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Ruby Buying Process - How to?

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yehudi

Rough_Rock
Joined
Jan 2, 2007
Messages
15
I''ve lurked a while and had the socratic experience. The more I know about rubies, the less I know.

But, I''m not deterred. I''m on the market for an appx 1.5c ruby for a simple e-ring setting. I''m OK with buying heat-treated rock, but don''t want one that''s full-o-flux.

Can ya''ll recommend what the proper order of decisions and actions should be to make sure I get a great gem (and my money''s worth)?

Merci,
YM
 

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Richard Sherwood

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Sep 25, 2002
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4,924
First order of decision is research. Check out the websites, buying guides and tutorials of companies which deal in ruby. Josh Rioux (spelling?) posted a great list of companies expert in corundum (ruby and sapphire). Do a search and you'll probably come up with it.

Second course of action is to get a couple (2-3) experts working for you on what you want. If they think you're serious they'll put out the effort to find you a nice stone. It can be a real pleasure dealing with some of these guys.

Then eliminate the lesser, and go for the better. You'll end up with a beauty, I'm sure.
 

strmrdr

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Nov 1, 2003
Messages
23,295
this is my procedure id follow...

contact Gary @ www.diamondexpert.com and tell him what I want.
buy it
Have Richard Sherwood appraise it for insurance needs.

option 2 step 1 contact Wink Jones at www.winkjones.com and tell him what I want.
The rest of the steps are the same.
 

colorchange

Shiny_Rock
Trade
Joined
Jun 8, 2005
Messages
299

Hi Yehudi,


Clearly one of the first questions you will have is: Burmese or Madagascar (you may also find some good rubies from Vietnam but production is thin).
The prices are different even for comparable qualities (that’s unfortunate but it’s a fact), don’t buy some from Madagascar as Burmese.
If you go for Burmese, there is a difference in price between Mong Shu and Mogok. Only AGL will state which of these tracks the gems are from so you should ask someone like Richard tp help. Of course any gem certified as Burmese will be sold as from Mogok by some sellers.

The second is: Will you accept gems with very small amount of flux. It’s a majority of the good rubies on the market now. I personally don’t accept those, but you may very well. The price will go down very fast.


Then a few advises:
- You will NEED a certificate from a good lab, and there are not so many. You may trust AIGS, GIT and GRS in Thailand, AGTA, GIA and AGL in US, SSEF and Gubelin in Swiss, and the English and French national labs. Generally speaking non certified gems are flux filled whatever the seller is saying: An AIGS memo is cost approx USD 20 and will help selling A LOT. If a seller is telling he is sure it isn’t, ask him to get the gem certified himself you will avoid a loss of time.
- You MUST ask to be “allowed” to have the gem certified again and that if flux is mentioned all your cost should be refunded.
- Photos of rubies are incredibly difficult to take… the return policy should be good.

You might ask an appraiser for help in choosing or checking you didn’t overpay you gems. You may also find a very knowledgeable jeweller tell him you are going to have the gem set by him and ask him for help in choosing the ruby.


Good luck for your search.
 

strmrdr

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Nov 1, 2003
Messages
23,295
The problem with ruby is that there is way too many minefields and BS and fakes on the market that makes a diy approach on anything but the lower end stones very risky.
When you get into the better grades it is who you know that matters the most.
Which is a big reason Id use Wink and Gary besides being first rate people they are connected and know how to find the hens teeth in the market.
The Tucson gem show is coming up in feb and its Gary's home town so its a great time to set him hunting.

Then once they do their thing when it comes to skill and knowledge and having the right tools Richard Sherwood is the appraiser who tops my list for rubies.
Unless someone has a high interest in them it is too hard to keep up and most appraisers and most vendors don't because the demnd is fairly small compared to diamonds.
A top ruby can take years to find sometimes and using the help of the best people who have conections is the first step.
 

colorchange

Shiny_Rock
Trade
Joined
Jun 8, 2005
Messages
299
What you say is completely true if you are looking for a 3+ Ct very fine ruby.
Anyway, 1.5 Ct rubies are not so uncommon (I have bought 20 good rubies last month in the 1 to 2 Ct range), inc. 3 unheated, one presumably unheated, none flux filled or Be treated.
In these I would rate 6 as fine and 3 as very fine.
As you can see such rubies are available
When you get over 2 Ct things are getting tougher, while above 3 Ct the good find is really rare.

I think that if you know what kind of color and clarity you are looking for, and know which certificates to trust it might not be so hard.
 

LdyNghtWng

Rough_Rock
Joined
Sep 26, 2006
Messages
76
I have bought a few rubies over the past year, and they were harder to find than a diamond, but the dealer I worked with managed to find everything I wanted given a few months time on each. Color is everything in rubies. There was a high premium for a deep blood red stone. I saw a number of stones that were true reds, with a slight pinkish secondary hue that were actually prettier, and more feminine, than a classic pigeon blood red. I think you first have to decide what colour you are aiming for. I tend to like stones that are very red, with a slightly purplish body colour. I have friends that love a brighter, and less costly "candy" red. Lucky for them!

Honestly, I think for most stones it is hard to tell what mine they are from; you should go for colour not mine. If I had been set on Mogok, or even Burma, I would have overlooked some amazing stones. One of my rubies was said to be from Mogok, one from Burma, and the other a recut older stone from India, origin unknown, but could be Burmese. That one is on the dark side but the most amazing heartbreaking red I have ever seen.
 

yehudi

Rough_Rock
Joined
Jan 2, 2007
Messages
15
This is very helpful, guys. Thanks.

Based on your input, my self-assigned tasks are to study up more (just received Richard Wise''s book) and to look at as many gems as I can to find out what colors/clarity work best for us.

Then, we''ll start looking at those hard decisions.

Thanks again.
 

Wink

Ideal_Rock
Trade
Joined
May 3, 2001
Messages
7,357
Date: 1/2/2007 11:40:08 PM
Author: strmrdr
this is my procedure id follow...


contact Gary @ www.diamondexpert.com and tell him what I want.

buy it

Have Richard Sherwood appraise it for insurance needs.


option 2 step 1 contact Wink Jones at www.winkjones.com and tell him what I want.

The rest of the steps are the same.

Thank you for the kind words Storm.

While I do not consider myself to be a ruby expert I know something about them and I know great people who I do consider to be experts that I use as suppliers. I often find that with color you can not be an expert in all gems, so it is good to know someone who is an expert in each gem that you wish to deal with.

I greatly appreciate your comments and also Richard Sherwood''s.

Wink
 
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