Buying Advice

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Dec 19, 2002
Ok - I've made my purchase and now am on to the setting and proposal phase. This site and the participants were really helpful, and I wanted to thank you all for your insights.

I'll sign off with a couple of things I wish I'd known or been able to find more easily, however, and let you all digest.

1. There are quite a few tools out there (HCA/Brilliancescope/grading companies/appraisers/pricing tools) that are pretty new to anyone who isn't in the business. A quick summary of what each is trying to do and which are most reliable would be helpful. If, for example, I'm buying the stone as an investment, which of the above should be of most concern to me? If I just want her to have a big and shiny symbol of my affection, then what should I care about or weigh more heavily?

2. Assuming everyone who buys a stone also cares about the price they pay, some help as to which vendors sell for the least and how to access this would have been useful. I stumbled around on this one and eventually ended up buying from what I considered to be (based on just some anecdotal evidence) a fairly cheap supplier. However, when I got the stone, I did some more analysis and found the exact same stone listed at a number of web sites. I not only did not know that this was a worthwhile analysis, I didn't even know that more than one vendor had access to the same stone. (the stone I bought ranged from $9700 to $10800 - I paid about $10,000). So, I ended up on the cheaper end, but could have gotten it for at least a couple hundred bucks cheaper. Here's the link I used. You'll note that many times the same stone is listed multiple times.

That said, I'm happy with the big and shiny I bought and I'm sure she will be. Nothing personal, but I do hope that this is the last engagement ring I'll ever buy!



Dec 24, 2002
My best buying advice I can provide is shop around and be patient. As you aware retailer often have 100% markups for Diamonds and it pays to shop around.

Also try to 'buy shy' which means instead of going 1.0ct 100 pointer go for a .9ct or 1.49 ct instead of 1.5. There is significant price jump in going from .99- 1.0ct.

Richard Sherwood

Sep 25, 2002
Mongol, the days of 100% markup on diamond solitaires are dead and buried. Even the mall stores are not operating at that high a markup anymore.

Rich, GG
Sarasota Gemological Laboratory
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