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Colored Stone Girdle Thickness for Jeff White Sapphire

csnewbie

Rough_Rock
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Oct 19, 2015
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Hello all,

I am a lurker but finally decided to post. I have been in the process of commissioning a sapphire from Jeff White. I received the stone and took it to my jeweler in order to discuss setting the stone. I was told that the stone is going to be very difficult to set with prongs because the girdle of the sapphire is so thick. In looking at the stone and comparing it to some of the others that I have, it is definitely the thickest. The sapphire is also large and deep, it is 8.5 mm in diameter and 8.5 mm deep. I am wondering if what my jeweler told me is correct and if I should be concerned about the thickness of the sapphire's girdle. I love Jeff's cutting and I doubt that he would cut a stone so that it was unsettable or would be difficult to set but I could be wrong. img_1366.jpg img_1365.jpg
 

csnewbie

Rough_Rock
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Oct 19, 2015
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I also wanted to add that according to my measurements, the girdle is about .10 to .15 of a centimeter thick give or take.
 

dk168

Super_Ideal_Rock
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I am not an expert on cutting, and would trust Jeff W 100% for his judgement and skills to bring out the best in a rough.

The cut looks similar to an Acorn, however, I could be wrong; and here are pics of Acorn cut stones in Doug's Bespokegems site, with stones that have girdles in similar thickness:
http://bespoke-gems.com/SacredGeometrics_Gemstones_Designs_Rounds_Acorn.php

DK :))
 

ElleK

Shiny_Rock
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Stones with thick girdles can be more difficult to set, but it really depends on the skill of the jeweler setting them. I would advise having someone who is comfortable setting colored stones (because not all jewelers are! Some only really set diamonds.) set a stone like that.

If Jeff had cut the girdle thinner, it probably would have reduced the weight, potentially lost some saturation and probably would not have made a difference performance-wise.
 

csnewbie

Rough_Rock
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Oct 19, 2015
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Thank you ElleW and DK, I greatly appreciate your advice.

ElleW, I became so nervous because my jeweler said that it would be impossible to set. I was under the impression that a setting could be made with longer than normal prongs in order to accommodate the stone properly. Do you think that this still possible with this stone?
 

Lady_Disdain

Ideal_Rock
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That stone will be tough to set - not only is the girdle thick but it also has a steep angle on the pavilion.

The problem is not the length of the prong but the notch in the prong where the stone sits. To accommodate the girdle, first a larger notch will be needed, which might weaken a thin prong. The notch would also have to be perfectly carved to fit the contour. Get a skilled setter to handle this.
 

ElleK

Shiny_Rock
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I think it would still be possible to prong set, just more difficult, and take a bit more finesse. The prongs could be made longer, and a seat could be cut for the girdle into the prongs, it'll just take a bit more care to do it properly.

Do you already have a setting picked out for the stone? If it's a stock piece, I would probably recommend that you work from scratch and do a custom setting, rather than trying to make an existing setting work for this particular stone.

It will need a deep basket and careful prong work, but I still think it can be done.


ETA: Lady D is so wise.
 

csnewbie

Rough_Rock
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Oct 19, 2015
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I was hoping to have the stone set into a pendant because I think that it would sit much too high up on my finger for a ring for me to be comfortable with. I am super worried now that I have a stone that can never be set :( It was a very large purchase and I really love everything else about the stone.
 

Lady_Disdain

Ideal_Rock
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I think it will be great as a pendant and, yes, it can be set. It will probably need a custom basket (because of the depth and angle) and a good setter. There are some really great custom jewelers that PSers use - check the threads for names.

Some precision cut stones are unusual shapes that require custom pieces.
 

chrono

Super_Ideal_Rock
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I do not see this stone fitting into a standard mount due to both the depth and girdle; it will require a custom mount.
 

LD

Super_Ideal_Rock
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With a thick girdle that would make a great tension set!
 

Niel

Super_Ideal_Rock
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csnewbie|1445299577|3940044 said:
Thank you ElleW and DK, I greatly appreciate your advice.

ElleW, I became so nervous because my jeweler said that it would be impossible to set. I was under the impression that a setting could be made with longer than normal prongs in order to accommodate the stone properly. Do you think that this still possible with this stone?


I definitely would use that jeweler then. I would contact some other jeweler's and se what they say. Like others have said, it probably just needs a jeweler that's comfortable with colored stones.
 

Lady_Disdain

Ideal_Rock
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Niel|1445427006|3940572 said:
csnewbie|1445299577|3940044 said:
Thank you ElleW and DK, I greatly appreciate your advice.

ElleW, I became so nervous because my jeweler said that it would be impossible to set. I was under the impression that a setting could be made with longer than normal prongs in order to accommodate the stone properly. Do you think that this still possible with this stone?


I definitely would use that jeweler then. I would contact some other jeweler's and se what they say. Like others have said, it probably just needs a jeweler that's comfortable with colored stones.

I think you meant "definitely NOT use that jeweler" and missed a word ;)) Yeah, if someone says they can't do it, take them at their word.
 

mastercutgems

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Well since no cutters have chimed in yet and you all know me I do love a debate ;-) LOL

It is a tough decision when you are at the wheel trying to decide what route to go; thick, thin, and perfect !!!

I have cut and set stones for over 20 years and if I had a choice I would prefer perfect but the second choice would be thick as thin many times is just asking for problems for the setter or the wearer of the gem. There also is the debate over a faceted girdle which is lovely in a stand alone gem but also can cause issues when setting as anytime you have a sharp edge on a girdle you do run a risk especially setting 10 or 14K white gold with nickel and/or a metal that has memory and fights the pliers on the setting of the prong. Smooth girdles like the one pictured to me are the best for the setter and the one wearing the gem as it lends itself to be less likely to chip from a glancing blow they sometimes will take without the wearer even knowing it has happened.

Also one must consider IF there was a flaw at the girdle that really did not show up until the crown was cut and therefore made the cutter take sometimes drastic measures. I for one think all setters should cut a few gems and all cutters should set a few gems to better qualify them to help both crafts and the wearer themselves.

I will not make any statement on the geometry of the gem as it is forbidden for us in the trade to comment on another's gem; but I do think most setters will admit they had rather set a gem with a girdle on the little thicker side than try to set a razor blade girdle that will chip at the slightest glance of the setting pliers.

Many times the cutter will ask what you intend on setting the gem in as it will help them to know what it is being set in and used for so they can accommodate the angles to better fit the mount the wearer has intentions for.

Saving weight is always a good thing but in this case the weight would have been so miniscule. I think it is one sturdy stone that should wear well and be one tough hombre :)

Just an ole cutters 2 cents :)

Most Respectfully;

Dana Reynolds
ASG Certified
Supreme Master Gem Cutter
#96CGE42
 

Michael_E

Brilliant_Rock
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Chrono|1445347987|3940202 said:
I do not see this stone fitting into a standard mount due to both the depth and girdle; it will require a custom mount.

This is exactly correct. With a custom setting you can make the prong thickness whatever is needed to fit the stone securely. The problem with thick girdles and steep pavilions is that the length of the stone seat is so long that it reduces the strength of the prong dramatically. If you're custom making the setting, you can make the prong thicker so that it retains adequate strength to hold the stone. If you're bezel setting it, then it doesn't matter since the interior of the bezel can be carved to fit and you only need a thin rim above the stone to hold it in place, (though a stock bezel would probably not have enough depth to grab a really wide girdle). That's a big, fine sapphire and so having at least the part holding the stone be custom made for the stone is not a big deal. In fact with the rise of low cost 3D printers it's become very easy to make parts to fit at a relatively low cost, (meaning if you have a setting, your jeweler has a setting you like or you like a commercially available setting, it is very easy to cut out the existing head and replace it with a new, custom made head which is more appropriate for a stone like this). Make sure to post pictures of the finished piece!
 
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