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Is this Alexandrite good value?

Discussion in 'Colored Gemstones' started by dnzs, Jul 14, 2019.

  1. Anne111
    Shiny_Rock

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    by Anne111 » Jul 15, 2019
    you could pay for the GIA report first and if OK, later for the gem, but with all this process gia, jeweler appraisal. etc. it takes months, what if the vendor goes belly up, or the website disappears_
    that said, far too much a window for my taste. new vendors pop up like mushrooms here and there, some of them ar magic, and POOF they are gone.
     
  2. Bron357
    Ideal_Rock

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    by Bron357 » Jul 15, 2019
    No worries. I’m a long time “on line” buyer living here in Australia while most the good stuff in the US.
    With the advent of online shopping, a whole new world of opportunities has arisen but one must be cautious.
    The problem with Alexandrite is that it’s rare and expensive. It’s a very difficult gem to buy on the basis of photos. What the eye sees and the camera captures can be markedly different.
    And as others have said it is a “myth” that an Alexandrite is “emerald by day, ruby by night”. In reality, even the best Alex’s in normal inside lighting look “meh” especially if it’s a combination of artificial light and natural light.
    On line vendors naturally want to make their wares look as attractive as possible and photos are easily “modified”.
    I’d be concerned if the vendor can’t provide you with alternate photos. It’s a significant purchase. A vendor should be able to accommodate such a request, maybe not within 24 hours, but a request for “a photo on the hand outside in natural light” is an important photo to see if you’re buying an Alexandrite. Perhaps he doesn’t “hold” the gems?
    And only pay via PayPal, upon specified invoice to you and preferably using a credit card. Don’t be tempted by any offer of $$$ saving to use Bank Wire or Bank Transfer. There’s a thread here on Pricescope for a vendor called “Enchanted Diamonds”, who has gone bad leaving dozens of buyers out of their money and without an engagement ring with no recourse because they paid by bank wire to save a few hundred dollars.
    If you’re not 100% confident with this vendor, being as you are an overseas buyer, spending many thousands of hard earns money, I’d consider passing.
     
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  3. Bron357
    Ideal_Rock

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    by Bron357 » Jul 15, 2019
    And you might like to look at eBay item no 192952365547.
    The vendor has a number of Alexandrite rings (amongst other gems) with 100% feedback for over 600 purchases.
    The point here is this vendor is using normal type photography so you can actually “see” the colour AND these rings come with a GIA report from the outset.
    This seller has been on eBay since 2002, that’s a long time.
    This seller sells expensive rings and his customers have ALL be very happy. This is the best way to shop online in my opinion, eBay is probably the safest and most regulated online buying environment.
     
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  4. dnzs
    Rough_Rock

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    by dnzs » Jul 15, 2019
    Thanks again Bron357. I actually found this seller on Ebay, also with high reviews, and long time member- https://www.ebay.com/itm/Exquisite-...ing/254257888899?_trksid=p2485497.m4902.l9144

    What do you make of that? Legit?

    I guess to sum it all up, I've asked the seller to send the ring to AGL (I offered to pay upfront for the test). I have also asked for additional pictures, and a 'no questions asked' refund guarantee in writing. I think that if I get all of that, I would feel comfortable to continue with the purchase.

    I have bought alot online over the years, and I feel like I can sense a scam, or dodgy site, and my alarm bells didn't go off with this one. However, as you, and others have mentioned, Alexandrite needs extra special attention to detail and care.

    I do consider myself a diligent online shopper, but the desire for Alexandrite has really made it that much more complicated :wall:

    Thanks again
     
    


    


  5. T L
    Super_Ideal_Rock

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    by T L » Jul 15, 2019
    You can ask for additional pictures, but what if the
    AGL report comes back with less desirable color ways or a poor color change? It could be natural but an inferior stone. The seller could still send enhanced photos to dupe you.
     
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  6. dnzs
    Rough_Rock

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    by dnzs » Jul 15, 2019
    Thank T L

    I will not pay for the ring until I get more photos, and the AGL lab certificate. Assuming they come back ok, I think I would feel comfortable to purchase.
     
  7. T L
    Super_Ideal_Rock

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    by T L » Jul 15, 2019
    Well if the AGL lab report comes back stating a color change of brownish and/or grayish somewhere in the colorways, you’ll be okay with that? You may have to eat the cost of the report if it comes back with unfavorable characteristics.
     
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  8. dnzs
    Rough_Rock

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    by dnzs » Jul 15, 2019
    HI T L

    There is always a risk that things don't come out as nice as the pictures. I think I would rather lose the cost of AGL certificate showing unfavourable characteristics, rather than losing the cost of the entire ring. If the AGL cert. comes back with unfavourable characteristics, , then I would try and get a refund from PayPal, but it is a risk I'd be willing to take, because I really like this ring.

    There is always a risk involved...and if I'm getting duped, I'd rather be duped for a few hundred for a certificate, then a few thousand for a ring.
     
  9. chrono
    Super_Ideal_Rock

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    by chrono » Jul 15, 2019
    What is his return policy? Is it a full refund? Is there a restocking fee?
    How long is the review and return window?
    If you have to return it, will it be a hassle / expensive to insure and ship back?
    If he is altering colour on his website, who is to say he isn't going to alter those you requested?

    In short, too much risk for a ring. If I have to be this cautious every step of the way and still have to fight for my money back through PP and etc, it's not worth it. I want my buying experience to be pleasant, enjoyable and confident.
     
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  10. dnzs
    Rough_Rock

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    by dnzs » Jul 15, 2019
    HI chrono!

    Thanks for your comments. As it stands, the seller has confirmed he will honour a no questions asked refund policy. He has also agreed to send the ring to AGL to get certified, and to send additional photos. There is no re-stocking fee

    When I questions him about the photos, he explained "...there are strict rules of daylight jewellery photography. In gemstone business the daylight pictures is accept as such only when taken in studio under daylighting which is 5000 Kelvin. Anything more and or less then that will not be accepted in gemstone industry as daylight. That is why I have sent you a picture taken under this precise lighting conditions"

    I do feel confident with this seller, as he has been responsive to all my questions so far. I am quite suspicious by nature, and I know that there is so much fake jewellery and stuff online, so I'm just going babysteps here. The seller has been more than patient, considering the amounts of e-mails we've had. Unfortunately, probably anywhere I order from will be a hassle if I need to return it, so I can't really factor that in.
     
    


    


  11. chrono
    Super_Ideal_Rock

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    by chrono » Jul 15, 2019
    I find alexandrite to be difficult to photograph, often times disappointing when viewed in person.

    I would request for non-studio pictures.
    Will it be an AGL brief?
    Is the agreement all written down formally in an email, dated and signed?
     
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  12. dnzs
    Rough_Rock

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    by dnzs » Jul 15, 2019
    THanks chrono,

    He will send it to the Prestige Report at AGL, which looks like the best option for a certificate. I'm still waiting for the non studio pics.

    As for our e-mails, all done in gmail, and each e-mail is signed by the vendor.
     
  13. chrono
    Super_Ideal_Rock

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    by chrono » Jul 15, 2019
    Who is paying the cost of the report? I looked up pricing and it costs $180 USD for a mounted stone. I presume just the ID only because there are several levels of Prestige Reports.

    http://aglgemlab.com/pricelist
     
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  14. lovedogs
    Ideal_Rock

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    by lovedogs » Jul 15, 2019
    OP said he will be paying for the report. I think this will end poorly, for all the reasons others stated above. My guess is that it's a natural alexandrite, but will show poor color change, muddy brown color IRL, or otherwise be very unappealing in person. unfortunately, that would mean OP has to pay for shipping stuff back and forth, and for the lab report. IMHO it's not worth it. There are no magic 'deals' in jewelry. If this vendor could sell this for normal prices, he would.
     
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  15. chrono
    Super_Ideal_Rock

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    by chrono » Jul 15, 2019
    Unfortunately, I agree with you on all points.
     
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  16. lovedogs
    Ideal_Rock

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    by lovedogs » Jul 15, 2019
    Yup, this is why I think OP is going to be dissapointed. The vendor quite clearly isn't honest with his photos.
     
  17. dnzs
    Rough_Rock

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    by dnzs » Jul 15, 2019
    Thanks lovedogs. Honestly, you've pretty much summed up my thoughts here. I'm waiting for a last set of additional photos before I decide to go through with it or not, but as the general sentiment of the thread has proven... it doesn't look promising.

    I'll post the new photos when/if I get them.
     
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  18. JPie
    Brilliant_Rock

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    by JPie » Jul 15, 2019
    I have not been able to find any such rules about daylight jewelry photography with a Google search. I suspect that is because this seller is making it up. I wouldn’t do business with someone who lies to avoid sending photos in daylight.
     
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  19. Bron357
    Ideal_Rock

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    by Bron357 » Jul 15, 2019
    Sorry, total nonsense about Studio lighting being the requirement.
    The fact is your fiancée will be wearing the ring in natural daylight. She will be wearing her ring in the office, inside your home at night, at the supermarket. This is where she and others will see and admire the ring.
    Who cares what colours “studio lighting” produces if neither she or anyone else is ever going to see those colours in real life!
    You are buying an expensive gem whose number 1 desired attribute is its intriguing and magical visual appearance / colour change.
     
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  20. Bron357
    Ideal_Rock

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    by Bron357 » Jul 15, 2019
    This eBay seller is the same guy from the website.
    A few things I don’t like.
    His feedback is mostly “private”. A potential buyer can’t see what he/she has been selling and at what price to get a feel for quality of prior sales.
    He is using the word Antique in listings, the rings are NOT antique.
    He is selling a ring as a Ruby and is also using the word Padparadscha (an Orange/ pink sapphire) in the title. A gem can’t be both.
    This seller sells photos of jewellery. Yes, he has listings where you “buy” an image of pretty jewellery for 1 cent. What the !
    That said, if you want to buy from this guy, buy through eBay.
    Just be aware that it is unlikely the colours displayed in the vendors photos will be seen and enjoyed in real life.
     
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  21. lovedogs
    Ideal_Rock

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    by lovedogs » Jul 15, 2019
    I hate this "vendor" the more I learn about him. He seems like a scam artist, through and through.
     
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  22. lovedogs
    Ideal_Rock

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  23. the_mother_thing
    Ideal_Rock

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    by the_mother_thing » Jul 15, 2019
    From the appraisal, I was able to decipher the GIA report #, and look it up on GIA’s report check.

    I’ll defer to others who are more familiar with GIA’s reports on colored stones. There’s no mention of any treatment (not even a ‘none’ statement), strength of color change, etc.
     
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  24. voce
    Brilliant_Rock

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    by voce » Jul 15, 2019
    I think GIA doesn't deal with enough alexandrites to comment on treatments.
     
  25. T L
    Super_Ideal_Rock

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    by T L » Jul 16, 2019
    As far as I know, alexandrite is not treated, but nothing surprises me these days. I suspect clarity enhancement might be employed.
     
  26. dnzs
    Rough_Rock

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    by dnzs » Jul 16, 2019
    Thanks everyone for all the comments and advice. I really appreciate it all.

    Just following up. I originally had reservations about the seller, and some of them have been resolved, others not.

    I asked for additional photos, and I was provided just one. Here it is. Taken late afternoon.
    ALEXANDRITE IN A DAYLIGHT.jpg
    Does the new picture of this ring change any opinions? It does match my expectations of what I though it would look like when I asked. Less of the typical green and red colour, and more of a purple. What almost everyone has been saying, is that it is very hard to get good pictures of alexandrite, it will look different depending on the person/moniter they have, and there are many colours to it.

    I no there has been a lot of suspicious against the seller, which is why I started this whole thread.

    As far as I can tell, the seller has been honest with me, and answered all my questions. I can't answer for his website, or all of the things he claims or says, but I don't feel like I've been intentionally misled, as has been the case in other places. I know there is always issues, and sometimes things work out, and other times they don't.

    I personally really like this ring. I like the design, and I even like the stone (based on the pictures...which seem to be the main point of contention).

    I'm going on the assumption that the ring is natural alexandrite, and I feel confident that if it is not, then I will be refunded.

    Thank you all, and I know it can be frustrating to see a well meaning person get scammed online before your very eyes after continual warnings, and I appreciate the concern, and I have dealt with dodgy sellers that turned out to be legit before, and I feel confident that in the event it all blows up in my face, I will get a refund, and be out a few hundred dollars, which is not going to ruin me, but for some reason, I really like this ring.

    I have not committed to pay anything yet. Let me know if anything about the new image seems wrong from a more experienced eye.
     
  27. icy_jade
    Ideal_Rock

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    by icy_jade » Jul 16, 2019
    @dnzs I don’t know enough to comment on the stone but just want to say that I hope it will turn out well for you.
     
  28. dnzs
    Rough_Rock

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    by dnzs » Jul 16, 2019
    Thanks icy_jade

    I really appreciate the sentiment. I still have not decided on anything, and I am learning towards not buying.

    I love the design, but as many people have said, there seems to be a serious shadow of doubt over the vendor, and the true authenticity/quality of the stone.
     
  29. chrono
    Super_Ideal_Rock

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    by chrono » Jul 16, 2019
    The clarity looks terrible in that picture.
     
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  30. dnzs
    Rough_Rock

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    by dnzs » Jul 16, 2019
    Thanks Chrono. I'm not sure exactly what counts as clarity for alexandrite. I'm not under the impression that this is a super valuable, amazing alexandrite, and I'm fine with lower clarity. I personally like that is has darker center.

    Obviously, this picture doesn't show any colour change. Maybe someone with an experienced eye could offer a suggestion of what I'm looking at in this picture? I see a dark blue, with a bit of purple in the middle.

    My main concern is if it is good value. Assuming it is a legit alexandrite, is paying around $3000 for this ring a complete rip?
     

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