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What's the chance of finding a true red spinel?

MontageCreations

Rough_Rock
Trade
Joined
Apr 17, 2011
Messages
69
they are available, but true red, are the rarest, kind of like the best alexandrites, you see a few but the best ones hardly ever make it to the internet, they are scooped up by collectors and investors very fast.
 

Richard M.

Brilliant_Rock
Trade
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Feb 17, 2004
Messages
1,104
bright ice|1306619278|2932670 said:
Are they available in mass?
No. They are quite rare and command very high prices when available. They're not yet in the same price range as fine rubies but they're getting there. It's not well understood that spinel of the best color, either red or blue, is much rarer than comparable rubies and sapphires. Many consumers mistakenly think fine spinel is abundant, the result no doubt of its rejection by consumers for many years as somehow being an "inferior" gem. That sales resistance collapsed several years ago and now competition for the best stones is fierce .

There's always the possibility new sources will be discovered. It wasn't that long ago that spinel from Mahenge, Tanzania was unknown. As prices rise prospecting for new occurrences will intensify.

Richard M. (Rick Martin)
 

MieleMelograno

Rough_Rock
Joined
May 25, 2011
Messages
18
Yes,
In the best gem brokers offices.
In those brokerages you must have credentials, references :read: and be fully vetted as a buyer before they'll talk.
I'm not at that level yet :lol: I can talk to my friends in Bangkok to get a few #'s for you.
 

Harriet

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Jul 7, 2006
Messages
12,823
BrightIce,
There's also size to consider. In general, the bigger the stone, the rarer it is.
 

T L

Super_Ideal_Rock
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Sep 20, 2008
Messages
23,268
I take it you're not in love with the AJSgems spinel any more????

If you want pure pure red in anything, it will be difficult to come by in a natural and untreated stone. Hot pink is easier to find.
 

bright ice

Ideal_Rock
Premium
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May 14, 2010
Messages
4,086
TL|1306632370|2932785 said:
I take it you're not in love with the AJSgems spinel any more????

If you want pure pure red in anything, it will be difficult to come by in a natural and untreated stone. Hot pink is easier to find.
It's not that I don't like it. I just darn sure want to make the right choice in spinels. Wish I could just buy both colors.

I will post a thread later tonight and you can tell me what you think about the pink one.
 

Indylady

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Apr 28, 2008
Messages
5,574
No, they are not widely available.

You might be getting frustrated at this point as I have seen a few threads on different stones. It takes time to find the 'perfect' gem--and perfect for me may be different from perfect for you. So, you'll have to develop your own 'eye' and own preferences. Monitors, lighting, photography and personal preferences all skew our perception of what we see--so when you post a gem, you get all kinds of opinions, which can be confusing, which is why you'll want to develop your own 'eye'. As a general rule, it is easy to criticize a gem, but it is hard to find a gem that will fit the critiques and the parameters wanted (ie treatment, size, color) for the price one wants--and it may also be hard to fine a gem of a similar color with similar attributes again even if the color isn't 'ideal'.

So, what happens is that you post an emerald you're thinking of buying. And then someone posts a much better emerald, and says, "well, that's what an emerald is supposed to look like." And then you Google the thing, and they've posted the Chalk emerald. And then you think, well, I'll hold on to my $800 till I find something like that. But its not gonna happen. And then down the line, you realize you let go of a perfectly fine emerald that would look like a million bucks to any layman and would still be a very nice example to anyone that does know someone about emeralds. Hence the significance of having your own 'eye' and trusting your judgment, and to some degree, instinct.

Also, a few of the gems you've posted about, red spinels and pad's, are both rare and also contested on the topic of 'ideal' color. I am not trying to dissuade you from using CS, and CS'ers, as learning resource. I'm just saying that you might find the experience of gem buying more enjoyable if you take it a little slower, maybe buy a couple of learning stones, and know what you what so that you can know once you've found it.
 

minousbijoux

Super_Ideal_Rock
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Aug 5, 2010
Messages
12,377
IndyLady|1306650016|2932983 said:
It takes time to find the 'perfect' gem--and perfect for me may be different from perfect for you. So, you'll have to develop your own 'eye' and own preferences.

Also, a few of the gems you've posted about, red spinels and pad's, are both rare and also contested on the topic of 'ideal' color. I am not trying to dissuade you from using CS, and CS'ers, as learning resource. I'm just saying that you might find the experience of gem buying more enjoyable if you take it a little slower, maybe buy a couple of learning stones, and know what you what so that you can know once you've found it.
I could not agree more - if you know precisely what you are looking for, this forum is a great way to go. If you want to learn, ditto. But if you are wanting to purchase something for yourself, then perhaps its worth figuring out what you want before you ask...otherwise, you run the risk of buying what is popular here. And that which is popular here does not necessarily correlate to what would make a good investment stone.

As Indylady said, you can learn a lot from buying relatively inexpensive stones that can help you learn about cutting, refractive index, setting stones, etc. And the reason I bring this up is because a search for a really special stone typically takes a while - the biggest mistake you can make when you are planning on making a considerable investment in the stone is to rush it and end up with something that is popular with us PSers, but at the end of the day, you don't like it that much.

Of course, true red spinels exist and you will find one if you want. Just be prepared to go on a journey - following leads, and contacting many with questions.
 

Aoife

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Jun 23, 2010
Messages
1,779
Ditto to what IndyLady and Minou had to say. I almost wrote something along these lines last night, because I've noticed that you seem to have several different searches going on, and they are all slightly different. I know that other CS'ers have given you similar advice previously, but you really must take the time to develop your own eye, and learn your own preferences, or the chances are excellent that you will make a very expensive purchase that you look at months or years down the line and realize you don't like that much. I say that because most people who collect colored stones have made purchases they regret--it's part of the learning curve. Top color in some of the stones you are considering can run into the hundreds of thousands of dollars. If you aren't planning on spending that much, you are going to be making compromises, so what are you willing to compromise on?


EDTA: Not to mention the fact that asking a CS'er, no matter how experienced they are, to find "the best" stone for you when you haven't yet pinpointed what you are really, truly looking for, is placing a really huge responsibility on another person, especially when judging color and cut from photographs is essentially riddled with inaccuracies. Personally, I'd hesitate to take on that kind of very expensive responsibility unless I could see the gemstones IRL.
 

bright ice

Ideal_Rock
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May 14, 2010
Messages
4,086
Thanks for all replies. I know you are all giving me good advice.

I know for sure that I would really like to have a nice Mahenge reddish pink stone in a good size.

I AM getting frustrated at this point, and I know it may take a while to find. Please don't critisize me too bad for posting frequently!
 

PinkTower

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Mar 15, 2009
Messages
1,129
Richard M.|1306620948|2932687 said:
bright ice|1306619278|2932670 said:
Are they available in mass?
No. They are quite rare and command very high prices when available. They're not yet in the same price range as fine rubies but they're getting there. It's not well understood that spinel of the best color, either red or blue, is much rarer than comparable rubies and sapphires. Many consumers mistakenly think fine spinel is abundant, the result no doubt of its rejection by consumers for many years as somehow being an "inferior" gem. That sales resistance collapsed several years ago and now competition for the best stones is fierce .

There's always the possibility new sources will be discovered. It wasn't that long ago that spinel from Mahenge, Tanzania was unknown. As prices rise prospecting for new occurrences will intensify.

Richard M. (Rick Martin)
Hello, I saw this post and it jogged my memory. Several, perhaps three, years ago I was able to purchase a small spinel that Rick had listed. I am just a novice, but I consider myself very lucky to have gotten it when I did. Rick described the color as "orange-red". I mention this here, because the orange is not seen by my eye, but obviously, he is the expert. So, you might look for one that someone highly reputable classed as orange-red. I imagine the price will still be way up there, but, it is worth a try. I saved Rick's photo, but I am sorry that I don't know how to post it, as it is a web archive format and will not co-operate.
 

Aoife

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Jun 23, 2010
Messages
1,779
bright ice|1306678945|2933084 said:
Thanks for all replies. I know you are all giving me good advice.

I know for sure that I would really like to have a nice Mahenge reddish pink stone in a good size.

I AM getting frustrated at this point, and I know it may take a while to find. Please don't critisize me too bad for posting frequently!
No criticism here, just concern! On the plus side, you've certainly seen some stones you know you don't want, so that is definitely progress.
 

Indylady

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Apr 28, 2008
Messages
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bright ice|1306678945|2933084 said:
Thanks for all replies. I know you are all giving me good advice.

I know for sure that I would really like to have a nice Mahenge reddish pink stone in a good size.

I AM getting frustrated at this point, and I know it may take a while to find. Please don't critisize me too bad for posting frequently!
Bright Ice, my intent was not to criticize you for posting frequently. The more new threads there are, the more interesting this board becomes! I certainly welcome your posts. I simply wanted to offer a little caution, especially since it seems that you are looking for something special--like others have said, I would hate for you to end up with a stone that you didn't 'love' for the long run, or for you to realize that your own tastes have changed or refined over time and that your stone no longer fits what you like.
 

bright ice

Ideal_Rock
Premium
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May 14, 2010
Messages
4,086
IndyLady|1306684961|2933138 said:
bright ice|1306678945|2933084 said:
Thanks for all replies. I know you are all giving me good advice.

I know for sure that I would really like to have a nice Mahenge reddish pink stone in a good size.

I AM getting frustrated at this point, and I know it may take a while to find. Please don't critisize me too bad for posting frequently!
Bright Ice, my intent was not to criticize you for posting frequently. The more new threads there are, the more interesting this board becomes! I certainly welcome your posts. I simply wanted to offer a little caution, especially since it seems that you are looking for something special--like others have said, I would hate for you to end up with a stone that you didn't 'love' for the long run, or for you to realize that your own tastes have changed or refined over time and that your stone no longer fits what you like.
I totally understand IndyLady and appreciate you all.
 

movie zombie

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Jan 20, 2005
Messages
11,879
take your time. don't get frustrated. save your $ while you look to increase your budget. unless you have unlimited resources you are not going to find a reasonably priced true red spinel. most of us have to make tradeoffs when buying stones and to do that one has to get educated re color stones. you're doing that, obviously, when asking questions. only you know what will please your eye and what tradeoffs you are willing to make due to your budget.

MoZo
 

minousbijoux

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
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Messages
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No criticism meant here either :bigsmile: - only genuine concern, and a hope that you don't feel like your money is burning a hole in your pocket and that you must spend it quickly :$$):

I would suggest:

1 If possible, go to gem shows;

2 focus on one stone at a time - unless the perfect stone magically drops into your lap - and learning about it.

3. Figure out the level of clarity you can live with, and then think about how it will fit on your finger so you can figure out the ballpark size and dimension. I would also suggest you might want to contact Jim Rentfrow, lisa Elser and Jeffrey Hunt - those involved in One World Gemstone and the Green Gemstone Foundation. They seem to be reaching out in a big way to folks in Tanzania and might have additional suggestions for stones for you. But it would probably be a good idea if you could give them some guidelines.

I hope this helps and the stone you find fills the void in your search!
 

Pandora II

Ideal_Rock
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Messages
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bright ice|1306678945|2933084 said:
Thanks for all replies. I know you are all giving me good advice.

I know for sure that I would really like to have a nice Mahenge reddish pink stone in a good size.

I AM getting frustrated at this point, and I know it may take a while to find. Please don't critisize me too bad for posting frequently!
Unfortunately you can't buy coloured gemstones 'off the shelf' unless you are wanting the most common colours in common species.

It can take MONTHS to find the right stone. One guy came to PS looking for a ruby for an e-ring. He found one of the finest rubies I have ever seen - it was 1.10ct, cost over $10k and took him FIFTEEN months to find.

It took me around 2 months to track down my tsav and I've spent several years looking for some of the rarer stones in my collection.

IIRC, you are currently looking for a padmaraga sapphire, a top red spinel and a hot pink sapphire? All in fairly big sizes? That means you are looking for three proverbial needles in haystacks... some of the hardest to define colours - where slight differences in shade can mean $$$ in price difference - in some of the rarest and most expensive gemstones out there.

Ask all the questions you want, but don't get despondant if the perfect stone doesn't turn up tomorrow. The worst thing you can do is get impatient and rush things, especially if you are spending money that wouldn't be pocket-change to you. Once you have looked at lots of stones and worked out what makes one cost x and another cost xx and worked out where you can compromise and where you can't then you will find the search both easier and less likely to be something you regret further down the line.

I'm not that picky on cut and like traditional faceting. I'm happy with heat-treatment. I'm happy with eye-clean and like inclusions under a loupe. I'm incredibly picky about colour. So I'd be happy with a top premium colour stone that was heated, had some inclusions, wasn't precision cut and was a smaller size than my ideal. Others will have different parameters - learning what yours are is very important.

For me to buy a stone I have to 'have to have it'. I've spent nights dreaming about a particular stone and that generally tells me that I will regret letting it go. If I'm meh about it, or try to tell myself that it's a good buy for the price then I know I will be very annoyed when I see the perfect stone 6 months later and have already spent the budget!

Going to museums and gem-shows is a great way to learn - but, do remember that the lighting in gem-shows is specifically designed to make stones look their best and different types of light are used to display different colours of stones. What you buy there may not look the same outside the show or in your house.

The effect of light on colour is a very important one. A vendor in New York might see a stone as a pure-red, the client in California may see an orange-red colour. Stones bought at the equator will look different in Northern Europe. I have blue sapphires that I bought in Sri Lanka that I've unwrapped at home and thought hmmm, that doesn't look quite the same shade that I remember...

My tutor tells a tale of a London dealer who was an expert on emeralds with many years in the trade. He often went out to Colombia and always took his own master-stone with him against which he could compare stones that he was thinking of buying. One trip he forgot to take his master-stone. During that trip he saw the most amazing emerald - incredible colour, one of the finest he had ever seen. He bought it for a very significant sum. When he got it back to London, it looked completely black. He has kept it mounted in his office as a memento of what happens when you forget your master-stone and of the incredible difference that the light at a particular location can have on the appearance of a gemstone.

So, ask for lots of photos but do bear in mind that no matter how the vendor tries, the stone may not look exactly the same when you receive it.
 

movie zombie

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Jan 20, 2005
Messages
11,879
Pandora, you raise a good point re light being different in different parts of the world....at least outside. the angle of the sun at different times of the year depending upon locality is going to effect our vision. sigh.
 

Pandora II

Ideal_Rock
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Aug 3, 2006
Messages
9,613
Not just outside...

Take 3 'daylight' lamps, chances are they will all be different and therefore all show slightly different results when comparing the same stone under each.

Ditto for nearly all light-bulbs. So, your incandescent bulb that makes my red stone look orange may not be the same as my incandescent bulb that makes my red stone look brown despite what is written on the packaging!
 

Harriet

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Jul 7, 2006
Messages
12,823
BrightIce,

You've been given very sound advice in this thread. I too counsel patience. The gem YOU want may take eons to find. Conversely, it could well fall into your lap tomorrow. Allow me to add two more comments: (i) If you think a stone is The One, act decisively (but not hastily -- use the return period to look at it in different lighting, play with it, and live with it for a little while); (ii) If you intend to build a collection, be open-minded. For example, I knew I'd like a demantoid at some point, but did not actively search for one as I knew it'd be too expensive. Out of the blue, an estate jeweller I know called me and said he had a surprise for me. Gems are gifts of nature and seem to show up when they choose! Good luck!
 

FrekeChild

Super_Ideal_Rock
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Dec 14, 2007
Messages
19,456
athenaworth|1306778066|2933805 said:
Bright Ice: Did you see this? http://www.rwwise.com/products/id|1083

I didn't read this entire thread but thought of you when I saw it.
I believe she has that one on hold? On my work monitor it looks more red, on my laptop at home it looks more purple-y...
 

Aoife

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Jun 23, 2010
Messages
1,779
FrekeChild|1306779092|2933816 said:
athenaworth|1306778066|2933805 said:
Bright Ice: Did you see this? http://www.rwwise.com/products/id|1083

I didn't read this entire thread but thought of you when I saw it.
I believe she has that one on hold? On my work monitor it looks more red, on my laptop at home it looks more purple-y...
It's described as being orangey-red, and that's how it looks on my monitor. It looks dark to me, too.
 
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