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defining value for center spinel stone

FallenRox

Shiny_Rock
Joined
May 1, 2011
Messages
248
I'm in the design process of my ering and have a couple options in getting my center stone set.

I'm working with Green Lake Jewelry Works and they have a stone loss guarantee replacement program should I lose my center stone or any of the diamonds they set. I guess they determine the cost of setting the center stone by the value of it. I would assume, the more expensive, the more it is to set.

My local jeweler said he'd set the stone for $200.00. But we didn't talk about a loss/replacement possibility.

Dumb question- how do I figure out the value of my center stone since I bought my stone from one vendor and then had it cut by someone else? Just not sure how to go about this. Advice?

Thank you!
 

FrekeChild

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Dec 14, 2007
Messages
19,456
Wait, let me get this straight, he will only SET the stone for $200? There is no actual mounting in that price?

How much did you pay for your stone?
 

jstarfireb

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Mar 24, 2007
Messages
6,232
I agree; that's excessive for a stone setting fee. Daniel M on Etsy charges $25. My local guy charges anywhere between $20 and $50 depending on how hard the job is. My old local guy in Philly charged $15.

As for the value, I'd probably add a little bit to the pre-recut price you paid, not the entire recut fee but maybe 1/3 to 1/2 of it? Just my opinion though, with nothing to back it up.
 

NKOTB

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Jun 5, 2011
Messages
2,025
I would calculate what it would cost to find a stone that would replace it if they damage it during setting - whether that is the total cost that you paid, or the cost of something comparable. Unless you think the risk of damage is minimal and you wouldn't mind if the replacement stone was a little cheaper. It's like figuring out what you want your deductible to be vs. your insurance premium.
 

FallenRox

Shiny_Rock
Joined
May 1, 2011
Messages
248
FrekeChild|1311568634|2976143 said:
Wait, let me get this straight, he will only SET the stone for $200? There is no actual mounting in that price?

How much did you pay for your stone?
No, it wasn't just to set the stone, it was when I was considering him as an option for a ring design and had that left in my notes now that I think about it.

In total, the stone was @ $400.00 but I definitely couldn't replace it for that. I got very very lucky.
 

FallenRox

Shiny_Rock
Joined
May 1, 2011
Messages
248
jstarfireb|1311570757|2976160 said:
I agree; that's excessive for a stone setting fee. Daniel M on Etsy charges $25. My local guy charges anywhere between $20 and $50 depending on how hard the job is. My old local guy in Philly charged $15.

As for the value, I'd probably add a little bit to the pre-recut price you paid, not the entire recut fee but maybe 1/3 to 1/2 of it? Just my opinion though, with nothing to back it up.
Thanks for the insight :)
 

FallenRox

Shiny_Rock
Joined
May 1, 2011
Messages
248
NKOTB|1311603304|2976318 said:
I would calculate what it would cost to find a stone that would replace it if they damage it during setting - whether that is the total cost that you paid, or the cost of something comparable. Unless you think the risk of damage is minimal and you wouldn't mind if the replacement stone was a little cheaper. It's like figuring out what you want your deductible to be vs. your insurance premium.
That seems reasonable. I feel like I got such an amazing deal on the stone that I didn't want to sell myself short on it should something happen to it. The colors I like, while not super popular, are not easy to find in the 7 carat-ish range and I've never seen one already cut in the size I have so have been thinking of that too.

Thanks for the analogy... that helps a lot :)
 

T L

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Sep 20, 2008
Messages
23,284
FallenRox|1311605718|2976332 said:
FrekeChild|1311568634|2976143 said:
Wait, let me get this straight, he will only SET the stone for $200? There is no actual mounting in that price?

How much did you pay for your stone?
No, it wasn't just to set the stone, it was when I was considering him as an option for a ring design and had that left in my notes now that I think about it.

In total, the stone was @ $400.00 but I definitely couldn't replace it for that. I got very very lucky.
Consider retail four times what you paid for it. I would say $1600. However, do they need an appraiser to give a value?
 

FallenRox

Shiny_Rock
Joined
May 1, 2011
Messages
248
TL|1311618116|2976431 said:
FallenRox|1311605718|2976332 said:
FrekeChild|1311568634|2976143 said:
Wait, let me get this straight, he will only SET the stone for $200? There is no actual mounting in that price?

How much did you pay for your stone?
No, it wasn't just to set the stone, it was when I was considering him as an option for a ring design and had that left in my notes now that I think about it.

In total, the stone was @ $400.00 but I definitely couldn't replace it for that. I got very very lucky.
Consider retail four times what you paid for it. I would say $1600. However, do they need an appraiser to give a value?
Thanks TL :)

No, no need for an appraisal just a value to assess the setting and loss/replacement cost.
Appreciate the help very much!
 

FallenRox

Shiny_Rock
Joined
May 1, 2011
Messages
248
Still stuck on what to do here.

I really feel like the price for Green Lake to set my main stone is just to freakin' high. The down side is that when my ring is done, it's not done because the stone wouldn't be set. I just don't want to pay what they're asking to set it. I also feel like they know my ring since they are making it, and it feels weird to have them mail it to me just to take it to a local jeweler whom I don't know very well and have them set it. Is that weird?

Also, I can't see myself having Green Lake send my ring to me and then ship the ring and the stone off to someone else unless they came highly recommended by someone I trust.

Ugh. Never saw this one coming.....
 

natsplat

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
May 1, 2011
Messages
509
I'm not sure what to advise, but I do kind of identify: I had originally planned to take my stone and setting to a UK jeweller to set, as both componant parts are coming from the US, but I then thought - like you - that I would prefer DanielM to set it as he knows my ring inside out, and I don't have a relationship with a UK bench yet. It did cost me to send it to the US insured (and of course it was at risk of loss too), but not of course as much money as your setting fee appears to be: plus Dan isn't charging to set the stone. I can understand your wish to keep it all in the same place though.

Maybe, as you got your centre spinel for such a great deal, you can rationalise the extra spend by thinking it's part of the centre gem's price? - that would only bring it up to a "normal" price for such a great spinel, and then you know it's being set by the people who will do the best job on it?

Good luck with it all. I know the pressure one puts oneself under to make it perfect, and it will be perfect :love:

ETA: have you negotiated with them at all on this price btw?
 

TristanC

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Jun 6, 2011
Messages
995
I would just advise you to go with whoever is making the ring. Everything is insured, and it is all in one place. Put in perspective, whatever you SAVE you must deduct shipping, insurance on shipping, return shipping, uncertainty premium, a possibility of setting and or stone damage with unclear liabilities, and the potential to botch the job.

Perhaps ask for a slight discount and go for it? If you got a great deal on the stone this setting cost might seem more acceptable taken as a whole.

I'm not for paying unnecessary premiums but unless you have a cost effective jeweler in your locale... It would be prudent to pay more as insurance for work done. At least that's what I would do.
 

petit_bijou

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Jun 22, 2011
Messages
234
Maybe you could request that Green Lake compromise on their setting fee a little bit, and provide them with some estimates from local jewelers (so that they can better see your perspective). Even though it's a higher price, I think the benefits of having GL set the stone outweigh any savings you might get from going local. Personally, I would feel more comfortable knowing that the people I had trusted to make my ring completed the process of setting the stone. Considering it's something you'll be wearing so frequently, I wouldn't want to have any uncertainties at the back of my mind every day about the quality of the work, especially if GL is willing to guarantee the centre stone which speaks to their confidence in their workmanship.
 

FallenRox

Shiny_Rock
Joined
May 1, 2011
Messages
248
natsplat|1311929336|2979626 said:
I'm not sure what to advise, but I do kind of identify: I had originally planned to take my stone and setting to a UK jeweller to set, as both componant parts are coming from the US, but I then thought - like you - that I would prefer DanielM to set it as he knows my ring inside out, and I don't have a relationship with a UK bench yet. It did cost me to send it to the US insured (and of course it was at risk of loss too), but not of course as much money as your setting fee appears to be: plus Dan isn't charging to set the stone. I can understand your wish to keep it all in the same place though.

Maybe, as you got your centre spinel for such a great deal, you can rationalise the extra spend by thinking it's part of the centre gem's price? - that would only bring it up to a "normal" price for such a great spinel, and then you know it's being set by the people who will do the best job on it?

Good luck with it all. I know the pressure one puts oneself under to make it perfect, and it will be perfect :love:

ETA: have you negotiated with them at all on this price btw?
I'm trying to rationalize it but even at $600.00? That's what Green Lake wants to charge. I'm wondering if anyone has ever heard of a setting cost that high? Honestly, I get the feeling they are a bit intimidated by spinel as odd as that sounds. What I was told is that the stone is so rare in color and having had it precision cut, there really is no replacing it like a certain grade/cut/color etc. of a diamond. I just never expected that, and apparently the size of the stone has something to do with it too.

I know I feel best having them set it. Biting the $600.00 bullet wasn't in the plan, that's what I have to get over. I did talk to them about my local jewelers prices and even the pricing from the others who have commented on this thread but it doesn't seem to make a difference in terms of negotiating.

One thing though- I'm still in phase one in dealing with the sketch artist and am moving on to the wax artist in the next day or two. Maybe I'll just approach it again one last time and see what happens.

Thanks for your thoughts :)
 

FallenRox

Shiny_Rock
Joined
May 1, 2011
Messages
248
TristanC|1311942736|2979675 said:
I would just advise you to go with whoever is making the ring. Everything is insured, and it is all in one place. Put in perspective, whatever you SAVE you must deduct shipping, insurance on shipping, return shipping, uncertainty premium, a possibility of setting and or stone damage with unclear liabilities, and the potential to botch the job.

Perhaps ask for a slight discount and go for it? If you got a great deal on the stone this setting cost might seem more acceptable taken as a whole.

I'm not for paying unnecessary premiums but unless you have a cost effective jeweler in your locale... It would be prudent to pay more as insurance for work done. At least that's what I would do.
Yep. I'm going to see if they'll come down a little bit but you're right, when I get the ring I'd like it to be complete and can at least say that I learned a ton about making sure to ask those questions up front.

I'm not locked in to having them do the ring, but 3 sketches later, and being very happy with the design, I'm sticking with it.

Thank you kindly for input :)

You too, Petit!
 

petit_bijou

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Jun 22, 2011
Messages
234
Holy cow! :-o $600 does seem a little bit insane JUST for setting the stone... I thought we were still talking about $200. Yuck!
 

NKOTB

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Jun 5, 2011
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2,025
The local jeweler who would charge 200 dollars...Was this person recommended, or do you trust him/her? Do they work with coloured stones, or primarily with diamonds? Could you go back and ask about whether or not the stone would be insured for that price in terms of replacement value? If the answer is yes, then I might reconsider that option, since 400 bucks is a lot of money. The trick is to make sure the stone will fit, too, including depth. When I first got my ring done by GLJW, I had an inexpensive garnet put in until I could save some money for an upgrade. Then I bought a red spinel from Peter Torraca. I was so focused on the width, I didn't pay any attention to the depth of the stone. When I took the components to my jeweler, the stone wouldn't fit with the ring as it was. He had to drill a hole in the ring to make the stone fit (you can't tell). Also, I had to consider the metal - because it was Stuller X-1, which my jeweler doesn't normally work with, I was worried that if a prong broke or anything (more an issue with resetting, not initially setting, I imagine), then fixing it would be a problem. GLJW wanted 200-300 to set the stone, so I agonized over whether or not to send it back to the US (I'm in Canada), have it cross the border twice, pay for shipping and insurance, etc., or cheap out and go local with some risk (though my jeweler comes highly recommended by coworkers, and had done good work for me in the past). It worked out okay, though (and all for 100 dollars, but my jeweler doesn't insure stones, so I just had to keep my fingers crossed - but my stone didn't cost as much as yours, I'm sure).
 

FallenRox

Shiny_Rock
Joined
May 1, 2011
Messages
248
petit_bijou|1311960491|2979878 said:
Holy cow! :-o $600 does seem a little bit insane JUST for setting the stone... I thought we were still talking about $200. Yuck!
Yeah... it's $600.00 - I'm a bit sick over it.
 

FallenRox

Shiny_Rock
Joined
May 1, 2011
Messages
248
NKOTB|1311962177|2979904 said:
The local jeweler who would charge 200 dollars...Was this person recommended, or do you trust him/her? Do they work with coloured stones, or primarily with diamonds? Could you go back and ask about whether or not the stone would be insured for that price in terms of replacement value? If the answer is yes, then I might reconsider that option, since 400 bucks is a lot of money. The trick is to make sure the stone will fit, too, including depth. When I first got my ring done by GLJW, I had an inexpensive garnet put in until I could save some money for an upgrade. Then I bought a red spinel from Peter Torraca. I was so focused on the width, I didn't pay any attention to the depth of the stone. When I took the components to my jeweler, the stone wouldn't fit with the ring as it was. He had to drill a hole in the ring to make the stone fit (you can't tell). Also, I had to consider the metal - because it was Stuller X-1, which my jeweler doesn't normally work with, I was worried that if a prong broke or anything (more an issue with resetting, not initially setting, I imagine), then fixing it would be a problem. GLJW wanted 200-300 to set the stone, so I agonized over whether or not to send it back to the US (I'm in Canada), have it cross the border twice, pay for shipping and insurance, etc., or cheap out and go local with some risk (though my jeweler comes highly recommended by coworkers, and had done good work for me in the past). It worked out okay, though (and all for 100 dollars, but my jeweler doesn't insure stones, so I just had to keep my fingers crossed - but my stone didn't cost as much as yours, I'm sure).
The local jeweler has done some work for my mom. I'm going to talk to her more about him but I'm positive that no one around here is super familiar at all with spinel. I did see some color stones in his shop though- birthstones basically.

Great point about the depth of the stone. I need to make sure I talk to them about that, thanks for bringing it up and reminding me. They also mentioned that their gemologist (well, one there that they spoke to) suggested not going with the 14K white gold because it has some "spring" to it... and suggested palladium or platinum. That's fine, I really do love the tone of palladium but it was the first time I'd heard that. Maybe it's the design that is dictating that? Hell, I dunno. I'll feel better when I can actually ask more questions later today.

And that's the thing- I got a steal on my stone. It was a very imperfect nearly 8 carat (if I remember correctly) stone that I had recut. I ended up getting the stone for less than $200.00. It's the cut that Jerry with Gemart did for me that makes it so delightful and apparently intimidating to some jewelers because it's "not common" - who knew?
 

TristanC

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Jun 6, 2011
Messages
995
FallenRox|1311963409|2979927 said:
petit_bijou|1311960491|2979878 said:
Holy cow! :-o $600 does seem a little bit insane JUST for setting the stone... I thought we were still talking about $200. Yuck!
Yeah... it's $600.00 - I'm a bit sick over it.
Ok now that you posted the price, it is time for a different tack.

Key question: You HAVE the stone, are you happy paying $600+$XXX =$XXXX for the total ring setting?

If you aren't, then shop elsewhere.

You know the visual design that you love, getting it right somewhere else would be possible and easier. I just don't see how $600 sounds like it makes sense just for the setting given the overall cost of your project.

I'm so sorry it is so hard - sometimes you need to decide the best way forward. All my best.
 

FallenRox

Shiny_Rock
Joined
May 1, 2011
Messages
248
TristanC|1311964101|2979940 said:
FallenRox|1311963409|2979927 said:
petit_bijou|1311960491|2979878 said:
Holy cow! :-o $600 does seem a little bit insane JUST for setting the stone... I thought we were still talking about $200. Yuck!
Yeah... it's $600.00 - I'm a bit sick over it.
Ok now that you posted the price, it is time for a different tack.

Key question: You HAVE the stone, are you happy paying $600+$XXX =$XXXX for the total ring setting?

If you aren't, then shop elsewhere.

You know the visual design that you love, getting it right somewhere else would be possible and easier. I just don't see how $600 sounds like it makes sense just for the setting given the overall cost of your project.

I'm so sorry it is so hard - sometimes you need to decide the best way forward. All my best.
Yes, I have the stone- haven't sent it out. And no- I'm not happy with paying $600 to set the center stone but am thrilled with what I've spent so far and what I have design wise. (my fiance ended up designing the sides of the ring actually)

I guess I need to just get familiar with local jewelers because I already have another project in mind. le' sigh. Here is where I wish I could just do it all myself. lol And if ANYONE knows a great jeweler in Cincinnati or Northern Kentucky- let me know. :)

Thanks TristanC for the kindness. <3
 

NKOTB

Ideal_Rock
Premium
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Messages
2,025
Will GLJW set the stone without insurance, and if so, what would that cost? I don't know what the experience has been of others, but my jeweler said that most won't insure stones brought in by the customer. So, if you're local person won't and it would still be 200 dollars, but GLJW will do it without insurance for considerably less than 600, then maybe that's the way to go? I guess my point is if sending it to another jeweler, local or otherwise, is cheaper but there is no insurance, then you still have the risk factor of something happening to the stone, but with someone who did not craft the ring. Also, if you pay the 600, how much is the replacement value for that, and are you confident you'll be able to find something comparable for that amount?
 

FrekeChild

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Dec 14, 2007
Messages
19,456
That price is ABSURD.

I am wondering if this is a tactic to make you seek setting it elsewhere so that they don't have to take the risk or deal with it if it somehow gets damaged. From what you said, it sounds like they are unsure about spinel as a whole and don't want to risk it.

The most I have ever paid to have something set (spinel too btw) was $100 in a platinum Beverly K halo setting. This is a local place to me, and they have never hurt any stone or setting with anything I've had them set.

The least? Free. When Daniel M makes a setting, he makes it custom to the stone and for him part of the process of making the setting is setting the stone. So the cost of setting a stone is built into the cost of fabricating the ring.

I just cannot fathom paying that much to set a stone. Not only that, but I cannot fathom CHARGING that much to do it either! That's highway robbery!

I have heard that when Leon deals with people he doesn't like (Leon Mege) he quotes them prices that are much higher than other people's. Usually those people are the more "controlling" and don't let him be the "artiste", and he figures if they want to pay the astronomical prices he's quoting, he'll put up with them. If they don't want to pay that price, they don't really want a Leon Mege piece and he doesn't care about the lost business.

I'm guessing you'd probably prefer to pay someone less money who is more experienced at setting spinels, eh?

Do you have pictures of this stone somewhere?
 

pregcurious

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Mar 18, 2009
Messages
6,724
$600 seems too high. I would bring my business elsewhere. How likely is that you can find another designer who can make your ring?
 

FallenRox

Shiny_Rock
Joined
May 1, 2011
Messages
248
NKOTB|1311971858|2980062 said:
Will GLJW set the stone without insurance, and if so, what would that cost? I don't know what the experience has been of others, but my jeweler said that most won't insure stones brought in by the customer. So, if you're local person won't and it would still be 200 dollars, but GLJW will do it without insurance for considerably less than 600, then maybe that's the way to go? I guess my point is if sending it to another jeweler, local or otherwise, is cheaper but there is no insurance, then you still have the risk factor of something happening to the stone, but with someone who did not craft the ring. Also, if you pay the 600, how much is the replacement value for that, and are you confident you'll be able to find something comparable for that amount?
The latest final answer is....

"I know the $600 is high but we usually charge about $288 for our setting which I usually work into the estimate. So actually you will only be paying $312 extra. Lot better right? "


And no, it's still not better. And I spent some time with a jeweler yesterday that I'm going to take this project to. Granted, he isn't an artist- but my fiance and I are, so we'll just have to continue from here with it and make it work :)

This local jeweler has done work for my mom and his work is good, and artistic or not, he does guarantee his work, so that's good too. I just want everything under one roof- it doesn't feel right otherwise. Could just be me...
 

FallenRox

Shiny_Rock
Joined
May 1, 2011
Messages
248
FrekeChild|1311972693|2980070 said:
That price is ABSURD.

I am wondering if this is a tactic to make you seek setting it elsewhere so that they don't have to take the risk or deal with it if it somehow gets damaged. From what you said, it sounds like they are unsure about spinel as a whole and don't want to risk it.

I'm guessing you'd probably prefer to pay someone less money who is more experienced at setting spinels, eh?

Do you have pictures of this stone somewhere?
I'm thinking something along those lines, yes. And I understand that you can't ever get the rough back to recreate the stone.... and I think they don't want to risk it, yes.

YES- exactly- and after my visit to another jeweler I was considering, I'm heading that direction now. He's not afraid of colored stones and while he's not had a ton of experience with spinels, he is excited about working with the stone and that makes me excited too. Plus he really loved my fiance's design, so who knows- maybe they'll work together on other projects. I know I have others I want to do. Sooner than later!

There is a thread somewhere on my stone, but here's a couple I grabbed from my folder....

Asscher Spinel- 010.jpg

Grace.JPG
 

natsplat

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
May 1, 2011
Messages
509
oh! $600???!?!?! I thought it was $200! My goodness, that cannot be rationalised, even if you tried with both hands! It must be a "not happy with spinels" tax of sorts. I think yes, go to your jeweller you mention. Blimey! - no wonder you were in a tizzy about it! :errrr:
 

Indylady

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Apr 28, 2008
Messages
5,586
FrekeChild|1311972693|2980070 said:
That price is ABSURD.


The least? Free. When Daniel M makes a setting, he makes it custom to the stone and for him part of the process of making the setting is setting the stone. So the cost of setting a stone is built into the cost of fabricating the ring.

That's what I imagine when I think of most custom settings--its a little odd, to me that they'd design a custom setting for you without intending to set the stone as well (at least it seems like that since they're assuming they'll set the stone for you as most other custom jewelers seem to).

That response is interesting, that they usually work the $288 into the overall cost. That is fairly consistent with the practice of most jewelers; after the materials, it factors into the labor costs, though I'm sure jewelers each have their own way of doing the breakdown.
BUT--What the heck is the $312 extra for??? Spinel tax?

I just don't get it--spinel is a durable stone. Its not like setting sphene, or apatite, or any number of stones that are more likely to be damaged during setting.
 

FallenRox

Shiny_Rock
Joined
May 1, 2011
Messages
248
pregcurious|1311995477|2980285 said:
$600 seems too high. I would bring my business elsewhere. How likely is that you can find another designer who can make your ring?
Yeah, exactly. And yes- there are others, it's just that I had made the decision to go with this company and thought I'd see it through until that curve ball came along... As the others have mentioned, I'm not so inclined to indulge in their "spinel" tax. Live and learn =)

I felt bad yesterday, but today I don't. Yes, there has been a lot of dialog and sketches, but in the end, my fiance ended up coming up with the design, so ... it is what it is. I'll be relieved to just move on. Seems like this project isn't ever going to be on my finger. lol good thing we moved the wedding date!
 

FallenRox

Shiny_Rock
Joined
May 1, 2011
Messages
248
IndyLady|1312047984|2980577 said:
That response is interesting, that they usually work the $288 into the overall cost. That is fairly consistent with the practice of most jewelers; after the materials, it factors into the labor costs, though I'm sure jewelers each have their own way of doing the breakdown.
BUT--What the heck is the $312 extra for??? Spinel tax?

I just don't get it--spinel is a durable stone. Its not like setting sphene, or apatite, or any number of stones that are more likely to be damaged during setting.
They also mentioned the cut- I think my interest in double claw prongs on a cut corner stone has them edgy too. *shrug all I know is that if someone isn't completely confident in what I want to do, I'm going to someone who is. *nod*

I'm also just going to blame lack of spinel education too. Yep.
 
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