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Help with old inherited Sapphire

minousbijoux

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Aug 5, 2010
Messages
12,422
It indicates that the sapphire contains some chromium, and the iron content is low enough not to quench the fluorescence. If the iron/titanium impurities (these are what colour sapphires blue) weren't there your sapphire would probably be a nice pink colour.

It's the chromium content in rubies that causes the red colour, and if there is very little iron they will fluoresce bright red in LW UV. It's also why the best quality rubies seem to glow from within when viewed in bright sunlight.
Nice summary - thanks, @Nick_G
 

CSpan

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Mar 7, 2016
Messages
681
I hate to think about the things I destroyed as a kid growing up because she told me they were *costume jewellery *. :eek2:
I have so many pieces - I didn’t want to keep making posts and annoying problem for their hard earned knowledge - so I’m trying to do as much online research as I can before I come hassle here. But everyone here has so much knowledge!!! It’s hard not to want to take advantage of that.
(Dammit now I want to post the weird broach I have that I have kept because it’s *THAT* ugly but so well made it baffled me.
***watch out for that thread***:lol-2:
Take advantage! No point in letting this knowledge go to waste (says the person with nothing to contribute) amd besides every post ends up being a learning opportunity for us all.
 

Beautiful-disaster

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Jul 14, 2020
Messages
271
It indicates that the sapphire contains some chromium, and the iron content is low enough not to quench the fluorescence. If the iron/titanium impurities (these are what colour sapphires blue) weren't there your sapphire would probably be a nice pink colour.

It's the chromium content in rubies that causes the red colour, and if there is very little iron they will fluoresce bright red in LW UV. It's also why the best quality rubies seem to glow from within when viewed in bright sunlight.
So informative!!
Thankyou so much.
wonder why this info is so hard to find?
 

Beautiful-disaster

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Jul 14, 2020
Messages
271
Thanks to @Nick_G I found this article which references it with pictures about half way though in case anyone was interested.
 

Bron357

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Jan 22, 2014
Messages
4,573
Yes, it’s uncommon but it’s chromium as a trace element.
interestingly, there are some red rubies that don’t glow under UV light. This is because the iron element overwhelms the chromium content. Long wave UV response can sometimes help with identifying origin.
 

Beautiful-disaster

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Jul 14, 2020
Messages
271
Ok there is a fair bit of chemistry/geology in that article...... did I mention I’m an artist?? :lol-2: Starting to wish I paid *alot* more attention in science at school lmao
Ugh.
it’s getting easier the more I read and research - but I have been trying to learn Portuguese at the same time and I have to say.... as intelligent as I like to think I am (;)2) I am really bad at pronunciation (thanks private school education) and more often then not put the emphasis on the wrong syllable when reading things.
Yes you can probably see how this leads to problems with doing both of those things as well and just generally pronouncing people’s names wrong etc of I have read it and not *heard* it.
Apparently it’s a form of dyslexia when I read the word faster then my brain can *file* it away for recall later. Which is strange because I am and have always been an avid reader with a large vocabulary (just very bad at spelling).

I keep running away from learning about gems because I know it’s not my *thing* - but curiosity gets me straight back in.
 

Bluemuse

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Jan 5, 2020
Messages
162
Loved seeing the fluorescence of your sapphire @Beautiful-disaster! What an awesome discovery. I never knew that could happen with a blue sapphire.
Really cool! I will have to get my hands on a UV light to check mine. I used to have access to one at work and a bunch of microscopes, but retirement ended that.
Art and science can be complementary in my experience. You probably won’t escape the lure of learning more and more about gems, especially when they have personal meaning for you.
 

Beautiful-disaster

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Jul 14, 2020
Messages
271
Loved seeing the fluorescence of your sapphire @Beautiful-disaster! What an awesome discovery. I never knew that could happen with a blue sapphire.
Really cool! I will have to get my hands on a UV light to check mine. I used to have access to one at work and a bunch of microscopes, but retirement ended that.
Art and science can be complementary in my experience. You probably won’t escape the lure of learning more and more about gems, especially when they have personal meaning for you.
Completely off subject but I have the Uv light for painting UV body art. It’s a strong torch to use when I’m painting in night clubs and events (as they Uv paints are one colour in normal light but glow a different colour).
Not good for the eye sight. I have come home from these jobs with burnt eyeballs from working under the lights so the torch is good to keep it away from me. (Apparently this is much worse if you have lightly pigmented eyes like blue and green as it doesn’t effect my artists with dark coloured eyes).
I haven’t painted (Or worked at all) in so long now I’m honestly starting to feel retired myself!


E19927E1-5486-4B48-BD05-8A16DC03E3F7.jpeg 5ABE245E-266E-41DF-891F-76D2E7AF4666.jpeg AC076433-40B5-4BDF-9A4F-29C4FC801135.jpeg
 

glitterata

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Apr 17, 2002
Messages
3,682
UV light is bad for your skin and eyes. Really pretty dangerous. It's not a good idea to play with it. If you have to use it, use UV protection goggles and keep it off your skin.
 

Beautiful-disaster

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Jul 14, 2020
Messages
271
UV light is bad for your skin and eyes. Really pretty dangerous. It's not a good idea to play with it. If you have to use it, use UV protection goggles and keep it off your skin.
Somebody should probably tell these kids ... They have had this type of lighting in clubs for ever. I’m glad I’m too old. I get in, paint and get out of there. Usually only do those types of events a few times a year. My eyes are very sensitive to it. The torch allows you to keep it away from you and just direct it at *things*.
 

bright&shiny

Shiny_Rock
Joined
May 11, 2009
Messages
255
Loved seeing the fluorescence of your sapphire @Beautiful-disaster! What an awesome discovery. I never knew that could happen with a blue sapphire.
Really cool! I will have to get my hands on a UV light to check mine. I used to have access to one at work and a bunch of microscopes, but retirement ended that.
Art and science can be complementary in my experience. You probably won’t escape the lure of learning more and more about gems, especially when they have personal meaning for you.
We use the pet UV light that we use to see if our puppy had an accident that we didn't find. Works great with jewelry, too ;)2
 

Bluemuse

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Jan 5, 2020
Messages
162
We use the pet UV light that we use to see if our puppy had an accident that we didn't find. Works great with jewelry, too ;)2
Thank you @bright&shiny!! So nice of you to make the suggestion.
You’ll never guess what I purchased a couple days ago!?! Exactly what you suggested!
I did some reading and figured out that would be the quickest and easiest way to obtain one.
It’s been fun checking out my rings.
After the reminder about protecting your eyes from UV light exposure I thought it’d be best to get protective goggles before playing around too much.
I discovered that my antique sapphire doesn’t have any, but a blue star sapphire I have does. Another interesting aspect of gems to explore. Thanks again!
 

Beautiful-disaster

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Jul 14, 2020
Messages
271
Thank you @bright&shiny!! So nice of you to make the suggestion.
You’ll never guess what I purchased a couple days ago!?! Exactly what you suggested!
I did some reading and figured out that would be the quickest and easiest way to obtain one.
It’s been fun checking out my rings.
After the reminder about protecting your eyes from UV light exposure I thought it’d be best to get protective goggles before playing around too much.
I discovered that my antique sapphire doesn’t have any, but a blue star sapphire I have does. Another interesting aspect of gems to explore. Thanks again!
Oh I should of said we got ours from Office works - works to check over hotel rooms etc too if you are the type!
 

Daisys and Diamonds

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Apr 30, 2019
Messages
6,088
Somebody should probably tell these kids ... They have had this type of lighting in clubs for ever. I’m glad I’m too old. I get in, paint and get out of there. Usually only do those types of events a few times a year. My eyes are very sensitive to it. The torch allows you to keep it away from you and just direct it at *things*.
It looks so much fun !
 

Bluemuse

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Jan 5, 2020
Messages
162
Oh I should of said we got ours from Office works - works to check over hotel rooms etc too if you are the type!
Wouldn’t have thought to lookin an office supply place. Good to know though.
I’m afraid of what I might see if I brought it
to a hotel.:???:
Love your body art photos! Hopefully you are still able to create in other mediums during all this quarantine time. Sorry the work aspect has evaporated temporarily. I hope live arts returns soon. I miss it.
 

Pinkmartini87

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Apr 10, 2017
Messages
802
@Beautiful-disaster Any updates on your beautiful sapphire? Are you still thinking of sending it off for a report? (May be hard given COVID unfortunately...)

Would love to hear confirmation that it’s unheated, and even better if it’s Kashmir—would be easily worth 5 digits if unheated, and much more if Kashmir.

IMHO a stone like that would be worth getting a report even if you are not planning on selling, for insurance purposes.
 

Beautiful-disaster

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Jul 14, 2020
Messages
271
@Beautiful-disaster Any updates on your beautiful sapphire? Are you still thinking of sending it off for a report? (May be hard given COVID unfortunately...)

Would love to hear confirmation that it’s unheated, and even better if it’s Kashmir—would be easily worth 5 digits if unheated, and much more if Kashmir.

IMHO a stone like that would be worth getting a report even if you are not planning on selling, for insurance purposes.
Unfortunately no update at the moment.
It’s driving me crazy not knowing and waiting but it’s for the best at the moment. I can’t bring myself to justify spending the one wage keeping us going at the moment on something like this. Especially if I’m not 100% on selling it.
I had expected to be back at work by now so I am giving in and applying for my super so I have extra money for things like this (so often you have to spend money to make money).

My partner will support whatever I want to do but is (very wisely) staying out of it as he still has both of his parents and doesn’t understand by deep attachment to things (but respects it for the most part). I did just catch him throwing out a lamp that used to belong to my great grandmother because the shade was broken and needed rewiring. To me it’s antique and at least should be given to someone to restore.. but to him it’s old and broken and in the way.
I have also been sick for the last week with a nasty flu (not COVID). But now have a wonderful cough that means people are treating me like I have the plague...... lol what’s really you going to do. My kid brought it home from school.

Hopefully I’ll have it booked in for an appointment for an assessment for a Re-polish (who is also has extensive experience with sapphires so he should be able to tell me a lot) and then off the to the lab for a full report.

Obviously I will need to get a valuation done if I have a hope of selling it - And would have to have the setting fixed or remade if I keep it. (I really miss wearing it and get very sad if I think about not getting to wear it again).

My issue with valuations is they are so far off the actual true value I find the whole system confusing and misleading - so if I’m going to pay for one it better be from the best! Otherwise isn’t it just someone’s (Supposedly educated) opinion? - and the market at the time in the particular region etc - all so variable.
 

Daisys and Diamonds

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Apr 30, 2019
Messages
6,088
Unfortunately no update at the moment.
It’s driving me crazy not knowing and waiting but it’s for the best at the moment. I can’t bring myself to justify spending the one wage keeping us going at the moment on something like this. Especially if I’m not 100% on selling it.
I had expected to be back at work by now so I am giving in and applying for my super so I have extra money for things like this (so often you have to spend money to make money).

My partner will support whatever I want to do but is (very wisely) staying out of it as he still has both of his parents and doesn’t understand by deep attachment to things (but respects it for the most part). I did just catch him throwing out a lamp that used to belong to my great grandmother because the shade was broken and needed rewiring. To me it’s antique and at least should be given to someone to restore.. but to him it’s old and broken and in the way.
I have also been sick for the last week with a nasty flu (not COVID). But now have a wonderful cough that means people are treating me like I have the plague...... lol what’s really you going to do. My kid brought it home from school.

Hopefully I’ll have it booked in for an appointment for an assessment for a Re-polish (who is also has extensive experience with sapphires so he should be able to tell me a lot) and then off the to the lab for a full report.

Obviously I will need to get a valuation done if I have a hope of selling it - And would have to have the setting fixed or remade if I keep it. (I really miss wearing it and get very sad if I think about not getting to wear it again).

My issue with valuations is they are so far off the actual true value I find the whole system confusing and misleading - so if I’m going to pay for one it better be from the best! Otherwise isn’t it just someone’s (Supposedly educated) opinion? - and the market at the time in the particular region etc - all so variable.
RIP Aunty's lamp
Really glad you don't have covid
Its hay fevor season here, so not a good time to be coughing or sneezing
Hope your feeling better soon
 

Pinkmartini87

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Apr 10, 2017
Messages
802
@Beautiful-disaster I’m very sorry for your hardships and sending you my thoughts and best, best wishes. Hoping you feel better soon.

I agree with you on several points re valuation. The more experienced PSers please do chime in, but in my humble experience I tend to think of reports as being in 2 categories:

1) To ID the gem. This would be for instance sending to a well reputed and widely recognized lab (in the States here GIA or AGL). This is so one knows what one has, and in the case of such substantial sapphires such as yours, it is imperative to know if the sapphire has had treatment and what the origin is, since that could mean many thousands of dollars in difference in value. Although AGL or GIA does not name value obviously, I think for most buyers of large sapphires this is a must know to set a ballpark price. Certainly I would not buy a large sapphire without a report to guide me in how much I’m willing to pay.

Also vital for you (and your loved ones) to know if you have something in hand that is $10,000 or $50,000, may make a difference in what you decide to do with it, and may warrant taking out insurance for it to guard against loss/damage/theft. Unwise I think to keep a $50,000 item at home without some added level of security.

2.To value the gem. This is best done by someone with standardized training (ie a local jeweler who happens to be GIA certified, etc), although many jewelers in this position will still prefer to “take an open book test” aka they will almost always ask to see an ID report to help them in their valuation. Their job is not to tell you what you have, but rather what you can expect to get for it based on an ID report.

Here’s where it gets infinitely tricky since “value” can mean many things (replacement value vs auction value vs market value and so forth), and someone who overvalues piece in fact may be doing you a disservice since that would mean needing to take out more insurance for it in case you decide to keep it. Also, unless this person has provable credibility (ie GIA certified or otherwise well know in trade circles), the valuation is worth very little and potential buyers may take it with a grain of salt. I find in my experience many local jewelers (especially those who charge for appraisals) to overvalue (makes the customer happy by telling them they have an expensive piece, and the customer is likely to return in the future), whereas auction house appraisers tend to undervalue especially if you decide to put item on auction with them (setting a lower estimate aka lower starting bid price may mean drawing in more interested bidders).

So in summary, I would perhaps prioritize the ID report over a valuation report, since with a good ID report many of us on PS will be able to give you a ballpark value of what you can expect to get for it in case you decide to sell, since after all folks like us on PS are the market/target audience.

And without an ID report, a valuation report on its own is likely worth much less in credibility.

A valuation report comes into play more IF you find that your sapphire is indeed unheated and with good origin, since then, you would really want a seasoned expert to give you as precise an estimate as possible of its sale value range as we would expect the sale value of a large unheated sapphire to be high, and any margins of error in price estimation can potentially really cost you.

Good luck and please keep us all posted. We are all rooting for you!
 
Last edited:

Beautiful-disaster

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Jul 14, 2020
Messages
271
So I got the go ahead from my partner and sent Doug Menadue from Bespoke gems an email about getting an appointment for him to look at the sapphire as a candidate for repolish.

I noticed on his website he says he tries to respond within 3days. I haven’t heard back from him (although it’s only been 24hrs - hahahahaha) I’m antsy because I finially got to do something about it and now I have to wait again. I’m very bad at waiting. I have been known to walk very long distances rather then wait for a bus. Lmao.
I will email again next week if I haven’t heard back. From what I can see there really aren’t many people in Sydney offering his level of skill.
Patience.

ps - OMG i found the edit option for posts! The relief is real. Lmao
 

Skyjems

Shiny_Rock
Trade
Joined
Jul 9, 2020
Messages
108
I don't know that cutter, but everyone's swamped with work because of COVID.

Staff working from home means that we are doing the daily tasks like mailings and dealing with selecting pairs/sets of gems to be made up.

And COVID rules mean that a 5 minute stop to pick up a chain now takes an hour...

Anyway, my point is that we all very much appreciate your patience as clients, thankfully the jewelry industry is doing better than expected during COVID, but it's kind of like learning how to swim in molasses!
 

Beautiful-disaster

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Jul 14, 2020
Messages
271
I don't know that cutter, but everyone's swamped with work because of COVID.

Staff working from home means that we are doing the daily tasks like mailings and dealing with selecting pairs/sets of gems to be made up.

And COVID rules mean that a 5 minute stop to pick up a chain now takes an hour...

Anyway, my point is that we all very much appreciate your patience as clients, thankfully the jewelry industry is doing better than expected during COVID, but it's kind of like learning how to swim in molasses!
Yes I should appreciate that perhaps things aren’t running as normal. It hadn’t occurred to me they would have more work as with so many people losing their jobs it would usually mean the luxury’s are the last thing on the list to spend money on.
I know this because what I do is considered a luxury service. My partner and I aren’t the waiting type. Once we make a decision we like to make it happen as soon as possible. We have been known to book a 2 month European Holiday two weeks before we leave - or jump on a cruise last min.

I will be patient - and try not to spend the money allocated for this on other things .... but that never seems to work very well.
 

Beautiful-disaster

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Jul 14, 2020
Messages
271
I’m in Sydney Australia so we aren’t in a lockdown or anything. I actually waited until now for that reason. Plus his site doesn’t say anything about COVID delays or requirements.... but it does say something about having problems getting certain email form Yahoo etc and going keep trying to contact if you don’t hear back.

I was thinking if he is working on a project the last thing he would be doing is replying to emails.
 

GliderPoss

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Sep 25, 2008
Messages
2,617
Hang in there! :wavey: I think last thing any of us want is for you to make a rushed decision on this. Doug will be able to give you good answers and he can repolish/recut too if you wish. Personally I would NOT risk posting to GIA or overseas at this point, GAA (Oz) will suffice just fine for ID. They have an office in Sydney I believe.
 

Bron357

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Jan 22, 2014
Messages
4,573
I’ve been in to see Doug, he’s really lovely. He does do trips away fossicking / buying for gems every now and then (ie up Inverell way for sapphires). He has THE most amazing HUGE Aquamarine crystal he found out fossicking. It’s on display in his office/ workshop. Youd want to get it repolished before seeing Bill Sechos. It will drop a few points of carat weight with a repolish so you’d want your report accurate. I’m not sure if Bill is “in” at the moment for personal visits.
 

Beautiful-disaster

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Jul 14, 2020
Messages
271
I’ve been in to see Doug, he’s really lovely. He does do trips away fossicking / buying for gems every now and then (ie up Inverell way for sapphires). He has THE most amazing HUGE Aquamarine crystal he found out fossicking. It’s on display in his office/ workshop. Youd want to get it repolished before seeing Bill Sechos. It will drop a few points of carat weight with a repolish so you’d want your report accurate. I’m not sure if Bill is “in” at the moment for personal visits.
I was having a look and he doesn’t seem to have any *competition* in the market with his skills in Sydney.

Others I have come across don’t have professional websites and/or have what I would consider less then perfect results. So I am happy to wait and take it to him when he is available.
My husband actually works with a guy who used to be a jewellery and make his own pieces. He asked my hubby to bring it to work with him so he could have a look but I don’t see the point of getting *just some jewellers opinion*.
I also have some trust issues after leaving a deposit on a ER and taking my mother to see it only for the jeweller to spend a ridiculous time *looking* for something they obviously sold. Came out with an empty setting and loose diamonds arguing that because I hadn’t decided if I wanted the piece reset they have *taken it apart*. We lost $500 as they wouldn’t allow us to use the credit on anything else instore or give us our money back. They said it was a *layby* and if I didn’t buy what the receipt said I would lose my money.
I took it to the ombudsman and everything to no avail.
We were young and very naive - still hurts whenever I walk/drive past that jewellers.

Then when we did buy my actual ER (much better quality for a lot more money) elsewhere. The guy that made it and sold it to us told us the stone was a H&A Vs1 G clarity and that we should consider having it laser in graves so it couldn’t be *switched out* when having it cleaned or worked on.
Or to make sure to always take it back to him. Which honestly freaked me out a little.
So now I’m paranoid about parting with any of my jewellery.
Although I must say I feel ALOT better about it now reading here how impossible it would be to match the sapphire to even attempt to switch it out on me (now it’s just the paranoia of the mail - could never do it so everything will have to be done in person or not at all). I actually have a closet full of designer bags, shoes and clothes I want to sell and can’t trust the post enough to sell them.
 

Gloria27

Shiny_Rock
Premium
Joined
Jul 21, 2015
Messages
377
Found a similar piece on Etsy, maybe it will help dating it as style seems pretty similar, stone colour and carat weight too.
 
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