Find your diamond
Find your jewelry
shape
carat
color
clarity

Should I care aboutClouds and Feathers in VS2 Stone?

Makingmagic

Rough_Rock
Joined
Sep 25, 2010
Messages
2
Hi guys, I am thinking about buying a 2 carat, G or H color stone off of bluenile. I have picked Ideal cut, polish, symmetry, and no fluorescence. However I notice that for both G and H color stones, the value for the same size carat goes up 10-20% as the number of inclusions go down. I really dont like anything that has crystals in it cause they show up as dark spots, but maybe I can live with feathers and clouds if they arent visible. So my question to you guys is, should i care about clouds and feathers if its on a vs2 stone? Thanks for your help guys!
 

kenny

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Apr 30, 2005
Messages
27,295
Makingmagic said:
Hi guys, I am thinking about buying a 2 carat, G or H color stone off of bluenile. I have picked Ideal cut, polish, symmetry, and no fluorescence. However I notice that for both G and H color stones, the value for the same size carat goes up 10-20% as the number of inclusions go down. I really dont like anything that has crystals in it cause they show up as dark spots, but maybe I can live with feathers and clouds if they arent visible. So my question to you guys is, should i care about clouds and feathers if its on a vs2 stone? Thanks for your help guys!
When possible I shy away from stones with feathers since feather is a nice word for crack.

That said I DO have diamonds with feathers.
But when shopping and narrowing it down I'd prefer to go for a stone without cracks.

I do hope that VS2 is from AGS or GIA, otherwise it may be lower than VS2 per GIA or AGS.
 

shihtzulover

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Jun 30, 2010
Messages
717
I'm pretty sure that most VS2s are completely eye-clean - I believe that you will find an occasional one that isn't, but that's the exception, and not the rule.

My boyfriend and I (we aren't officially engaged yet) chose a SI1 stone with a feather and clouds. I don't remember which is listed first (that is, I don't remember which is the grade-making inclusion), but I do know that it's eye-clean. I also read a lot about feathers, and from what I understand, they don't usually cause a durability risk until the diamond is in the 'I' clarity range (or just maybe the SI2 category, but this is apparently really rare). I've also been told that feathers are good as far as eye-cleanliness is concerned, since they are not dark-colored inclusions, and therefore tend to blend in with the rest of the diamond more.

Here is a link about feathers and the durability risk that they pose. It was very informative for me. : https://www.pricescope.com/journal/diamond_feather_inclusions_durability_risk

Happy shopping, and good luck! :)
 

kenny

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Apr 30, 2005
Messages
27,295
Keep in mind the author and anyone in the industry has to move ALL their inventory, including the ones with feathers.
 

John Pollard

Ideal_Rock
Trade
Joined
May 1, 2008
Messages
3,508
A VS feather won't be a concern if graded by a top lab. For that matter, even in lower clarities, finished diamonds are subjected to so much pressure and friction in the manufacturing process that they turn red-hot on the polishing wheel. Normal wear won't come close to what they've already been through... With that said, every diamond is different and it's always good to check the particulars to verify that all is well, especially as you go lower in clarity.

More important than feather warnings, I encourage consumers to remember that every diamond has cleavage planes as part of its crystal structure. Although they are the hardest natural substance, a knock the wrong way, particularly at the girdle, can cause a diamond to chip along an internal octahedral plane. This goes for any diamond. That's why having a good insurance policy is important.

kenny said:
Keep in mind the author and anyone in the industry has to move ALL their inventory, including the ones with feathers.
This is true and one can definitely find dubious goods out there. But some companies exercise 100% control over their inventory. If feathers posed such a significant risk you would see all such diamonds disallowed by the elite brands and sold through secondary channels - just as other diamonds rejected for durability (or any other) issues are.

IMG_0297-640.jpg
 

bgray

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Jul 28, 2007
Messages
1,960
Thanks John Pollard-that was extremely enlightening and helpful.
 

John Pollard

Ideal_Rock
Trade
Joined
May 1, 2008
Messages
3,508
bgray said:
Thanks John Pollard-that was extremely enlightening and helpful.
You're quite welcome. For further elaboration/insight I think the article shihtzulover linked, above, is a good resource.

(PS: Kenny, I don't think the author - Erika of PS - or the appraisers who contributed to the article sell diamonds.)
 

kenny

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Apr 30, 2005
Messages
27,295
My brain works differently than some.
Sure people who think black and white, and absolute categories of safe and unsafe must be unconcerned with feathers.

Granted, even a flawless diamond can fracture if the impact was in just the right location.
Also granted, polished diamonds with feathers endured enormous stress/heat during polishing without exploding. (though not the impact type of stress right at the girdle.)
Granted, some feathers are less of a concern than others; the size, nature and location of the feather is significant.

Still a feather is a crack, "healed" or not, reaching the surface, or not.
A crack is still a crack and it does nothing to make the diamond stronger and more chip-resistant, but it may do the opposite.

If you set up a test in which 100 polished flawless diamonds and 100 polished feathered diamond were impacted at the point most likely to result in a chip I'd think the ones with feathers that happen to be at that most-vulnerable location would be more likely to chip, or chip from a blow of even lower force than the flawless ones.

Anyone want to test this? :bigsmile:

I just can't wrap my head around the statement that if they made it through the polishing process flawless and feathered diamonds have identical mechanical integrity - when it comes to surviving impact at the girdle.
I think it is reasonable that there is a difference.
Whether that difference is enough to be concerned with is up to each person to decide, but I do not think it is subversive of me to mention the issue especially when it is the topic of the OP.
People really get their panties in a wad over this one.

Every time I see a sad poster post pics of their chipped diamond I want to look at the report to see whether there was a feather there.

That said, I have bought diamonds with feathers (VS2 and above per GIA or AGS).
So even though I do not like feathers it is a case by case thing.
If there was another otherwise-identical green diamond or Octavia at the time that did not have feathers I would have bought those instead.
 

Stone-cold11

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Sep 9, 2008
Messages
14,069
2 things to note is which lab graded the stone and is the feather the grade setting inclusion.

GIA only note a feather is a feather if it breaks the surface, else it is plotted as an included crystal.

Also, GIA will list a feather first, the grade setting inclusion, even if it is the same order as an internal inclusion. For example, in a stone has a cloud and feather at the VS2 level, the feather will be named first. If it is named after the cloud in a VS2 stone, then it will be a less significant inclusion, VS1 or better clarity grade.

Not sure of other labs, AGS probably follows the same convention?
 

Stone-cold11

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Sep 9, 2008
Messages
14,069
Probably no need as it is a branded stone, not at the edge where there is a chance of impact resulting crack propagation of the feather.

Also as John has explained,
John Pollard said:
But some companies exercise 100% control over their inventory. If feathers posed such a significant risk you would see all such diamonds disallowed by the elite brands and sold through secondary channels - just as other diamonds rejected for durability (or any other) issues are.
Ask Jon to double check if you are still worried
 

kenny

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Apr 30, 2005
Messages
27,295
Matthewmon said:
should I be worried about the feather in this diamond? thanks!

http://www.goodoldgold.com/diamond/7368/
Hmm Solasfera with one of the cheaper (no clarity plots) grading reports, aka GIA Diamond Dossier?
Shame shame shame on Solasfera.

If I owned a premium brand, and charged premium prices, I'd would not cheap out to save $25 on a cheaper lab report. :angryfire:

-1 for Solasfera. :nono:
 

Matthewmon

Rough_Rock
Joined
Jun 28, 2010
Messages
80
there is an arrow pointing to it in the microscopic but I don't really see anything....
 

PCMusicGuy

Rough_Rock
Joined
Mar 29, 2011
Messages
26
For what its worth, I recently passed on a VS1 princess stone I went view in person at WhiteFlash because the feather was near the corner almost on the girdle. The representative told me he thinks I made the right call. To me, a feather is an issue if it is anywhere close to the area on the diamond where metal touches it.
 

Tom Gelb

Shiny_Rock
Trade
Joined
Feb 18, 2010
Messages
107
Stone-cold11|1285527854|2720975 said:
.

Also, GIA will list a feather first, the grade setting inclusion, even if it is the same order as an internal inclusion. For example, in a stone has a cloud and feather at the VS2 level, the feather will be named first. If it is named after the cloud in a VS2 stone, then it will be a less significant inclusion, VS1 or better clarity grade.
Hello Stone,

Are you absolutely sure this is the case? When I worked at the GIA grading lab we were taught to put the internal inclusion first, and then the surface reaching inclusion. I had pretty much stopping clarity grading by the early 2000's so the policy may have changed since. The reasoning went that if, for example, you had a stone with a VS2 feather and a VS2 crystal, and you put feather first in the key to symbols that would indicate to the client (often a manufacturer) that the crystal is a better clarity than the feather, and they might try to reduce or remove the feather to get a better clarity.

I realize that this is deep into grading lab minutiae, but I think it could be important in certain instances.
 

yssie

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Aug 14, 2009
Messages
20,044
Tom Gelb|1306517038|2931763 said:
Stone-cold11|1285527854|2720975 said:
.

Also, GIA will list a feather first, the grade setting inclusion, even if it is the same order as an internal inclusion. For example, in a stone has a cloud and feather at the VS2 level, the feather will be named first. If it is named after the cloud in a VS2 stone, then it will be a less significant inclusion, VS1 or better clarity grade.
Hello Stone,

Are you absolutely sure this is the case? When I worked at the GIA grading lab we were taught to put the internal inclusion first, and then the surface reaching inclusion. I had pretty much stopping clarity grading by the early 2000's so the policy may have changed since. The reasoning went that if, for example, you had a stone with a VS2 feather and a VS2 crystal, and you put feather first in the key to symbols that would indicate to the client (often a manufacturer) that the crystal is a better clarity than the feather, and they might try to reduce or remove the feather to get a better clarity.

I realize that this is deep into grading lab minutiae, but I think it could be important in certain instances.

I just called the GIA labs to clarify this:

1. Right now the "grade-setting" worst inclusion is listed first, and inclusions are listed from most to least severe through the loupe

2. Right now clarity grading is strictly through the 10x loupe, no naked-eye inspections anywhere in the process. The inclusion plot is just a road map - tells you nothing about real-world severity or 'strength of visibility' of inclusions - just where they are in the stone, or in the case of feathers how far they stretch, etc.


ETA: asked AGS too, same deal
 

pyramid

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Nov 10, 2002
Messages
4,607
Old, old thread but only reading it now. How can an internal feather be plotted as a crystal, I don't understand this as they are of different shapes? Can one of the appraisers comment on this for me please?





Stone-cold11|1285527854|2720975 said:
2 things to note is which lab graded the stone and is the feather the grade setting inclusion.

GIA only note a feather is a feather if it breaks the surface, else it is plotted as an included crystal.

Also, GIA will list a feather first, the grade setting inclusion, even if it is the same order as an internal inclusion. For example, in a stone has a cloud and feather at the VS2 level, the feather will be named first. If it is named after the cloud in a VS2 stone, then it will be a less significant inclusion, VS1 or better clarity grade.

Not sure of other labs, AGS probably follows the same convention?
 

pyramid

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Nov 10, 2002
Messages
4,607
I also wanted to share, when I was worried about feathers, I remember writing on either this forum or another forum about it, and there was a poster there from Mexico who worked in the aerospace industry, he built or developed things for rockets but during his time off he was casting and making very patterned rings with cz's and other stones (must have been on the other forum), this was back in the nineties.

I remember saying about a feather being a crack and he told me not to think of it like a crack in a thin pane of glass but like a fissure in a sphere as this was more like the body of a diamond and there was far less risk of it becoming worse as a crack would.
 

LLJsmom

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Oct 24, 2012
Messages
9,214
Such an interesting thread. I have a VS1 that has a feather at the girdle. GIA. Hmmm. I think my take away is insurance is good. Lol!
 
Be a part of the community It's free, join today!

Need Something Special?

Get a quote from multiple trusted and vetted jewelers.

Holloway Cut Advisor



Diamond Eye Candy

Click to view full-size image.
Top