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Under what conditions would you buy an uncerted diamond

Mong

Rough_Rock
Joined
Jan 27, 2019
Messages
14
Hi everyone !

I saw the thread « Diamond studs - certed or uncerted 3ctw » which made me curious : Under which size would you buy uncerted studs / other diamond jewelry ?

Personally, I think any jewelry which have smaller than 0.30 carat diamonds. But I haven’t been in the position to have a good deal with uncerted diamonds bigger than 0.30 ct so I’m not certain to stand on principle if a good deal present itself.
 

Karl_K

Ideal_Rock
Trade
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Aug 4, 2008
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8,960
Its not a good deal, if you don't know what you are buying.
I have bought stuff at pawn shops without reports but it has to be at a price that makes sense.
Loop them and see minor inclusions but eyeclean, ok they are probably at least si2. Color is really a wild guess but lets say my guess is the bottom end they could be is around K.
So how do they compare in price to a L I1 stone?
The setting I always assume scrap price for the metal or next to nothing unless I am pretty sure its truly an antique or something really special.
 

lovedogs

Ideal_Rock
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The only time I'd buy anything over .3ct uncerted would be from very well known vendors who carry stones like that (diamonds by Lauren, ID jewlery). Otherwise no way.
 

Karl_K

Ideal_Rock
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Also you have to know your market around here good deals are rare because there is a guy who goes around daily or some of them call him in when they have something and he buys them up to sell on ebay.
 

JPie

Ideal_Rock
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I buy uncerted diamonds in antique pieces frequently. They're generally on the small side of .3 ct or less each, though the CTW is more.

The idea of buying larger diamonds (1.0 ct +) with ideal cutting and perfect ASET holds little appeal to me aesthetically. Anyone with enough money can buy a gorgeous diamond from PS-recommended vendors, but I'm more interested in the history behind a piece of jewelry, its aesthetic, and the fact that many of these antique pieces can never be replicated without losing their quirky charms.

Different strokes for different folks! Who knows though - maybe I'll change my mind in the future.
 

Lovesparklesparle

Shiny_Rock
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Jun 9, 2017
Messages
489
I would if
- the vendor was reputable and trusted (I bought my upgrade uncerted - had it certed myself by ags and it came back better
- if the price was price was right and in line with the worst potential outcome of stats (ie by assuming it is many grades lower than what is described). Or it was so cheap it didn’t matter (very unlikely the seller doesn’t know the value of what they have)
- there was a solid return policy if I had it graded and the results varied too greatly
- combined with other factors, if I was buying and estate or antique diamond. All larger modern diamond s, especially over 1ct, should already be certified, and the owners would likely keep the evidence as it increases the diamonds value.
 

Demon

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Feb 16, 2009
Messages
575
A big risk for sure.
I'd add that who is selling the item makes a huge difference.
I agree. I've purchased several small colored diamonds from DBL among others. Reasonably priced and I trusted the vendors. I did get a GIA report with my little chameleon, and with my fancy intense green yellow. (They already had the reports, but I would have wanted them for the fact that the one was a chameleon and for the price on the other.) I still would have wanted them, but might not have made the purchase of those two as easily..
 

Rockdiamond

Ideal_Rock
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- if the price was price was right and in line with the worst potential outcome of stats (ie by assuming it is many grades lower than what is described).
Awesome point!!
Speaking of my experience buying diamonds wholesale.....
There's plenty of reasons a cutter will offer us diamonds over about 1ct sans GIA. or smaller FCD's
Here are a few that make sense, if it's a cutter offering it.
1) It's an immediately evident low clarity grade- ie obviously an I1 or worse ( much worse in the case of Pink, blue or other exotic colors)
2) The color is clearly nowhere near K or Fancy Light yellow. The neverland of "LMNOPQRSTUV" diamonds where the specific grade makes little difference and the price is cheap enough that the GIA report is more than a few% of the value.

In general- if it's a diamond with ostensible value, I always assume that the cutter dealer offering it has already submitted it to GIA, and was unhappy with the results. You may notice more than your fair share of AGSL reports with SI2 as the clarity grade- from sellers who offer primarily GIA. The reason is that there are times when AGSL gives a stone SI2 which GIA had given I1.

So when we are offered stones without reports, I grade the stone, and if I feel it's a G/SI1, a price it out as if it were an H/SI2
We never allow "strange dealers" into our office- and we don't buy off the street- so we're buying from folks we already know.
And even if someone we're not all that familiar with is offering us a diamond with GIA/AGSL, I'm super cautious. I strongly urge readers to do the same on costly stones......
 

distracts

Ideal_Rock
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Despite what advice I give, actually every diamond I've bought was uncerted... but all the ones that weren't accent stones for something else bought as part of a ring from a jeweler were antique diamonds, bought secondhand, for decent though not unbelievably good deals, had good return policies, and I took to get appraised. Even then, I was basing my purchasing decision off of "if this comes out several color grades and one or two clarity grades lower, would I be ok with it?" I recently bought a pair of antique diamonds. They were uncerted, advertised as about 1.1 ct each J-K VS2-Si1, and both the appraiser and the diamond cutter I visited today about getting one recut thought they were I-J VVS1 (excluding a few girdle chips), plus they weighed about 1.2 ct each (got them unmounted and weighed today - one was a bit over and one was a bit under). So that turned out quite well. Crossing my fingers that the one I want recut doesn't explode on the cutting wheel, lol.

BUT I think there is a big difference between someone buying an antique or vintage piece secondhand and someone buying new from a jeweler. AND I think there is a big difference between someone who is fairly knowledgeable about jewelry and experienced evaluating and buying jewelry getting uncerted stones and someone who doesn't have that knowledge and experience doing so.I didn't start buying 1+ ct diamonds - I started out small, then slowly moved up in size as I got more experience and grew more confident reading pictures. The place where I bought my diamond pair, I had previously bought and returned several less expensive pieces of jewelry so I had a grasp on how they edited their pictures, that the written evaluations were more accurate, and that they didn't clean a damn thing before they evaluated and listed them.

Knowing the diamond market and being able to evaluate diamonds on your own are skills like any other, and take education and time to develop. Most consumers - probably well over 99%, don't have those skills and should never buy uncerted diamonds.

I buy all vintage and antique and all uncerted but I'm also typically not spending thousands. In fact the most I've ever spent on an uncerted diamond was $600 for a 1.23 carat Old European cut.
um, I want that deal
 

dreamer_dachsie

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Dec 16, 2007
Messages
24,345
There was a time back in 2011-2012 when a bunch of PSers regularly sleuthed ebay for diamond deals. Most of us bought old cut diamonds without lab reports from private sellers or resale stores that did not specialize in diamonds. I bought many old cuts without lab reports during that time, including my beloved 1.89ct diamond. But I had a little bit of PS education under my belt :lol-2: I certainly wouldn't have tried it any other way!
 

kenny

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Apr 30, 2005
Messages
27,497
Never.
Absolutely never.

I worked hard for my money and and gamble with it.
I want to be as certain as possible of what I'm spending my bucks for.

I won't even gamble by buying a stone with a report that is not GIA or AGS ... or AGL if not a diamond.
 
Last edited:

Lovesparklesparle

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Jun 9, 2017
Messages
489
“Despite what advice I give, actually every diamond I've bought was uncerted”

Haha me too. Ironically every time has worked out amazing for me, except the one time I bought new from a retail shop lol.
 

Nikki1415

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
May 17, 2018
Messages
520
Most of mine are uncerted but I took the risk because the pros outweighed the cons. If I was buying from a Pricesoper, they would provide awesome photos/videos and you know it is most likely a quality stone even if it's uncerted. I've purchased from eBay and as long as the seller has good communication and feedback, I feel comfortable buying from them (plus eBay/paypal protection). Personally, I don't care if it's certed as long as my eyes love the diamond and I am getting a good deal. I think the most important thing is to go with what you are comfortable with and knowing the risks.
 

missy

Super_Ideal_Rock
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Jun 8, 2008
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29,933
It is a big risk.

Only if the price was so sweet and you really like the diamond and couldn't pass it up. With an uncerted diamond (unless you are an expert) you do not know what you are purchasing so you are in a way buying blind. Even if you are seeing it in person with your eyes unless you are an expert you are buying blind.

So if you love it and the price is amazing and you feel confident you are not getting cheated regarding what you are paying for what you are getting then I say go for it. Knowing it is a risk and not a small one unless the price is such that they are almost giving it away. And if that is the case that would make me even more suspicious.

Just know without a cert from a reputable company you just don't know if what you are getting is what you think you are getting and if the price is fair.

I will add the smaller the diamond the less important to me if it has a cert. But for a sizable diamond nope I wouldn't buy one without a cert.
 

rocksjust4me

Rough_Rock
Joined
Sep 21, 2014
Messages
62
It is a big risk.

Only if the price was so sweet and you really like the diamond and couldn't pass it up. With an uncerted diamond (unless you are an expert) you do not know what you are purchasing so you are in a way buying blind. Even if you are seeing it in person with your eyes unless you are an expert you are buying blind.

So if you love it and the price is amazing and you feel confident you are not getting cheated regarding what you are paying for what you are getting then I say go for it. Knowing it is a risk and not a small one unless the price is such that they are almost giving it away. And if that is the case that would make me even more suspicious.

Just know without a cert from a reputable company you just don't know if what you are getting is what you think you are getting and if the price is fair.

I will add the smaller the diamond the less important to me if it has a cert. But for a sizable diamond nope I wouldn't buy one without a cert.
i posted about the studs and i am still struggling even though I know i should probably pass. They do look good to me, untrained eye i agree with the F/G color grade when compared to my certed H. I did loupe them and I agree with the SI grade by the vendor. My concern is the cut. As I mentioned they do not measure their weight, they measure about what a 2.75ctw - 2.80ctw would weigh, but they are priced well below what a true 3.00ctw would cost. I wonder why the jeweler would not send them for grading if they could get more money with the cert. They are from a reputable PS vendor and i am being offered the ability to upgrade any time at full value. I can get ACA or CBI that measure the same for about $4000 more. I keep asking myself, are they good enough for me? I have other jewelry projects that i could apply that $4000 to and still have eye satisfying studs.
 

Nikki1415

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
May 17, 2018
Messages
520
i posted about the studs and i am still struggling even though I know i should probably pass. They do look good to me, untrained eye i agree with the F/G color grade when compared to my certed H. I did loupe them and I agree with the SI grade by the vendor. My concern is the cut. As I mentioned they do not measure their weight, they measure about what a 2.75ctw - 2.80ctw would weigh, but they are priced well below what a true 3.00ctw would cost. I wonder why the jeweler would not send them for grading if they could get more money with the cert. They are from a reputable PS vendor and i am being offered the ability to upgrade any time at full value. I can get ACA or CBI that measure the same for about $4000 more. I keep asking myself, are they good enough for me? I have other jewelry projects that i could apply that $4000 to and still have eye satisfying studs.
You can buy an ASET scope and see if the cut is decent. I think it's worth spending $50 for the scope so that you know what you are considering.
 

rocksjust4me

Rough_Rock
Joined
Sep 21, 2014
Messages
62
You can buy an ASET scope and see if the cut is decent. I think it's worth spending $50 for the scope so that you know what you are considering.
Great idea, that i never thought of. I have a loupe, but not an ASET scope, but i will order ASAP. Thank you!
 

Nikki1415

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
May 17, 2018
Messages
520
Great idea, that i never thought of. I have a loupe, but not an ASET scope, but i will order ASAP. Thank you!
No problem! I bought one as soon as I learned about it. I was told that the ASET scope is better/easier to use on mounted diamonds because the Ideal scope is in shades of red and you need the proper lighting.
 

distracts

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Oct 11, 2011
Messages
5,460
“Despite what advice I give, actually every diamond I've bought was uncerted”

Haha me too. Ironically every time has worked out amazing for me, except the one time I bought new from a retail shop lol.
Hah, yes. For me, everything not bought as part of a setting was an antique, bought from an individual or a store that doesn't usually sell jewelry. And as @kenny makes explicit - most of us are aware it is a gamble and accept the risks. I would never buy uncerted diamonds from a jeweler - if they had an uncerted diamond I was interested in, I would ask for it to be sent to GIA. Trying to get a good deal buying uncerted diamonds from a jeweler is like trying to make money gambling at a casino - it's set up so the house always wins. If you're trying to get a decent deal, the ONLY way to do it is to buy from someone who either does not know what they have or who is trying to get money for it fast, and neither of those things applies to jewelers. Also, since it is gambling - I always go into it with the knowledge that I may get burned and lose the money and even with the return policy confirmed in writing, I may not actually be able to return.

@rocksjust4me I would look on PS diamond search for diamonds of that carat weight with excellent HCA scores and see if you can make a matched pair from those. There are a LOT of diamonds cut better than your uncerted pair that aren't superideals with the superideal price premium. I would bet you can get a 2.7-2.9ish pair with an excellent HCA score for the same price as the uncerted pair. At that carat weight, I can almost guarantee those diamonds HAVE been sent to a lab and just came back badly enough that they think they can get more money without the paper.
 

Mong

Rough_Rock
Joined
Jan 27, 2019
Messages
14
Thank you all for your comments!

I have to say I didn’t thought at all that the lack of certification on a diamond from a diamond seller might signify that it was certed but selling it without certification will bring more money!

I thought stupidly that if the vendor is recommended, all of their stuff would but good...
 

missy

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Jun 8, 2008
Messages
29,933
Thank you all for your comments!

I have to say I didn’t thought at all that the lack of certification on a diamond from a diamond seller might signify that it was certed but selling it without certification will bring more money!

I thought stupidly that if the vendor is recommended, all of their stuff would but good...
You are not stupid but definitely do not assume that a vendor who is recommended here can be trusted completely. One must do their due diligence and weigh all the risks vs reward and options that are available.
 

Ceilimom

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Sep 5, 2018
Messages
139
Interesting topic, I had planned to sell my MRB diamond that is in a platinum setting with baguettes on Loupe Troop. When the ring was purchased in 1980 I didn't know about certificates GIA,EGL or any other grading organizations. The ring was appraised by Martin Fuller who has done appraisal work for the Smithsonian. The diamond 1.70 carat weight was graded as K SI2 with Good X's 3. The baguettes total weight was .70 . I was nervous that even with Martin Fuller's appraisal, well I didn't know how it would be received for sale at the price I was going to ask. So it will be interesting to see what you all have to say. Please be kind I have a miserable cold and I'm afraid my head might explode with any increase in pressure;(
 

Ceilimom

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Sep 5, 2018
Messages
139
Interesting topic, I had planned to sell my MRB diamond that is in a platinum setting with baguettes on Loupe Troop. When the ring was purchased in 1980 I didn't know about certificates GIA,EGL or any other grading organizations. The ring was appraised by Martin Fuller who has done appraisal work for the Smithsonian. The diamond 1.70 carat weight was graded as K SI2 with Good X's 3. The baguettes total weight was .70 . I was nervous that even with Martin Fuller's appraisal, well I didn't know how it would be received for sale at the price I was going to ask. So it will be interesting to see what you all have to say. Please be kind I have a miserable cold and I'm afraid my head might explode with any increase in pressure;(
The baguettes were graded as G VVS2.
 

Rockdiamond

Ideal_Rock
Trade
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Jan 7, 2009
Messages
8,028
@Ceilimom - may I ask - how is the diamond set?
If it’s in a prong setting, easily removed and reset, it might make sense to have a GIA report done.
There’s risks- Because the grade might not be exactly as predicted- but it could possibly get a better grade.
Most important- feel better!!!
 

Ceilimom

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Sep 5, 2018
Messages
139
@Ceilimom - may I ask - how is the diamond set?
If it’s in a prong setting, easily removed and reset, it might make sense to have a GIA report done.
There’s risks- Because the grade might not be exactly as predicted- but it could possibly get a better grade.
Most important- feel better!!!
It is prong set. I was afraid that the prongs would destroyed in the removal process. I had planned, if sold unset asking $5350. Again I based that price on reviewing multiple businesses mentioned on this site
 

rocksjust4me

Rough_Rock
Joined
Sep 21, 2014
Messages
62
Hah, yes. For me, everything not bought as part of a setting was an antique, bought from an individual or a store that doesn't usually sell jewelry. And as @kenny makes explicit - most of us are aware it is a gamble and accept the risks. I would never buy uncerted diamonds from a jeweler - if they had an uncerted diamond I was interested in, I would ask for it to be sent to GIA. Trying to get a good deal buying uncerted diamonds from a jeweler is like trying to make money gambling at a casino - it's set up so the house always wins. If you're trying to get a decent deal, the ONLY way to do it is to buy from someone who either does not know what they have or who is trying to get money for it fast, and neither of those things applies to jewelers. Also, since it is gambling - I always go into it with the knowledge that I may get burned and lose the money and even with the return policy confirmed in writing, I may not actually be able to return.

@rocksjust4me I would look on PS diamond search for diamonds of that carat weight with excellent HCA scores and see if you can make a matched pair from those. There are a LOT of diamonds cut better than your uncerted pair that aren't superideals with the superideal price premium. I would bet you can get a 2.7-2.9ish pair with an excellent HCA score for the same price as the uncerted pair. At that carat weight, I can almost guarantee those diamonds HAVE been sent to a lab and just came back badly enough that they think they can get more money without the paper.
@distracts
I will take a look. I am still looking for studs and strongly considering CBI or ACA’s, but your suggestion is worth taking a look. I did pass on the uncerted studs. The ASET Scopes showed too much light leakage, i would say they were Good Cut, which there is nothing wrong with that if that is the preference. For this kind of money i want to be confident in what i am buying.
 
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