Find your diamond
Find your jewelry
shape
carat
color
clarity

What if the appraiser doesn''t see all the inclusions on the GIA cert?

Status
Not open for further replies. Please create a new topic or request for this thread to be opened.

dianne

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Feb 18, 2007
Messages
1,052
I have read the postings debating whether to give the diamond certificate to the independent appraiser prior to them doing the appraisal. As I recall, there were strong feelings from both sides regarding if you should or shouldn''t. I am not trying to dig up the old debate so let me tell you what I did.

I gave the cert to the appraiser up front because she asked for it. I told her I didn''t offer it to her because I didn''t think she would want it to influence her. Her response was that some certs were fake and she must see if it was authentic.
Ok... I admit I thought that was strange because I wanted the diamond appraised, regardless. Even if she wanted to confirm the authenticity I felt she could have done that after her appraisal, but this was my first actual "I''m-gonna-pay-for-it" appraisal experience and I didn''t know what the process was like. Of course, there may be other reasons she did this...I just don''t know what they are.

Well, all I had was a copy of the certificate from the seller which did not clearly show all the inclusions because they were so tiny and simply didn''t copy well. In fact, I didn''t even know about some of the inclusions until I got the original cert the next week. Anyway, the appraiser admitted she didn''t see all the inclusions that were shown on the copy. I even followed her out of her office to go to another area to look at the diamond with a different scope. She did show me one of the inclusions but had the scope magnified higher than 10X, which she may have done to help me see it easier. It was evident that this inclusion was noted on the cert so I was sure the diamond matched the cert. She mentioned she saw a black inclusion that wasn''t even listed on the certificate but didn''t show that one to me. (I know, I should have asked to see it)

When I received the final appraisal in the mail a week later, her diagram matched only a few of the inclusions listed on the certificate copy...meaning the additional inclusions that could not be seen on the copy were not there, the inclusions she admitted she could not see were not there (rightfully so), but there was no additional black inclusion that she said was there, either. Let me tell you, I have a 10X loupe and I am no expert but I have stared at that stone just trying to see the inclusions listed on the cert and I don''t see them. I keep trying so I will have a fingerprint to identify my stone. I see nothing --and I can''t help but think I would notice a black inclusion.

So...is it normal for an appraiser to not see the inclusions listed on the certificate? If she saw a black inclusion shouldn''t she have indicated it on the diagram? She appraised the diamond as VS2 (same as the GIA cert) and I would think a black inclusion may have made the clarity go down. True?

I''m sure I should have asked her to spend more time with me but I can''t help but feel that this appraisal may not have been given the attention that I was hoping for.
 

diagem

Ideal_Rock
Trade
Joined
Oct 21, 2004
Messages
4,929
Date: 2/21/2007 11:08:57 PM
Author:dianne
I have read the postings debating whether to give the diamond certificate to the independent appraiser prior to them doing the appraisal. As I recall, there were strong feelings from both sides regarding if you should or shouldn''t. I am not trying to dig up the old debate so let me tell you what I did.

I gave the cert to the appraiser up front because she asked for it. I told her I didn''t offer it to her because I didn''t think she would want it to influence her. Her response was that some certs were fake and she must see if it was authentic.
Ok... I admit I thought that was strange because I wanted the diamond appraised, regardless. Even if she wanted to confirm the authenticity I felt she could have done that after her appraisal, but this was my first actual ''I''m-gonna-pay-for-it'' appraisal experience and I didn''t know what the process was like. Of course, there may be other reasons she did this...I just don''t know what they are. I would imagine that the appraisers first role is to authenticate the Diamond and not the GIA report.

Well, all I had was a copy of the certificate from the seller which did not clearly show all the inclusions because they were so tiny and simply didn''t copy well. In fact, I didn''t even know about some of the inclusions until I got the original cert the next week. Anyway, the appraiser admitted she didn''t see all the inclusions that were shown on the copy. I even followed her out of her office to go to another area to look at the diamond with a different scope. She did show me one of the inclusions but had the scope magnified higher than 10X, which she may have done to help me see it easier. It was evident that this inclusion was noted on the cert so I was sure the diamond matched the cert. She mentioned she saw a black inclusion that wasn''t even listed on the certificate but didn''t show that one to me. (I know, I should have asked to see it) Some lab. sketches/plots show clouds..., and that is something very hard to identify in the stone... (thats why some reports show on the sketch a whole bunch of internal inclusions that actually look closer to SI''s or even Imperfect grades, and then you are surprised that the Diamond is graded VS...)

When I received the final appraisal in the mail a week later, her diagram matched only a few of the inclusions listed on the certificate copy...meaning the additional inclusions that could not be seen on the copy were not there, the inclusions she admitted she could not see were not there (rightfully so), but there was no additional black inclusion that she said was there, either. Let me tell you, I have a 10X loupe and I am no expert but I have stared at that stone just trying to see the inclusions listed on the cert and I don''t see them. I keep trying so I will have a fingerprint to identify my stone. I see nothing --and I can''t help but think I would notice a black inclusion. Some black inclusions are a bit tricky to locate...

So...is it normal for an appraiser to not see the inclusions listed on the certificate? If she saw a black inclusion shouldn''t she have indicated it on the diagram? She appraised the diamond as VS2 (same as the GIA cert) and I would think a black inclusion may have made the clarity go down. True? I dont know who your appraiser is..., but it takes many years of experience to identify and locate every inclusion in a Diamond. If there is a ''black'' inclusion in the Diamond... it should have been identified on the sketch!!! She appraised the Diamond VS2 after or prior to seeing the GIA report?
Some VVS2 clarity grades are based on black colored pinpoints!!!


I''m sure I should have asked her to spend more time with me but I can''t help but feel that this appraisal may not have been given the attention that I was hoping for.
 

dianne

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Feb 18, 2007
Messages
1,052
Date: 2/22/2007 3:56:40 AM
Author: DiaGem

Date: 2/21/2007 11:08:57 PM
Author:dianne
I have read the postings debating whether to give the diamond certificate to the independent appraiser prior to them doing the appraisal. As I recall, there were strong feelings from both sides regarding if you should or shouldn''t. I am not trying to dig up the old debate so let me tell you what I did.

I gave the cert to the appraiser up front because she asked for it. I told her I didn''t offer it to her because I didn''t think she would want it to influence her. Her response was that some certs were fake and she must see if it was authentic.
Ok... I admit I thought that was strange because I wanted the diamond appraised, regardless. Even if she wanted to confirm the authenticity I felt she could have done that after her appraisal, but this was my first actual ''I''m-gonna-pay-for-it'' appraisal experience and I didn''t know what the process was like. Of course, there may be other reasons she did this...I just don''t know what they are. I would imagine that the appraisers first role is to authenticate the Diamond and not the GIA report. I totally agree. I would be more upset with a fake diamond than a fake certificate.

Well, all I had was a copy of the certificate from the seller which did not clearly show all the inclusions because they were so tiny and simply didn''t copy well. In fact, I didn''t even know about some of the inclusions until I got the original cert the next week. Anyway, the appraiser admitted she didn''t see all the inclusions that were shown on the copy. I even followed her out of her office to go to another area to look at the diamond with a different scope. She did show me one of the inclusions but had the scope magnified higher than 10X, which she may have done to help me see it easier. It was evident that this inclusion was noted on the cert so I was sure the diamond matched the cert. She mentioned she saw a black inclusion that wasn''t even listed on the certificate but didn''t show that one to me. (I know, I should have asked to see it) Some lab. sketches/plots show clouds..., and that is something very hard to identify in the stone... (thats why some reports show on the sketch a whole bunch of internal inclusions that actually look closer to SI''s or even Imperfect grades, and then you are surprised that the Diamond is graded VS...) Excellent point because there were 3 clouds shown on the GIA plot of the bottom of the diamond. The appraiser did not see them and I cannot for the life of me find them, either. There are 3 of the tiniest feathers indicated that are about as long as this dash "-". You hardly notice them on the original cert and they are colored red!--but the are crossing over the black lines of the plot diagram, too, so you just see a tiny speck of red. Some folks that I showed the cert didn''t even see them until I pointed them out. Most of thes inclusions are plotted from the bottom of the stone. The only top inclusion indicated is the largest feather. I make it a daily quest to try to find the darn thing and yesterday afternoon I may have found it with the sun shining on it just so...with my head angled 90 degrees...and holding my breath so I don''t fog up the stone...lol! I cannot feel it with my fingernail. I am such an amateur!

When I received the final appraisal in the mail a week later, her diagram matched only a few of the inclusions listed on the certificate copy...meaning the additional inclusions that could not be seen on the copy were not there, the inclusions she admitted she could not see were not there (rightfully so), but there was no additional black inclusion that she said was there, either. Let me tell you, I have a 10X loupe and I am no expert but I have stared at that stone just trying to see the inclusions listed on the cert and I don''t see them. I keep trying so I will have a fingerprint to identify my stone. I see nothing --and I can''t help but think I would notice a black inclusion. Some black inclusions are a bit tricky to locate...Now I didn''t know this. I figured the black inclusions would be faily easy to see.

So...is it normal for an appraiser to not see the inclusions listed on the certificate? If she saw a black inclusion shouldn''t she have indicated it on the diagram? She appraised the diamond as VS2 (same as the GIA cert) and I would think a black inclusion may have made the clarity go down. True? I dont know who your appraiser is..., but it takes many years of experience to identify and locate every inclusion in a Diamond. She has 28 years experience. If there is a ''black'' inclusion in the Diamond... it should have been identified on the sketch!!! That''s what I was thinking, too. She appraised the Diamond VS2 after or prior to seeing the GIA report? After, I gave her the certificate up front because she asked for it before she even looked at the stone.
Some VVS2 clarity grades are based on black colored pinpoints!!! Perhaps it was a pinpoint and that is why my amateur loupe-looking can''t find it.

I''m sure I should have asked her to spend more time with me but I can''t help but feel that this appraisal may not have been given the attention that I was hoping for.
 

denverappraiser

Ideal_Rock
Trade
Joined
Jul 21, 2004
Messages
8,746

The purpose of the little diagram on the grading report is to provide details about how the grader decided on a particular grade and to provide a map to recognize a particular diamond in the future. This diagram, called the ‘plot’, also serves to demonstrate the condition as of a particular date. Different plotters will use different levels of detail in drawing the diagrams and it’s not particularly unusual for the resulting diagrams to look quite different. They should always have whatever it was that ‘made the grade’, meaning the inclusion that, if absent, would have resulted in a higher clarity grade but other details can vary.


If she didn’t already do it, ask your appraiser to specifically confirm that the subject diamond is the same stone as the one described on the grading report. While you’re at it, ask her this same set of questions about details in the lab diagram that are concerning you. She’s working for you and her job is to use her training, experience and equipment to help you to understand what you have. Not everyone has the same questions and it’s hard to answer them all if people don’t ask.


Neil Beaty
GG(GIA) ICGA(AGS) NAJA
Professional Appraisals in Denver
 

RockDoc

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Aug 15, 2000
Messages
2,509
RE: They mystery of the sometimes there and sometimes not "black" inclusion.

Dianne..... the written description of this inclusion, leads me to believe that the following MIGHT be true. I can''t tell you for sure, because I did not see the stone.

As such I am making some critical assuptions about what you wrote, and what the appraiser saw, but this may or may not be factual.

What I believe MIGHT be happening is due to the critical angle of the inclusion. In that it is a "spot" - I am going to make an assumption that the "spot" is actually a diamond crystal within the stone. Because this is another crystal which is most likely oriented differently from the diamond itself, it may appear dark at certain angles and not at others.

Critical angle is one where when in that position light will not pass through the crystal. An example of this can be seen using the winshield of a car. When you stand in front of the car you can see through it, and if you gradually move along the fender to the door, when you get approximately perpendicular to the glass it turns dark.

Small diamond crystals within a diamond SOMETIMES DO THIS. The critical angle of diamond is 24 1/2 degrees. If the crystal is oriented in such a way the you view it at that angle it will turn dark. You can also occasionally see this effect when people say they can see an inclusion with their unaided eye from the side of the stone. The fact that it takes on a dark appearance makes it more visible.

However, there are some inclusions that do appear dark. What is actually happening when examining your stone, may be the above or not, but it is possible.

Inclusions, when carefully examined are viewed at various magnification settings. Often to identify the type of inclusion you have to use fairly high magnification and view it from a multitude of angles. Some inclusions are easily visible from one view at a particular angle, and then are not as visible when looking at a different angle.

As to knowing the grade in advance, if the appraiser is competent and ethical, that doesn''t matter. A professional appraiser will give you the grade he feels it is, and tells you he has a dissenting opinion from the one on the grading report.
Many times I do see a report in advance, but it doesn''t influence my grading, if I agree I say so, and if I don''t I say so and show the client WHY I formed the opinion that I did. If a customer wants my opinion without showing me the grading report, I have no problem with that, and really professional appraisers would not just agree with the lab report grading to make you feel good.

The major position is that the appraiser/gemologist be objective in his opinion for a subjective grading. As you can imagine, sometimes there is a difference between the grading of a lab and a gemologist.

Probably you should call the appraiser, and ask to see the stone again under her microscope at varying power magnifications, viewing it at mutiple angles, to see the inclusions one at a time, and have her explain and show you what she sees, and an explanation of what she sees etc.

Hope this helps.

Rockdoc
 

Nicrez

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Jan 21, 2004
Messages
3,230
RockDoc is absolutely right about the "black" inclusion possibly being something that was in a "spot". In my experience, a black inclusion is only black when viewed from 3 different angles (including crown up, pavillion up and at an angle) and the color of the inclusion is still black, meaning it might possibly be a smaller pyrope garnet inclusion, or even just a black carbon crystal within the stone.

If it is somewhat flat, and positioned within the stone at an angle where the light hits it, that inclusion can actually look darker than it is, I believe because a possible pocket of air trapped inside sometimes that doesn''t refect light the same as carbon. That is not always the explination, but on average that is what I have seen. That said, she should be analyzing the stone in several directions, so if it is black, that should be evident from all orientations of the stone.

Also, to be honest, some appraisers and grader like to see the cert for a purely time saving reason. Grading can be a eye-intensive process and time consuming when you don''t know what you are looking for. With time and practice it becomes faster, but sometimes, you can spot the inclusions much faster once you see where they are plotted, and it''s simply a verification of the plot to the stone. Could be the philosophy of "why reinvent the wheel". But that is just my personal opinion as to why she wanted the cert.

Also, with a loupe, sometimes it is hard to see inclusions, but with a microscope that magnifies over 10X, the analyzing of the stone should be simple and fast. Personally, I am addicted to the mircoscope, but using the loupe first gives you the grade immediately, because if you can''t see the inclusions at 10X, it is not a clarity setter. You grade at loupe level.

Good luck and if anything, ask questions of the appraiser. It''s your money, it''s right to ask. Also, personally, I would ask questions before I hire anyone, just to see their style. I once used an appraiser who to me was not worth his weight in beans! He was also WAY too expensive, and the next guy I went to was so much better...he was just two states AWAY!


GOOD LUCK!
 

dianne

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Feb 18, 2007
Messages
1,052
Neil, You are right...I should have asked more questions. I had an appointment and I knew I only had a limited amount of time but I should have fully understood everything before I left...or made arrangements for another meeting to discuss my questions. I have another post regarding this same appraisal asking about the appraisers comments that I had a high F color so, as you can see, I left with several questions. I see that I simply need to call and, perhaps, revisit her to discuss.

RockDoc, your explanation of the possible crystal was very interesting. First time I had heard of that but from the details you provided I can see how it could happen.

Nicrez, I think I need a microscope so I can search harder than I can with the loupe.

Thanks to all for your comments and insight!
 
Status
Not open for further replies. Please create a new topic or request for this thread to be opened.
Be a part of the community It's free, join today!
    Vintage OEC Bracelet
    Vintage OEC Bracelet
    June’s Birthstone Trinity
    June’s Birthstone Trinity
    Memorial Day Jewelry 2020
    Memorial Day Jewelry 2020

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