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Calling Chrono please

bright ice

Ideal_Rock
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I wonder if you might tell me about your experience with Swala Gem Traders when you bought your spinel? I see one on their website that I am interested in getting more info on.

What are your thought on this one?

4.14ct cushion Spinel.jpg
 

chrono

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I purchased it early when Swala just began selling online, which is not to say they haven't been in the trade for many years prior. Eric isn't pushy at all and put up with my numerous emails with patience and answered all of them to my satisfaction. There remained an element of risk then due return shipping not being the easiest thing to Africa. He graciously provided the handshots that I requested, which was very helpful. Since then, however, I have not seen as many highly saturated Mahenge spinels on his website, or ones that tend towards being a pure red, which could probably be attributed to not many high quality stones coming out of the ground these days in comparison to the past. I wish I knew which one you are interested in but I understand your not wanting to tip your hand too early in caution for the fly-by poachers. :cheeky:
 

chrono

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If he's around, then his response time is within the day. If he's out, then it could take a few days. I would ask for handshots on that stone. Do you have a link? I'm trying to asses the general symmetry and cut of the stone. It looks to have potential cut issues so it's something you'll have to confirm with Eric. It also shows a rather unexpected modifier so it'll be good to read how Swala describes the spinel.
 

T L

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I'm not Chrono, but as I always warn when buying these Mahenge spinels, one should ask the vendor if they go more orange in various lighting. If they go substantially more orange, than I would be leary. I would also ask if it has strong UV fluor. Some, I have found out recently, have weak UV fluor, that you can only eeek out with a strong UV light source. That color, if the photo is accurate, seems to have a strong purple component to it, and I prefer pinkish reds, although as Chrono has mentioned, they are getting very rare.
 

bright ice

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I do have the link to his website and have sent an e-mail via the site. Do you have a different one?
 

chrono

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bright ice

Ideal_Rock
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TL|1305914779|2926675 said:
I'm not Chrono, but as I always warn when buying these Mahenge spinels, one should ask the vendor if they go more orange in various lighting. If they go substantially more orange, than I would be leary. I would also ask if it has strong UV fluor. Some, I have found out recently, have weak UV fluor, that you can only eeek out with a strong UV light source.

Thanks TL, your recommendations are welcomed as well.

I did recieve the 2.8 red pear today. It is a beautiful stone, I think it is a flame spinel. Just looking around. I will be posting photos over the weekend, at work now.
 

T L

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bright ice|1305915008|2926680 said:
TL|1305914779|2926675 said:
I'm not Chrono, but as I always warn when buying these Mahenge spinels, one should ask the vendor if they go more orange in various lighting. If they go substantially more orange, than I would be leary. I would also ask if it has strong UV fluor. Some, I have found out recently, have weak UV fluor, that you can only eeek out with a strong UV light source.

Thanks TL, your recommendations are welcomed as well.

I did recieve the 2.8 red pear today. It is a beautiful stone, I think it is a flame spinel. Just looking around. I will be posting photos over the weekend, at work now.
Is it orangey red? Just curious. Were his photos accurate? How sleepy is it?
 

bright ice

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TL|1305915238|2926686 said:
bright ice|1305915008|2926680 said:
TL|1305914779|2926675 said:
I'm not Chrono, but as I always warn when buying these Mahenge spinels, one should ask the vendor if they go more orange in various lighting. If they go substantially more orange, than I would be leary. I would also ask if it has strong UV fluor. Some, I have found out recently, have weak UV fluor, that you can only eeek out with a strong UV light source.

Thanks TL, your recommendations are welcomed as well.

I did recieve the 2.8 red pear today. It is a beautiful stone, I think it is a flame spinel. Just looking around. I will be posting photos over the weekend, at work now.
Is it orangey red? Just curious. Were his photos accurate? How sleepy is it?
Yes, it is an orangy red, not really sleepy. Very sparkly. Photos are pretty spot on.
 

T L

Super_Ideal_Rock
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bright ice|1305915650|2926691 said:
TL|1305915238|2926686 said:
bright ice|1305915008|2926680 said:
TL|1305914779|2926675 said:
I'm not Chrono, but as I always warn when buying these Mahenge spinels, one should ask the vendor if they go more orange in various lighting. If they go substantially more orange, than I would be leary. I would also ask if it has strong UV fluor. Some, I have found out recently, have weak UV fluor, that you can only eeek out with a strong UV light source.

Thanks TL, your recommendations are welcomed as well.

I did recieve the 2.8 red pear today. It is a beautiful stone, I think it is a flame spinel. Just looking around. I will be posting photos over the weekend, at work now.
Is it orangey red? Just curious. Were his photos accurate? How sleepy is it?
Yes, it is an orangy red, not really sleepy. Very sparkly. Photos are pretty spot on.
BrightIce,
I haven't seen the photos yet, but if it's like the color in the photos, I would send it back. You haven't had much experience with Mahenges, and he did advertise it as red red, so in that case, I would send it back. In all honesty, I own a 2 carat pear a very similar color to that, and I paid around $600. Although it was a while ago, I think you can do much much better for your money spent on that. I'm sorry to side track this, but I feel the need to be truthful since you're still in the decision stage, and it was a very expensive stone. The cutting premium should not be that high either.

ETA: Here is the Mahenge I was talking about, although it does go more red outdoors since it has strong fluor.

https://www.pricescope.com/communit...t-some-red-and-green-spinel-tsavorite.133757/

I am planning on resetting it as the orange in the stone doesn't go well with white metal that it is in now. I paid $600 for this. Does it look similar to your stone?
 

chrono

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Is it orangey red outdoors? How about indoors? Does it get more orange, brown out or remain pretty much unchanged under fluorescent lighting?
 

bright ice

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TL|1305915858|2926696 said:
bright ice|1305915650|2926691 said:
TL|1305915238|2926686 said:
bright ice|1305915008|2926680 said:
TL|1305914779|2926675 said:
I'm not Chrono, but as I always warn when buying these Mahenge spinels, one should ask the vendor if they go more orange in various lighting. If they go substantially more orange, than I would be leary. I would also ask if it has strong UV fluor. Some, I have found out recently, have weak UV fluor, that you can only eeek out with a strong UV light source.

Thanks TL, your recommendations are welcomed as well.

I did recieve the 2.8 red pear today. It is a beautiful stone, I think it is a flame spinel. Just looking around. I will be posting photos over the weekend, at work now.
Is it orangey red? Just curious. Were his photos accurate? How sleepy is it?
Yes, it is an orangy red, not really sleepy. Very sparkly. Photos are pretty spot on.
BrightIce,
I haven't seen the photos yet, but if it's like the color in the photos, I would send it back. You haven't had much experience with Mahenges, and he did advertise it as red red, so in that case, I would send it back. In all honesty, I own a 2 carat pear a very similar color to that, and I paid around $600. Although it was a while ago, I think you can do much much better for your money spent on that. I'm sorry to side track this, but I feel the need to be truthful since you're still in the decision stage, and it was a very expensive stone. The cutting premium should not be that high either.
I am already thinking that it will go back. I am not even going to send it to AGL, just not worth the time and more funds. I don't mind spending the bucks but I want my money's worth :nono:
 

chrono

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If it's of any help, these is Swala's picture of my spinel. Swala's photography has improved by leaps and bounds the last few years to the point where I feel that hand shots have become a requirement.
5ctpearmahenge.jpg

ETA
I'll post Swala's handshot of the spinel in a bit. If you compare the two, the spinel you listed looks distinctively purplish.

ETA2
The oval posted looks to be cut better and the colour truer to a hot pink. Just to cover all bases, what is the colour description and measurements listed? If interested, request for a handshot picture.
 

bright ice

Ideal_Rock
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Chrono|1305915887|2926698 said:
Is it orangey red outdoors? How about indoors? Does it get more orange, brown out or remain pretty much unchanged under fluorescent lighting?
It goes a little more orangey outdoors, maybe a little brighter outdoors too. As far as flourescence goes, I am not sure.
 

T L

Super_Ideal_Rock
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bright ice|1305916249|2926713 said:
Chrono|1305915887|2926698 said:
Is it orangey red outdoors? How about indoors? Does it get more orange, brown out or remain pretty much unchanged under fluorescent lighting?
It goes a little more orangey outdoors, maybe a little brighter outdoors too. As far as flourescence goes, I am not sure.
Oh no!! It should go more red outdoors if there is sunlight. It probably has weak fluor than, not good! If purchasing Mahenges, I highly advise you to buy a UV light. They're for sale on ebay rather cheap.

ETA:
You know, when I first started buying Mahenges, I had a little keylight UV light, very weak, but I was still able to eek out a lot of fluorescence with it, and even with just pure sunlight, you can easily see fluor on a fine Mahenge. I then bought a Mahenge that I couldn't get any fluor on with my keychain UV light. It really did nothing in the sun. It was returned and someone else bought it and flashed a very strong UV light on it, and then it had fluor. Therefore, you should test not just for fluor, but for strong fluor. The Mahenge I returned had the appearance of a rhodolite garnet, and these stones should NOT EVER look like garnets, pyrope, rhodolite, or otherwise. In fact the top spinel you posted kind of reminds me of a rhodolite, but as you know, these stones are not rhodolite prices. If they were, I wouldn't be so nitpicky.
 

chrono

Super_Ideal_Rock
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Here's is the cropped hand shot of somebody's hand from Swala.
chronomahengehand2.jpg
 

T L

Super_Ideal_Rock
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One thing that should be noted is that the oval is photographed against a dark background, and the cushion against a white background. The dark background can enhance the saturation and pink. I would want to see it against a white background so that it can be similarly compared to the cushion.
 

bright ice

Ideal_Rock
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I really see the purple in the cushion now that it's mentioned. The oval looks more like yours does Chrono.
 

chrono

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Request a hand shot of the oval, if you like. I have observed that Swala's photography these days to show a less saturated stone when photographed on the hand.
 

LD

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Bright Ice - I am really relieved to hear that you're thinking of sending it back. If you've paid over $1000 then you've paid too much I think (based on the colour etc).

In terms of the photos above, the cushion is VERY purple. The oval is still purple but more leaning towards purplish pink. I love Eric at Swala but, for me, his photos always look very vivid and the stones are much less so in real life.

What colour are you looking for?

Can I make a suggestion? You're looking at very expensive stones but I'm wondering if perhaps you should start with something cheaper to get an idea of what you like? If you look at any of Tan's Ebay stores you'll find some very pretty purplish pink spinels and also some orange ones. For under $1000 and perhaps even under $800 you could buy a very nice one of each.

If you want to compare - dig out Chrono's original photos when she had her pear and she photographed it. Then compare it to the photos from Swala. In Chrono's case (and this was very lucky for her), neither of the photos show as much red as it really has.
 

bright ice

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I am not set on a specific color, in the pink to red tones. Although I do want a good size stone.
 

T L

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bright ice|1305918255|2926760 said:
I am not set on a specific color, in the pink to red tones. Although I do want a good size stone.
Pinkish reds are the most valuable (per Swala who told me that), so for the prices you're spending, you should at least be familiar with what you're paying for. A strong orange or purple component should be avoided.
 

Aoife

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Bright Ice, that is so disappointing that the spinel is orange-y. I've never bought from Doug, and admire his cutting very much, but it would certainly make me doubt the accuracy of his verbal descriptions in the future. I know everyone sees color differently, but stating that a stone is pure red without any modifiers, and then it not being as represented is a Very Big Deal to me.

I bought both a tsavorite and a Mahenge spinel from Swala last year, and found the photographed color of the spinel much more accurate than the tsavorite. The cutting on the spinel was very good, on the tsav good but not great, which was accurate according to the Swala listing. Just be prepared to wait, sometimes for a week or so, if Eric is traveling, every time you ask a question. Also, while I enjoyed dealing with him, sometimes you do have to be persistent in getting answers to all your questions. I hope you don't mind my input, and I know Arcadian has bought several stones from Swala recently, too.
 

LD

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Finding big and with a good colour is going to be a challenge. I've just had a look at 4 or 5 different vendors and there seems to be a very real shortage.

This looks a little sleepy but it's big and a pinkish red with some purple but it was all I could find in a big stone. I would ask about the sleepiness though. It's eye clean so that shouldn't be a problem.

http://www.ajsgem.com/gemstones/spinel/spinel-4.54-carats.html
 

LD

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So you can evaluate AJS photos, here's a stone I bought from them - my photo and the Vendor's photo.

Spinel Mahenge 1.35ct incandescent 3_1_1.JPG

Spinel Mahenge 1.35ct 7.77x4.79x3.80 for ps.jpg
 

FrekeChild

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