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Preventing diamond switching

Tuxtax

Rough_Rock
Joined
Sep 13, 2020
Messages
28
I just finally chose my diamond, and now I have to find a setting at a different jeweler.

Now, my question is this... if I know the exact mapping of all the inclusions in my diamond, then that is an absolutely secure and most certain way of knowing that it is my diamond?

I found out that theoretically, anyone can rub off the GIA number inscribed on the girdle.

I am planning to buy a microscope with a camera so that I can take a picture of all the inclusions in my diamond with the exact positions of all the inclusions. There is something called Dino Lite in Amazon for around $250 that I am planning to purchase.

This is the ultimate way to know a 100 percent that the diamond is yours?

I am a little paranoid since I spent the last three months trying to find my diamond, and it is an expensive F, VS2, Excellent, 1.80 carat diamond.

I know some people will say that diamond switching is very rare, and it probably occurs only 1 percent of the time, but it does happen from time to time.

Also, I am trying to find a setting now, and I found a design for an engagement ring that I really like, but I am not sure about the business since it is owned and run by 3 people, and they have been in business for only 12 years. They have very good reviews in Yelp and other sites but that is about all they have.

I will appreciate any opinions from everyone. Thanks.
 

Tuxtax

Rough_Rock
Joined
Sep 13, 2020
Messages
28
That's a good way to put it, but then I found two news articles online where a local jewelry store was accused of diamond switching.

In general, getting a detailed map of the diamond inclusions is the most certain way to identify your diamond?
 

whitewave

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Feb 29, 2012
Messages
10,261
Ok, so a few things:

Why can’t where you bought the diamond set the stone?

Where do you live? (What country)

Why don’t you trust the jeweler who will set?

Should we recommend a trusted vendor who would set the stone?
 

MillieLou

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Feb 27, 2020
Messages
170
Recognition is one thing, but proving that this was the stone you handed in is another. (Proof of ownership of a stone is not proof you gave it in on that particular day). Without an independent appraiser present at handover and pickup, I'm not sure there is anything that would stand up in court. So, it comes back to trust and reputation.

All the recognition methods suggested are useful to prevent an accidental mix-up which can happen, but not a malicious switch.
 

seaurchin

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Nov 2, 2012
Messages
1,488
We had a similar discussion a little while back. If it helps:

 

Tuxtax

Rough_Rock
Joined
Sep 13, 2020
Messages
28
The jeweler I bought the diamond from only has two basic settings to choose from. I thought it was strange that a jeweler who sells diamonds does not also sell designer name settings.

I live in MA, and I tend to trust large stores with a long history because if they are able to grow large then that means the community around them trusted them and supported them.

Actually, I think I trust most jewelry stores as long as I have a certain way to identify my diamond so that I get the extra assurance that I received back my diamond. I don't think I will ever be in a situation where I need to go to court and accuse anyone.
 

Daisys and Diamonds

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Apr 30, 2019
Messages
7,003
Well what ever gives you peace of mind
but if a jewler did this in my country his or her shop would be out of bussiness so fast ive just never ever heard of it happening here
everyone knows everyone and with the internet now days a professional reputation would be in tatters
 

123ducklings

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Jun 10, 2020
Messages
538
Are you afraid of an 12 year old established business, on which the livelihood of three people and their families rely, potentially committing organized crime for a sub 2.0 carat F color diamond?
The concensus right now on PS seems to be “you’re crazy, no jeweler would switch a diamond” but this actually isn’t that uncommon. It’s happened to PS-ers. It happened to a woman I know personally, at a highly reputable small local jeweler she and her family had used for YEARS. Unfortunately sometimes people fall on hard times and make bad decisions out of desperation, jewelers aren’t immune to this.

Edit: Just for context, I am writing from a US perspective.
 

LightBright

Brilliant_Rock
Premium
Joined
Mar 11, 2013
Messages
823
What kind of setting are you looking for? Can you use a trusted jeweler from some of the recommendations here, who would have secure insured shipping? Mark Morrell is in Massachusetts, you could consider him.

Another idea is to accompany the diamond to your preferred local jeweler for any measurements they need, then take it home with you. Then bring it back for any adjustments in wax, then personally watch them set it. You could explain that the diamond is a “family heirloom”.

It would be even easier if your selected jeweler would put your diamond under a microscope with you so you could talk about identifying marks together, then confirm the same marks when you pick up the set stone (see Kaycee’s comment in the post on this same subject Linked above).

The scenario of switching is not far fetched. I’ve heard it here on PS, Eg permanent suspicion that diamonds and other gems have been switched during polishing or setting.
 
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Bron357

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Jan 22, 2014
Messages
4,699
Easiest way is to request a Job receipt from the jeweller when you submit your diamond for setting ie Setting 1.80 carat diamond GIA inscribed xxxxxxxxx into setting xyz - cost $xxxx.
If you don’t get back your exact diamond, that’s theft, that a crime with a jail term.
It would be extremely unlikely that anyone would remove a GIA inscription and even less likely that anyone would put a fake one onto a diamond (requires specialised equipment).
So no need to worry.
 

seaurchin

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Nov 2, 2012
Messages
1,488
Also, as I mentioned elsewhere, I would trust an established, highly regarded jeweler but the jeweler switching diamonds or otherwise stealing is NOT the only thing that can go wrong.

For ex., when I almost dropped off an expensive piece for re-sizing, the jeweler (who was very well regarded) was not there and I had no idea who the person at the counter was. I could not bring myself to hand my diamond ring over to her with no proof or recourse if I didn't get it back. A jewelry store could also be broken into (as could their safe), or other scenarios I could think of.

Where I used to live, the jeweler had a camera mounted on his counter and he'd snap a close-up, high quality photo of each piece when you dropped it off. He'd keep one copy and the customer would get the other copy on their pickup ticket. That protected the customer AND him. After all, shady people can be on either side of that counter and the jeweler usually has a lot more to lose than a customer does. With the low cost of good cameras these days, I'm surprised this isn't standard.
 
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flyingpig

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Nov 7, 2015
Messages
2,547
The concensus right now on PS seems to be “you’re crazy, no jeweler would switch a diamond”
I do not know how you came up with this conclusion from my post. It is a logical question that the OP should ask herself.
If her answer is yes, she should look for another one she can truly trust.
 
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123ducklings

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Jun 10, 2020
Messages
538
I do not know how you came up with this conclusion from my post. It is a logical question that the OP should ask herself.
If her answer is yes, she should look for another one she can truly trust.
Sorry, initially I quoted your post and included a more direct response to it, but changed my comment to give a more general answer as I felt what I ended up typing was most relevant to the thread. Perhaps I should have removed your quote.
 

Lookinagain

Brilliant_Rock
Premium
Joined
May 15, 2014
Messages
1,078
The jeweler I bought the diamond from only has two basic settings to choose from. I thought it was strange that a jeweler who sells diamonds does not also sell designer name settings.

I live in MA,
Well this surprises me. Not sure where in MA you live, but I live in MA too and I've never seen a jeweler who sells only two basic ( I assume you mean simple solitaire) settings. Of course there are tons of small jewelers out there so maybe that is where you are buying your stone but MA also has many well established jewelers and you say you tend to trust large stores with a long history because if they are able to grow large then that means the community around them trusted them and supported them.

So if you go to a large store (please not Kay's or Jareds) and request the type of receipt @Bron357 describes, I would think you would be comfortable about leaving your stone.
 

Ceilimom

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Sep 5, 2018
Messages
326
We had a similar discussion a little while back. If it helps:

I dealt with a local jeweler who was the penultimate nightmare. This jeweler advertises heavily on radio, magazine and in newspapers, everyone in this area has heard of them, thereby assuming they're reputable and will give you a great deal, they treat you like"family". They agreed to make a setting with a full carat halo, specified diamond quality, the setting was sloppily made, the diamond carat weight was off by half and the quality of the diamonds were were a much lower quality. When I caught these errors, I was told ,"I must have forgot what we agreed upon".
As to diamond swapping one of the well known D.C. jewelers was caught swapping out diamonds on a number of clients diamond jewelry. Huge court case on that one.
 

bling_dream19

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Feb 21, 2019
Messages
2,228
I dealt with a local jeweler who was the penultimate nightmare. This jeweler advertises heavily on radio, magazine and in newspapers, everyone in this area has heard of them, thereby assuming they're reputable and will give you a great deal, they treat you like"family". They agreed to make a setting with a full carat halo, specified diamond quality, the setting was sloppily made, the diamond carat weight was off by half and the quality of the diamonds were were a much lower quality. When I caught these errors, I was told ,"I must have forgot what we agreed upon".
As to diamond swapping one of the well known D.C. jewelers was caught swapping out diamonds on a number of clients diamond jewelry. Huge court case on that one.
Scary and awful!
 

denverappraiser

Ideal_Rock
Trade
Joined
Jul 21, 2004
Messages
8,838
How will a dinolite photo prevent someone from stealing your diamond? I presume the goal here is to build a case that will hold up in court and you'll get restitution if someone steals it. Fat chance. A photo by you, even if it was taken with a good camera, would never hold up in court, and any thief posing as a jeweler would know this.

How about this?: Hire an appraiser who knows what they're doing to document it FIRST. Use that document to buy an insurance policy before you even start. That too won't stop a thief, but it does make it someone else's problem. A 'jeweler' stealing your diamond is a covered loss on pretty much every policy.

By the way, it's a lot harder than most people think to 'rub off' a girdle inscription. It is possible, and the tools aren't even crazy rare, unlike the tools to ADD a counterfeit inscription, but even at that I can't think of a single jeweler who has the equipment and the skills, much less the temperament to do this.
 

Wink

Ideal_Rock
Trade
Joined
May 3, 2001
Messages
7,516
Denverappraiser gives excellent advice. For those of you working with a local jeweler, here is what I recommend.

When I have someone who is concerned and is a local client, I sit down with them, put the diamond in the microscope and then show them the characteristics that match to the diamond grading report. I take a picture through the scope if asked, and when the diamond is mounted, help the buyer find those identifying characteristics again.

Wink
 

LilAlex

Brilliant_Rock
Premium
Joined
Mar 3, 2018
Messages
666
Imo, all you can do is prove it to yourself. But in most instances you have no way of proving that that is the stone you dropped off. I mean you can wave a GIA report around and say "I used to own this diamond!" but I'm not sure how that really helps. I bet people work this scam in reverse, too.

I have only taken in stones that already had a report and I bring that with the stone and then the trusted vendor writes the report number on the work order.
 

AllAboardTheBlingTrain

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Apr 22, 2020
Messages
828
I’m sure the chances of actually having someone switch your diamond on you are very low, but yes, it does happen.

You have 2 ways of mitigating as far as I can see - ask the jeweler to show you your diamond’s GIA inscription and help you map your inclusions through the loupe, and mention those things on the take-in paperwork (so it should say “diamond GIA no. XXXXX). This is something that any honest and trustworthy jeweler ought to be happy to do, I think. You can let them know that you want your diamond to be set in a way that the GIA inscription is visible once mounted, which I think should be doable unless it’s a bezel setting. Then just verify your diamond when you pick it up before you leave the store.

The other option of course is to not leave the diamond in their possession, but to ask them to work off of measurements, and to set the stone in front of you. This is possible, but only if their bench is in-house, and you run the risk of offending your jeweler and them possibly declining to take on your project. You’ll have to work on how to communicate it to them in a way that doesn’t sound accusatory or distrustful or they may not want to work with you. My jeweler (not in the US) will do this for his clients if their stones are very high value as a courtesy.
 
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denverappraiser

Ideal_Rock
Trade
Joined
Jul 21, 2004
Messages
8,838
The ‘let me look over your shoulder while you do delicate work’ plan often doesn’t fly. In most stores, even those with a shop on site, the shop is isolated from the showroom for reasons of noise, dirt, and security. It’s normally a violation of a typical insurance policy to have a customer back there. Secondarily, most craftsmen (and women) don’t do their best work with some nervous nelly looking over their shoulder. Do you?

Asking for good take in and pick up procedures is a good plan but don’t be surprised if they decline this one.
 

seaurchin

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Nov 2, 2012
Messages
1,488
I wonder how much more business a jeweler would get if they DID do the counter-mounted camera with a photo on the receipt thing with intake on ALL jewelry, and advertised it. It certainly seems to be something customers would like.

I really don't know how anyone can stand it anyway, though. Customers are horrifying!
 
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