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How common are diffusion stones?

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innerkitten

Ideal_Rock
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Aug 1, 2003
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I know most sapphires rubies , and some other stones too, are usually heated and that heat is an accepted form of treatment. But how common are diffusion stones these days at the average jewelry store?
 

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starryeyed

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Nov 6, 2006
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Hi Innerkitten. That''s a great question! If diffusion treated stones were really common in the US, the gemstone market would be upside down! Here are a couple of links that might help:

GIA resources

AGTA article

I am not a gemstone expert, just a consumer, but I''ll tell you what I know. The whole point to diffusion is to give a stone color that it wouldn''t have naturally, thereby increasing it''s value. I think the treatment process made news with the introduction of large quanities of orange sapphires.

Gemstones are a matter of trust - it''s really important to trust your dealer, and that your dealer trusts his upstream suppliers. I couldn''t imagine a reputable person along the chain would be willing to risk his/her business by passing off diffused stones as natural, or just heat-treated.

It''s a scary thing though!
 

innerkitten

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Aug 1, 2003
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5,623
Thanks for the info. I''ll take a look at it. What got me thinking was while looking at a pink sapphire etirnity band I asked if they knew what types of treatments were used on the stones. They said they didn''t have the information on stones that small. I didn''t really like that answer so I guess I won''t buy from them. But anyway, Macy''s has a little card board sign in their fine jewelry section that say''s they aim to sell stones that are not diffused and that they consider the practice dishonest. And I consider macy''s to have what the average jewelry store would have ( not super high end ). Another store I contacted said pretty much the same thing as Macy''s, that they try to stay away from diffused stones and that they believe that the dealer they buy from is trustworthy etc.

I guess you really have to really trust the person your buying from, or have it looked at by another person and perhaps certified if it''s a very expensive stone.
 

riogems

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Apr 5, 2006
Messages
194
"I guess you really have to really trust the person your buying from, or have it looked at by another person and perhaps certified if it''s a very expensive stone."

That says it best. Trust is a must. A definitive "check-up" of a stone (like the equivalent of an annual medical physical) -- might also cost as much as a medical physical -- which is why you should reserve it for a very expensive stone.
 

DiamondExpert

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Jan 15, 2003
Messages
1,245
Be treatment is a serious problem...especially for orange/ish and orange-pink (Padaradscha) sapphires. Some are blasted to the extent that they take on a quite unrealistic saturation, and combimed with relatively low price may be more or less a dead give away for treatment.

Others are more subtle, and in the Pad. area this can represent quite expensive purchases. Corundum with a substantial price tag in the orange, orange-pink colors should be very carefully examined and tested before $ exchanges hands!...do NOT assume - verify!
 
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