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Weird inclusions in spinel - is this synthetic?

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TravelingGal

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I have no idea, but it reminds me of grape shasta!!!
 

cushioncutnut

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Date: 3/23/2009 10:31:32 PM
Author: TravelingGal
I have no idea, but it reminds me of grape shasta!!!
BURP!! OH excuse me!!
 

chrono

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It would be suspect to me too. I''ve seen fractures, feathers and the like but not bubbles like that.
 

FrekeChild

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Yeah. Weird!!!
 

TravelingGal

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Date: 3/23/2009 10:59:11 PM
Author: Chrono
It would be suspect to me too. I''ve seen fractures, feathers and the like but not bubbles like that.
Seriously, that stone looks like it has so much gas that it''s going to f*rt on someone''s finger!
 

chrono

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Date: 3/23/2009 11:08:15 PM
Author: TravelingGal


Date: 3/23/2009 10:59:11 PM
Author: Chrono
It would be suspect to me too. I've seen fractures, feathers and the like but not bubbles like that.
Seriously, that stone looks like it has so much gas that it's going to f*rt on someone's finger!
May it just needs some pepto bismol or Gas-X?
 

zeolite

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If they are actually bubbles, that would be a sign of a synthetic. But if they are negative crystals (voids in the shape of a crystal, with flat faces), or actual crystals of a widely different refractive index, they would show like that.

They actually look quite typical of natural inclusions specific to spinel, but these are quite large. Buyers usually don''t see these inclusions, but cutters do, because they have cut them out. I have a Burmese native cut spinel with inclusions like this. I''m going to have to take them out.
 

glitterata

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Okay, this description--of a spinel from the same seller--made me laugh and laugh. My DH asked why I was laughing so much. I showed him, and now he can't stop chuckling either:

Somebody give this spinel some Xanax...

What do you think it's worried about? People noticing the big inclusion in its belly?
 

oldmancoyote

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Is it just me or does the inclusion look like a woman''s figure with a ruched dress? Perhaps she''s kind of nervous being trapped in a stone.
 

T L

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Date: 3/24/2009 4:53:49 AM
Author: oldmancoyote
Is it just me or does the inclusion look like a woman''s figure with a ruched dress? Perhaps she''s kind of nervous being trapped in a stone.
It kind of reminds me of Egyptian queen Nefertitti (sp?) riding a horse.
 

T L

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Date: 3/23/2009 11:23:49 PM
Author: zeolite
If they are actually bubbles, that would be a sign of a synthetic. But if they are negative crystals (voids in the shape of a crystal, with flat faces), or actual crystals of a widely different refractive index, they would show like that.

They actually look quite typical of natural inclusions specific to spinel, but these are quite large. Buyers usually don't see these inclusions, but cutters do, because they have cut them out. I have a Burmese native cut spinel with inclusions like this. I'm going to have to take them out.
The reason I ask is because I recently purchased what was advertised as a Sri Lankan lavender spinel on ebay (yes I know), and it has three inclusions I can see with my loupe. One is a bubble such as the ones in the picture, and the other are the negative crystals (they have flat sides to them). The inclusions are visible with a 10x loupe. I was really pleased with my purchase, and I plan on purchasing one more from this seller, and to be on the lookout for other gems. I should take it to a gemologist, but I do see inclusions in there, and I just want to make sure it's capiche. The toolhaus.org feedback is very good, and no one has complained of synthetics. I'm leary of buying anything without inclusions though.

Here's a picture, and I've circled the main negative crystal inclusions, although they are blurry. They have flat sides to them. There is also one tiny bubble inclusion. I was very impressed with the color, cut, sparkle, for what I paid, so I just want to make sure it's "not too good to be true" which it often is on ebay. I also avoid red spinel on ebay like the plague since I read the synthetics are looking like and mimicing the real thing very well. I also posted another picture of it sitting in a setting at the bottom of this page.

https://www.pricescope.com/community/threads/my-malayas-with-18k-and-14k-rose-gold-logrs.110662/

ETA: I just got a response from Richard Hughes on the bubble inclusions in the ebay photo and he said the following:

Those are rounded crystals of what I think is apatite. Quite common in natural spinel. Refer to the PhotoAtlas to get the specific ID. They are pictured in there.


TLLavenderspinel.JPG
 

glitterata

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What about this one, from the same seller? It has those little bubbles, but it also has patches of bright red scattered in with the pink. Is it dyed, or what would cause that?
 

coatimundi_org

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Date: 3/23/2009 10:22:56 PM
Author:tourmaline_lover
http://cgi.ebay.com/3-82ct-Stunning-Oval-Natural-Purplish-Pink-Spinel-NR_W0QQitemZ330312237058


I''ve never seen so many bubbles in a stone before. Looks suspect. What do you gemologists think? I''m not buying it, but just ran across it and thought it was bizarre.
Interesting. They remind me of rounded apatite crystals that I''ve seen in Hessonite garnet--seen some that are chock full of them.

If they are gas bubbles, then that would indicate that this stone is a flame fusion synthetic, and it just doesn''t look like a flame fusion synthetic to me.

My guess is natural.
 

Harriet

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Glitterata,
Someone asked the same question at the place where Dick Hughes ID-ed the apatite inclusions. I''ll keep you posted if anyone answers.
 

LD

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I''ve seen gas bubbles in Rubies (normally 2 or 3 - not a whole fizzy drink worth) that are indicative of lead fracture filling. I have no idea whether the same process is used in Spinel or not though.
 

glitterata

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Thanks, Harriet! Would you feel comfortable giving me a hint as to what I could google to find the other discussion?
 

Harriet

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Date: 3/24/2009 5:57:16 PM
Author: glitterata
Thanks, Harriet! Would you feel comfortable giving me a hint as to what I could google to find the other discussion?
Will I get a lesson on collecting estate jewellery? I''m in NYC too.
 

glitterata

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Of course! I doubt there''s anything I could teach you, but I would be delighted to share anything I know!

Want to go to this together in July?
 

Harriet

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YES! I honestly don''t know much about antique jewellery, except that mourning jewellery scares me. Oh, you might be interested in bubble inclusions in spinel.
 

chrono

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I know sometimes there are bubbles but I''ve not seen bubbles that large. Not to mention most cutters would but those out because they know it''ll never sell. If I see bubble scattered across the entire stone, I''d be suspcious, but less so if there''s only 1 or 2, but I''d still be extremely puzzled.

TL,
If you go to Jeff White''s gallery with the square red spinel of about 1 ct, you will also see that it has a few very small bubble. Note that they are VERY small and few.
 

T L

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Date: 3/24/2009 11:02:07 PM
Author: Chrono
I know sometimes there are bubbles but I''ve not seen bubbles that large. Not to mention most cutters would but those out because they know it''ll never sell. If I see bubble scattered across the entire stone, I''d be suspcious, but less so if there''s only 1 or 2, but I''d still be extremely puzzled.

TL,
If you go to Jeff White''s gallery with the square red spinel of about 1 ct, you will also see that it has a few very small bubble. Note that they are VERY small and few.
Thanks Chrono, after louping my stone, I found only two very very small bubbles, and the other inclusions looked like crystals embedded in the stone. You cannot see them with the naked eye. I actually think this ebay spinel is kind of neat from a gemological perspective, if it were natural. It''s certainly cheap enough to purchase for study.
 

Lee Little

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Hi Everybody,
I have been away from this forum for awhile but popped in and saw this ''bubbly'' Spinel. Those look like Apatite crystals, most likely a natural spinel. Cool specimen. Best regards, Lee
 

cofor

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Anyone here bidding for it? I might if no one else is, as I would love to take some photomicrographs from it.
 

Rockit

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Great thread... I started out chuckling at the burpy Cherry Soda Gem, and now, I''ve learned something new about natural spinel. Thanks.
 

T L

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Date: 3/25/2009 3:06:30 PM
Author: cofor
Anyone here bidding for it? I might if no one else is, as I would love to take some photomicrographs from it.
I think bidding is over for this one, but I believe he has another "bubbly" spinel up for auction. For $21.50 (the winning bid), it certainly is worth it to study those inclusions.
 

chrono

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Date: 3/25/2009 1:34:09 PM
Author: Lee Little
Hi Everybody,
I have been away from this forum for awhile but popped in and saw this 'bubbly' Spinel. Those look like Apatite crystals, most likely a natural spinel. Cool specimen. Best regards, Lee
That's awesome. It'll be nice to have one as an interesting specimen stone.
 

cofor

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Got me one.. called: 4.38ct Screaming Oval Natural Purple Pink Spinel. Seems to have some interesting inclusions too.
 
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