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What price per carat should you expect to pay for bl. Sap?

Area57

Rough_Rock
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I'm new to collecting gemstones. I was wondering what kind of a ballpark figure I might expect to pay per carat for a good quality, eye clean, medium blue sapphire?

From looking around the Internet and in a few stores, it seems to be all over the place.

They also seem, upon first inspection, to be relatively easy to learn to spot a good specimen. Am I wrong?

First there is color. I have read that is the most important attribute, than any inclusions, and cut. Diamonds seem harder because they have more inclusions and they are cut better to hide them.
 

arkieb1

Ideal_Rock
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Re: What price per carat should you expect to pay for bl. Sa

Prices vary not only due to colour, but they also take into account things like the level of inclusions, treatments - untreated, heat only, BE....

I can also personally attest just about every vendor has a different idea of what "medium blue" actually is in colour tone, so it is probably best to show them photos and make suggestions about the colour you want. A large amount of vendor pics also use strong specific lighting that makes their stones look more vivid than they really are as well, so you want to see the stone on a white background and on the back of the hand in natural lighting if possible.
 

Area57

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Re: What price per carat should you expect to pay for bl. Sa

Exactly. Which is why it is so hard for a new collector to understand if he or she is paying too much or getting a good deal.
 

arkieb1

Ideal_Rock
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Re: What price per carat should you expect to pay for bl. Sa

I don't really look at it as "getting a good deal" think about it as buying something that has either no treatment at all or heat only that is certified as such that is a colour you love and you will be on the right path.

Post pics of the colour you want and the price you want to pay and people will offer you suggestions.
 

Area57

Rough_Rock
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Re: What price per carat should you expect to pay for bl. Sa

Ok, the photo I uploaded is a color I like, either that color or one shade darker.

Maybe getting a good deal is the wrong way to look at it. How about not getting ripped off? It has become my belief in my short time looking at gems, that the general novice diamond engagement ring buyer goes to the mall and gets a pretty poor stone for a poor price. But the mall stores have fancy lights and charts and sales, always marked up so they can give you the sale price.

I really don't know that much about it, but it doesn't seem like buying an iPhone. An iPhone is $650. That's just how much it costs. You know what kind of deal you are getting.

The sapphire in the photo is about 2 carats but $9,000. The site I randomly pulled it from as a color example is full of very expensive sapphires. More per carat than I have ever seen. Are they worth it? Is that how much a sapphire costs or are they overpriced? I just dont know.

But if I want to buy any I had better learn.

_471.jpeg
 

arkieb1

Ideal_Rock
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Re: What price per carat should you expect to pay for bl. Sa

Ask Pearlmans for hand pics of any that you like the look of, their pics are not as dark as the sapphires actually appear in real life, so ask for real life photos on the back of a hand of any possible contenders;

http://www.pearlmansjewelers.com/gemstones/?type=sapphire&shape=&color=blue&minct=2.00&maxct=&min=&max=&sku=&pictures=Yes

This is worth reading too if you haven't already to save the same questions being answered again;

[URL='https://www.pricescope.com/community/threads/sapphires-help-me-decide.215837/']https://www.pricescope.com/community/threads/sapphires-help-me-decide.215837/[/URL]

Joe Escobar has nice sapphires too;

http://www.escobardiamonds.com/

If you go with the natural sapphire company ask for natural pics on the back of the hand in natural lighting, their website photos also don't usually reflect the exact colour of the stones.

If you hide the inclusion under a prong, and are O.K with heat only, this would be in your budget and I suspect colour range too;

https://www.mastercutgems.com/Products-301-ANAGEE_Sri_Lanka_Gems/7708-Natural_fine_Blue_Sri_lanka_Sapphire_4_12_carat-GemMedia.php?FromPage=2&ProductMediaID=29651

Dana has a number of nice sapphires.
 

chrono

Super_Ideal_Rock
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Re: What price per carat should you expect to pay for bl. Sa

Your description is insufficient to explain what you are looking for.
Clarity - eye clean, which is great.
Medium blue sapphire - medium toned, pure blue hue but what level of saturation? Pure blue or a touch of violet is acceptable?
Treatment - heat only or no heat?

Cut - important but rarely discussed. The example you showed from NSC has a window so large that one can drive a truck through it. The colour is also not a fine blue, but above average. Good cutting, but not necessarily precision cut, can not only enhance the colouration, but improve brilliance/sparkle. Good cutting will show very little darkness (extinction), have minimal bowtie, and minimal windowing. A small tilt window is unavoidable, depending on the viewing angle.
 

eastjavaman

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Re: What price per carat should you expect to pay for bl. Sa

Assuming all things being equal, bigger stones carats command more dollars per carat. :$$):
 

QuantumStuff

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Re: What price per carat should you expect to pay for bl. Sa

Also, almost all online retailers will negotiate the price down. Some more than others. For the vendor whose stone you posted, start by taking 25% off the price, then work down from there.

But you're right...for a novice, and even for educated consumers, prices are all over the place. All things being equal, 10 different vendors will price the same stone at 10 different prices.

And like Chrono mentioned, a precision cut can make all the difference. I would look at some of the precision faceters and see what they have on hand. I personally feel that you stand a much better chance of maximizing value. Look on the vendor list on the main page of the forum.
 

Area57

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Re: What price per carat should you expect to pay for bl. Sa

What is a window? I did try to google it, but it came up with actual window made of sapphire.
 

deskjockey

Brilliant_Rock
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Re: What price per carat should you expect to pay for bl. Sa

A window is when there's a dead spot in the middle of a stone, usually from being cut too shallow, that allows you to see straight through the stone rather than having light reflected back at you.

There's a few examples here, showing how proper cut can make the same stones look better:

http://www.gemartservices.com/recutting.htm

Another here, featuring a blue sapphire:
http://www.ajsgem.com/articles/gemstone-windows-and-windowing.html
 

Area57

Rough_Rock
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Re: What price per carat should you expect to pay for bl. Sa

Thanks, I thought that was it, but couldn't descibe what made it so.

Well, then this sapphire is a good example of my overall question on how to determine if a gem is a good price. Here is another photo of the same sapphire, and I don't know how much this matters, but the bottom is offcenter. Yest this 2.14 carat sapphire is nine thousand dollars.

What makes this one so expensive? Is it because they descibe it as internally flawless or vvs1, or that it is untreated? I have read that rubies and diamonds are very rare to find at that size but sapphires not so much.

_474.jpeg
 

chrono

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Re: What price per carat should you expect to pay for bl. Sa

NSC is one of the more expensive vendors for sapphires but they fill a market for someone who needs a stone in a hurry, prefers to buy in person (store in NYC) and can provide a complete package (stone and setting).

https://www.mastercutgems.com/Products-301-ANAGEE_Sri_Lanka_Gems/8536-ANAGEE_-_AGL_Natural_Unheated_Sapphire_2_45_ct-Gem.php?FromPage=1
https://www.mastercutgems.com/Products-301-ANAGEE_Sri_Lanka_Gems/8202-Natural_Fine_Blue_Sapphire_Unheated_2_64_carat-Gem.php?FromPage=1

These 2 are sold but listed for price comparison purposes.
http://gemrite.com/home/170-blue-sapphire-235-cts.html
http://gemrite.com/sapphire/58-blue-sapphire-230-cts.html
 

Area57

Rough_Rock
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Re: What price per carat should you expect to pay for bl. Sa

Thanks, I never knew sapphires were this expensive. Grew up around too much mall jewelry I think :whistle:

Are they going up or not?
 

chrono

Super_Ideal_Rock
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Re: What price per carat should you expect to pay for bl. Sa

The 4 listed links shows comparable sapphires of similar carat weight, untreated and colour with better cut for half the price of the NSC sapphire. A heated stone will be around $2K. Pricing seems to have stabilized this year.
 

Area57

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Re: What price per carat should you expect to pay for bl. Sa

What can expect to pay for a high quality 1/2-3/4?
 

Coralfish

Shiny_Rock
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Re: What price per carat should you expect to pay for bl. Sa

I understand your confusion. Even just off the recommended vendors list, pricing seems to be all over the place.
The questions you are asking, you are slowly zoning in on the answers you seek but this method should expedite it.

Please specify:

i) Desired shape (oval, cushion, round etc)
ii) Post images of the colour you like best. Just search for pics of sapphires and sapphire rings and post what catches your eye.
iii) Does it have to be unheated, or will you tolerate heat?
iv) Budget
v) Minimum desired carat weight

Then PSers will spend time generating suggestions. From there you will get an aggregate of a good value sapphire and see what attributes are tradeoffs for price.

See, price per carat goes up a large amount as

the sapphire simply increases in size
gets closer to trade ideal in colour
is unheated
is well-cut

and so on.

You just have to look at lots and lots and lots of sapphires from as many sources as possible to start to solve this problem, or alternatively post i)-v) above and you will get help from here in getting what you want.

Before you post again, I would strongly recommend reading carefully through this. I think you will get a lot out of it and we would be happy to answer any questions that arise as a result of reading it.

[URL='https://www.pricescope.com/community/threads/new-to-coloured-gemstone-buying-read-this-first.174284/']https://www.pricescope.com/community/threads/new-to-coloured-gemstone-buying-read-this-first.174284/[/URL]
 

Area57

Rough_Rock
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Messages
73
Re: What price per carat should you expect to pay for bl. Sa

Just read through that beginners thread. Good thread. Good information. Thanks.

What do I want? I want to start a collection of faceted gemstones focusing on sapphires. So to start with I would like a medium blue, high quality, half to three quarters, carat, or maybe up to a carat loose gemstone. I think it would be a good way to start off a collection. A middle of the road blue, which is close to the ideal, cut well, large, but not huge stone.

It looks like so many are heated that I will have to accept this. Maybe it's not worth the cost to me. If it was someone like dying or filling or those other methods, I would feel differently, but heating I can live with.
 

QuantumStuff

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Re: What price per carat should you expect to pay for bl. Sa

To answer your question...

You can expect to pay anywhere form $200 ct. up to $2000-$3000 ct. maybe more. I have seen a lot of very, very nice stones in that size range go for $400-600 ct. I bought a pair of exceptionally matched violet .45 ct each for $200 and a another pair of well matched oval blues, exceptional color/saturation ~.8 ct each for $1800.

It's all over the place really. Keep your eye out for deals. Currently there is a person on LoupeTroop that looks to be unloading some very nice stones. I'm surprised at how affordable these are. These are stones that she bought from reputable vendors just over a year ago, and now is unloading them for 50% or less of what she paid.

Sapphire is a solid investment if properly valued.
 
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