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Engagement Ring Purchased - Need Opinions on Price..

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amiller

Rough_Rock
Joined
Jan 11, 2003
Messages
7
So I went ahead for the big plunge and bought it. I spent a few months researching on many diamond boards (including this one) and finally found a diamond with the exact specs I wanted.

I received the stone and it's absolutely gorgeous. I can barely see an inclusion (since I was trying very hard to look) near the side of the table and am very satisfied with the quality (I knew that buying an SI3 I might see something, and knew that it would probably be a very good I1 and that's what it turned out to be). I was also surprised in that I can barely see the bowtie in this stone compared to others I've seen in the store. Overall, I was very pleased with the overall quality.

What made me extremely happy is that at first, the jewler said no returns on the platinum ring I bought with it since I had it specially made, though he would take back the stone if I didn't like it (I purchased over the internet). After he had it made he called me back TWICE and told me he wanted it for his wife for xmas and was wondering if I'd cancel my order so he could have it and if I didn't like it, he'd take it all back anyway.

I ended up with:
EGL Certificate
Weight 1.37 ct.
Shape MARQUISE BRILLIANT
Color F
Clarity SI3
Measurements 10.94 x 5.79 x 3.56 mm
Depth 61.6
Table 54.0
Crown 9.4
Pavilion 40.2
Girdle SL. THICK TO VERY THICK FACETED
Polish GOOD TO VERY GOOD
Symmetry GOOD
Fluorescence NONE
Culet NONE
Comments
Appraisal-Value $9350.00

Platinum band, cathedral setting, tiffany style size 6.

There is a picture of the stone attached to the post. If you'd like more, please let me know.

Stone $2800
Ring $340 (yes, I know I overpaid ~$100)

Total $3140

I can't remember as I don't have my documentation at hand at the moment, but I believe it was ~40% of the current rapport prices (if someone has the current prices, please let me know).

I'm planning to ask her on Jan 30th.

My question is, I think I got a good deal, but I just wanted to make sure there was nothing I missed.

Thanks,
Alan

MVC-003S.JPG
 

Garry H (Cut Nut)

Super_Ideal_Rock
Trade
Joined
Aug 15, 2000
Messages
15,670
You have done all this research and what do you really want to know? You know you got a good price.

We are glad you are happy with your purchase.
And if I said you could have bought better would you believe me?

what would be nice would be if you told the story of how you shopped and compared stones and arrived at a decision, and also why if you have doubts you chose not to use an independant appraiser.

You should know we can not give you that service for free without eyeballing the stone.
 

trichrome

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Dec 9, 2002
Messages
397
I agree with CutNut
You got a good deal.
Also, i trully agree with your choice.
You bought a pretty icy white stone that is eyeclean!
I mean, who's gonna look at it under 10x magnification? Nobody!
Of course clarity is important but for the average customer
I would in order of importance suggest :
1)Cut (not Ideal though...cause many stones are excellent without being Ideals.
2)Color (H,I or over is fine)
3)Clarity (SI1, SI2 or SI3...why not? as long as it is eyeclean IN the setting)
Then depending on your budget, you choose the bigger size you can afford.

Trichrome.
 

amiller

Rough_Rock
Joined
Jan 11, 2003
Messages
7
(here's the addendum to above)

Basically, I just wanted to make sure there wasn't anything I overlooked and wanted opinions to see if I did indeed get a good deal on the stone (regardless, I am happy with the stone and price I paid).

In regards to my research, I spent about 2 months reading about the 4C's as swell as reading up on what dimensions were desirable to get in a stone for a marquise cut (i.e. ranges for crown, table, pavillion, etc.). I settled on a $3k price range and went shopping. I looked everywhere from ebay to Tiffany's (the actual store), some with my girlfriend (Tiffany's) and some without (ebay). Ebay does have some good deals with what appear to be reputable sellers selling cert'd stones, but there's a lot of junk. What I foudn to be the best deals on there were the .5-.8ct stones that are cert'd that have no reserve on their bid price. Unfortunately, I was looking in the .9-.99 range to stay within my budget.

As far as the 4 C's, I wanted:
Color: as as far as I can tell (and see) D-F are all colorless and all the same to the naked eye (mine included from shopping experience) and they're both in the highest category you can buy. Why pay extra for a D when I can get an F for less? Or why buy a 1ct D when I can get a 1.15ct F? That was my thinking.

Clarity: I applied the same philosophy to the clarity and went looking for an SI1-SI3. I was hoping for an SI2 as only EGL grades SI3's and they're halfway between SI2's and I1's. They "may" have a defect noticable to the naked eye. A gem magazine did a compaison between GIA and EGL a while back and found EGL more lax in the standards and GIA (i.e. GIA would call it an SI2 and EGL would call it an SI1, as a side note, GIA is nonprofit and EGL is for profit). Either way, all I wanted was a stoen that I could look at and know was a good stone and not readily see a defect (I mean, really, how many people really inspect in detail the quality of an engagement ring stone on someone's finger).

I woud have gone for an I1 if the defect wa well hidden, but since I was probably going to be buying over the internet due to the lower prices and couldn't inspect before I bought, I had to stick in the SI class, SI2 preferrably. I was a bit skeptical of the SI3 seeing as how it might be an I1, but I just hoped it was a "good" I1.

Carat: I was initially told .93-.99ct was significantly less expensive than going over the 1.00, but I didn't find that to hold true so much. There may have been a slight prejudice to >100pt, but not much. I saw a lot of 1.03, 1.06cts for just a bit more than .98s. I was hoping to get a stone right around ~1ct.

So how did I end up with a 1.4ct F SI3? I was at the right place at the right time. I found a jeweler's website and was talking to him and he mentioned in passing he just got this stone in. We talked and I bargained him down to $2800 + $340 for a platinum ring (WG would have been my choice, but my girlfriend demanded platinum...oh well).

I didn't have a 3rd party apprasial for 2 reasons:
1) The jeweler I bought from lived 6 hours away and I asked if he would meet me at a 3rd party jeweler of my choice to have an apprasial and he said yes. We actually set everything up (date, time, etc.). To me, the fact that he agreed to go said he would stand behind his work (plus, 12 hours of driving is a pain).

2) He gave me a money back guarantee. When I got the stone, I went and had a jeweler verify that it was the one that matched the cert and I was happy with the way it looked and with what I paid so that was all I really needed.

My best advice is start on google and work your way out from there. I told myself I would research for 1 month and then start looking to buy. No matter what kind of deal I found in the first month, I wouldn't let myself buy as I'd always find another later, and I did.

Some resources I used:
google.com
groups.google.com
ebay
this website
Any website with discussion groups are usually good that that's where you learn a lot.

I'd like to put a plug out for a jeweler that i talked to that I really learned a lot from, but unfortunately did not buy as he couldn't match the deal I found. His website is http://www.awesomegems.com. He was the nicest guy I talked to in my whole dealings with the jewelery business and the most honest to deal with as well. Once you do your research, I'd start there. Even though I didn't buy, I'm going to him next time as he had some great deals and was very helpful.

Alan
 

amiller

Rough_Rock
Joined
Jan 11, 2003
Messages
7
(one last addendum)

Just so it's more accessible, here are some more guidelines I found on finding a good marquise. This is a quote from "barry" on this board from a post he made a while ago:

"Length to Width ratio: at least 1.8/1 (2:1 is optimal).
Table Range: 57% to 68%
Depth: 62% " 75%
Crown height:11% " 15.6%
Girdles: Medium to slightly thick
Be cautious with extremely thin to very thin girdles as this may exacerbate chipping and fracturing. "

Also, a good resource for all cuts can be found at:
http://www.diamondfile.com/fancy-shaped-diamond-tutorial.htm

Alan
 

Rhino

Ideal_Rock
Trade
Joined
Mar 28, 2001
Messages
6,275
I don't know about the "eye clean" part. I can see black inclusions in the left half of that picture of the stone. 40% off of an EGL cert on what they would grade as an SI3 may indeed be an I2 which means you may have paid close to list off what the stone would be truly conservatively graded as.

Overpaid by $100 ($340) for a platinum cathedral setting? I would question the content of the metal. For a quality platinum setting I PAY close to $300 and many times MORE. Remember, when you seek to drain every drop of blood from a deal the seller can find ways (and there are many of them) to give you what you're paying for and chince the deal without you realizing that you may not be getting what it seems. You may want to consider having everything checked by a reputable appraiser like those who are recommended on these boards (RockDoc or Dave Atlas). Many people (sad to say consumers) find out the hard way that in this biz ... things are NOT always what they seem.

Peace,
Rhino
 

trichrome

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Dec 9, 2002
Messages
397
Rhino,

I agree with you. BUT I'm 100% pro-consumer even if I'm not one of them.
The consumer should always try to get the best deal. From a consumer
point of view, paying less for the best quality is very important.
One of the reasons why people try to "suck more of the blood" today
is because they were abused by their jeweller in the past when people
were not knowing a thing about diamonds. And it's not right
for a dealer to not be 100% honest with his consumer.
For example, why are stones not sold using Rap prices? Well, simple.
IF you as a consumer would be knowing the price your jeweller paid
for a stone (as a % off Rap), you would be more than happy
to pay, let's say 15% or 25% or more than this price, because you know
what you're paying for. But without knowing that, you can only rely
on other sources of information.

Trichrome.
 

amiller

Rough_Rock
Joined
Jan 11, 2003
Messages
7
I looked at the picture again, and those black marks are a lighting effect. They're not visible nor exist in that location on the actual stone.

Alan
 

lacina

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Dec 27, 2002
Messages
146
Allan,
No worries,
You have done a great job!The price is very good for a Retail customer
and EGL is not so bad anymore,.. The color will be off a bit but no more than one shade off from GIA standard. Depending witch EGL lab is grading it.
I actually agree with SI3 grade, because there are stones that have more than one garden of inclusions but still eye clean,... Depending on the location of inclusions you can't grade it I1 or SI2 Split clarity? Maybe,...
SI3 grade takes care of that. It looks better on the paper!,...

I just had a case, where a gentleman has privately purchased 1ct Round Brilliant I was sold to him as SI2 Russian Ideal cut,... This stone was set in the tention type setting. One of the gardens was so close to the girdle, that was hidden inside the setting.
After I removed the stone, the grade was not an SI2 anymore,...

Since we go by GIA standards, we had to issue the grade of I1,... Believe me this guy was NOT happy at all about it. He took it away from me for a second opinion. After a couple of days, he is back with three different results.
I1,..SI3,.. and SI3 still not happy,... (grin)

He made me design a setting that would hide the inclusion the way it was before!,.. All amazed that it can be done,.. And how setting can change the clarity grade!
Can we hide more inclusions to make it an SI1 or VS2? he said,...
Wel,...hmm,.. no,...because we would need to hide more than 1/2 of the Diamond!(grin)
I told him I can't change the clarity of the diamond on the paper because I know what it is ! The stone was clearly an I1 and the grade could not be undisclosed the way I have seen it unset,.. It does appear to be an SI2 in the setting! I think I know what grade he gets from someone else,...

Bottom line, the stone was beautifuly cut and gorgeous! SI3 is indeed a very good I1 and very much desirable grade since the price is still attractive,.. True "F" SI3 well cut stone can look more beautiful to the eye than F/flawless with a poor cut,...


George
 

amiller

Rough_Rock
Joined
Jan 11, 2003
Messages
7
George -

Thanks for your comments. The bottom line is I'm very happy with my stone as my requirements. Thanks for your input!

Alan
 
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