of someone who owns the diamond as to how it performs IRL. These points are somewhat analagous to those made by David regarding the fact that an eye is the best judge of a diamond''s beauty. Thanks again.
     
  21. Isabelle
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    by Isabelle » Jun 21, 2010
    Thanks Stone-Cold. I see your point. I just wouldn''t want the primary thing someone sees about my diamond is that it''s blue. I''d want them to notice the sparkle. If it performs as well as a non fluor diamond in sunlight, then to me that signifies you don''t see a lot of blue whic would draw comments but maybe would detract from the perception of how it sparkles. If you say it wouldn''t in most cases then I guess it depends on the buyer''s wants and how they feel about buying a diamond with lower market value, fair or not.
     
  22. Isabelle
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    by Isabelle » Jun 21, 2010
    Good point Yssie, regarding melée.
     
  23. Isabelle
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    by Isabelle » Jun 21, 2010
    John, as always your knowledge is overwhelming. So interesting to note that they''re hard to even find these days and that the discount isn''t usually that much. But then why did that other PSer say she was able to get a much larger stone by going with strong fluor? In any case, when I''m back on my computer I''ll read the article you linked to. I''m currently posting from iPhone which is hard. :) Thank you John!
     
  24. Isabelle
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    by Isabelle » Jun 21, 2010
    Thanks for yur insight David! Much like your point on the beauty of 60/60 diamonds, it seems that in the case of fluor, the eye can be a better judge for actual performance than what the market says the stone is supposedly worth, how it''s supposedly performing, and whether or not it sparkles like mad. :) Just because the market says it isn''t/doesn''t/won''t, doesn''t mean the market is right. But it might affect price and for the past forty years (?) it has affected resale value. [​IMG]
     
  25. dreamer_dachsie
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    by dreamer_dachsie » Jun 21, 2010
    Even in strong sublight a SBF diamond does not really look blue. The appearance in the photo Jon posted is under black light and you really never seen that in any natural lighting environment. Besides, diamond don''t really sparkle in direct sunlight, they will exhibit fire, and I cannot image flour affecting fire since it affects body color of the diamond not the refraction of light.

    If a buyer cares about market value when buying a diamond, then they should only buy D-IF stones [​IMG] I think considering market value when buying a diamond is focussing on the wrong thing.

    As to this comment: " I don''t see a connection between untrained salespersons and the value of strong fluorescent diamonds on the open market. They aren''t worth as much, all other aspects being equal.--that''s my main point---and the reason is b/c they can look cloudy at times." The point that Stone is making is that the reason they are worth less than non flour stones is NOT because of the hazy oily issue. It is because of marketing and the change in diamond selling that happened in the 70s. It is not an inherent characteristic of blue flour that makes it less valuable.

    This issue matters because in my opinion, informed consumers should be looking to get the best value of their money -- value meaning paying a fair price for the goods the receive. If the market is discounting certain diamonds because of irrelevant factors like marketing, or marking them up as well in the case of IF for example, then I think it is important for consumers to know that these intangibles are out there and know how they affect pricing so we do not get duped into paying for things that do not have a meaningful effect on the diamond''s beauty and optics. I suppose if a buyer values those culturally dictated intangibles, then more power to them. But they should know the facts before they spend their money and know exactly what they are paying for.
     
  26. Isabelle
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    by Isabelle » Jun 21, 2010
    Hi Dreamer! I respect Stone''s knowledge but I have to say that I have read literature from very respected parties that claims strong fluor does negatively affect a diamond''s appearance. So at a minimum, experts disagree on the negative effect of fluor on the diamond''s appearance. Everyone seems to agree that it hurts the diamond''s value in the market. To me, those are red flags. But I''m happy to acknowledge that any given diamond can only really fairly be evaluated with the eyes since John, David and Stone all say these diamonds can be beautiful, again depending on the stone in question.
     
  27. yssie
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    by yssie » Jun 21, 2010
    Can you point us to this literature? What does "negative" mean in this context?


    You are of course welcome to like or dislike fluoro, but objective statements need objective defense, which I for one would be very interested to read
     
  28. Circe
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    by Circe » Jun 21, 2010
    Isabelle, you can find strong blue fluorescence, and occasionally even very strong blue fluorescence: the tough part is finding "overblue," the kind of fluorescence that''s visible to the naked eye under normal lighting conditions. That''s the part that''s really overhyped and used as a scare tactic against consumers: check out the 1997 study from the GIA.
     
  29. Rockdiamond
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    by Rockdiamond » Jun 21, 2010
    We've seen quite a few Medium or Strong Blue diamonds that actually did look blue in sunlight.

    Personally I have loved many high color diamonds with certain types of fluorescence- some of these stones actually look "Blue White" ( a term that's prohibited in advertising under certain circumstances)
    Something that looks great, and trades at a nice discount over inert D-E-F colors...I'm in!

    As far as Isabelle's statement about negative comments about fluorescence- no question such misinformation is out there.
     
  30. Isabelle
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    by Isabelle » Jun 21, 2010
    If you google "strong fluorescence diamond value" I''m sure you''d find quite a lot of literature on it. But I have a source at home I''ll put on here when I return. Tonight or tomorrow. :)
     

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