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Why is this unheated Burmese Ruby (pigeon blood?) cheap in comparison??

Sydneyphoenix

Rough_Rock
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Apr 4, 2021
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So I have been feasting on eye-candy gemstones, especially jadeite, emerald and rubies lately and stumbled across “The Natural Ruby Company”. Looks like the business also run parallel sites for emerald and sapphire; emerald sites didn’t interest me as most of their stuff seem to be oiled, whereas sapphire site have a decent selection of untreated padparadscha sapphires for anyone interested.

The ruby site have a good selection of unheated Burmese rubies, and seem to have some stock in common with Leibish Co.; I wonder if two companies are somehow affiliated. The prices are pretty good, but in particular one stone caught my eye...


The colour in this 1.41ct stone is very good, probably would’ve scored GRS “pigeon blood” easily (the stone has GIA certificate), and it is considerably larger (most others in similar price range are in 1.0-1.1ct vicinity) and have better clarity (eye-clean vs VS/SI) than stones in similar price range. Thought it’s either a steal or there’s more to it, then realised on playing videos that table face isn’t very sparkly or bright, rather cloudy. I wonder if it’s “windowing” effect but the red colour on table is not particularly light, just...dulled? I see the depth is nowhere near optimal as is for round diamonds, I know this is ruby but thought that might have some relevance given we are talking about the same cut.

I wonder if you guys can examine the item and see if you can see the cloudy face and if anything else may bring down the value; is it fair pricing? I’m not edging to buy this stone, the cloudy face sort of is a turn-off but more for education.
 

chrono

Super_Ideal_Rock
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Stone looks really dark when viewed at arm's length, window is huge (makes the middle look dull) due to the very shallow 54% depth.
 

dk168

Ideal_Rock
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I am bothered by the large window too, and can also see a bit of brown in the colour when viewed using my laptop.

I would not be prepared to pay that much for it.

Personal preferences and opinions etc...

DK :))
 

musicloveranthony

Shiny_Rock
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Feb 1, 2014
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It's got a nice carat weight and clarity, but most of that is in unsupported width. It's a fine color; for the price you won't find a nicer color. It's cheap because it's "native cut" for width, not for beauty. If I bought that stone, I'd have a precision cutter clean it up and I'd expect about 50% weight loss for a much brighter stone.
 

voce

Ideal_Rock
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FWIW it's fairly priced IMO, but I once hit check out with a 3 ct ruby listed on the natural sapphire company website that was going for $2k-ish only to be told that it was a big screw up on their end, so they cancelled my order. They later listed it at $67k, which I think was totally overpriced. Due to my experience I wouldn't be totally shocked if they decided the price was too low and cancelled the order after you hit all the purchase buttons on your end.
 

SomethingNew

Shiny_Rock
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Is Natural Sapphire Company (including Natural Ruby Company) still a recommended vendor by PS?

This is an old post, but there seemed to be some unhappy experience with this seller....

 

Bron357

Ideal_Rock
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It’s seems mostly lifeless. While around the edges there is some facet “life” the centre is completely “dead”.
It’s also very dark in tone and not what I’d call vivid.
I think once set it will look flat and unappealing.
this is my unheated Burmese ruby in low light 04C59F5A-EA68-45A7-AEC5-0F51376C4389.jpeg AC10EBF2-893E-403B-893E-ECA27D9BD4EB.jpeg , this is what I think rubies need to do to justify their hefty price tag. 41A470E9-923B-4DC0-AF47-C79DBC054888.jpeg
 

Bron357

Ideal_Rock
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The other point I question is origin.
The GIA report doesn’t include Origin. Seeing as it’s only another $15 to get a GIA coloured stone report including origin, why didn’t they get it?
Burmese rubies are highly regarded and attract a higher price so why didn’t they spend the extra $15 for confirmation?
Whose opinion is it that it’s from Burma?
The may say it’s from Burma but that’s not what the GIA report includes.
 

Sydneyphoenix

Rough_Rock
Joined
Apr 4, 2021
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Thank you all. I didn't find the stone visually appealing either, just wondered I am the odd one out in terms of ruby preferences. So maybe I was right about windowing; good point about poor native cut with shallow depth and flat pavilion. At least the shop makes it easily to analyse it.

It’s seems mostly lifeless. While around the edges there is some facet “life” the centre is completely “dead”.
It’s also very dark in tone and not what I’d call vivid.
I think once set it will look flat and unappealing.
this is my unheated Burmese ruby in low light 04C59F5A-EA68-45A7-AEC5-0F51376C4389.jpeg AC10EBF2-893E-403B-893E-ECA27D9BD4EB.jpeg , this is what I think rubies need to do to justify their hefty price tag. 41A470E9-923B-4DC0-AF47-C79DBC054888.jpeg

That's one beautiful gem!!

The other point I question is origin.
The GIA report doesn’t include Origin. Seeing as it’s only another $15 to get a GIA coloured stone report including origin, why didn’t they get it?
Burmese rubies are highly regarded and attract a higher price so why didn’t they spend the extra $15 for confirmation?
Whose opinion is it that it’s from Burma?
The may say it’s from Burma but that’s not what the GIA report includes.

Good point, I wondered. I guess whoever wants to buy from them is best advised to get or GIA origin report or get another report from AGL or GRS, preferably before the final settlement.
 

Sydneyphoenix

Rough_Rock
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Apr 4, 2021
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In hand it looks very purplish. If this is the case, that is why,

Yeah it does seems to be purplish on video...

I am bothered by the large window too, and can also see a bit of brown in the colour when viewed using my laptop.

I would not be prepared to pay that much for it.

Personal preferences and opinions etc...

DK :))

Maybe more of deep red rather than vivid? I found a couple that are graded by GRS as vivid red/pigeon blood, indeed quite deep but too deep for "pigeon blood"? Also seem to have some dark "veining", or what that dark streaks are, do not look like typical extinctions. Leibish & Co. seem to have exact same stones by the way, I suppose these two companies are somehow affiliated.




And this 1.16ct stone, substantially more expensive than the original 1.41ct, maybe acceptable windowing or still not much better? Crown is marginally better, still shallow depth.

 

Bron357

Ideal_Rock
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The 1.53 one has surface reaching fissures, so I’d avoid that one.
The 1.16 one is pretty flat so cutting wise it will have a window. Also looks a bit Orange toned to me as well. No report other than an in-house one.
You really need independent reports, not “in house” ones and if you’re buying Burmese you want that origin showing on the lab report.
I’ll add, a Burmese ruby isn’t a guarantee of quality, just like anywhere, very average examples abound.
Also, rubies are cut for weight, not optical performance. Most rubies will have a window of sorts but usually it’s not a big issue because of the depth of colour.
Origin and colour are obviously big price drivers. As is a non heated status. While the elusive “Pigeon Blood Red” colour is held in high esteem (and overused by vendors!) it can be “deep toned” and not everyone’s favourite. Buy the colour that appeals to you.
If you are buying a premium origin ie Burmese you want an example that embodies the traits of rubies from that source. With Burmese rubies it’s glow. It’s quite a magic quality.
 

Sydneyphoenix

Rough_Rock
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Apr 4, 2021
Messages
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The 1.53 one has surface reaching fissures, so I’d avoid that one.
The 1.16 one is pretty flat so cutting wise it will have a window. Also looks a bit Orange toned to me as well. No report other than an in-house one.
You really need independent reports, not “in house” ones and if you’re buying Burmese you want that origin showing on the lab report.
I’ll add, a Burmese ruby isn’t a guarantee of quality, just like anywhere, very average examples abound.
Also, rubies are cut for weight, not optical performance. Most rubies will have a window of sorts but usually it’s not a big issue because of the depth of colour.
Origin and colour are obviously big price drivers. As is a non heated status. While the elusive “Pigeon Blood Red” colour is held in high esteem (and overused by vendors!) it can be “deep toned” and not everyone’s favourite. Buy the colour that appeals to you.
If you are buying a premium origin ie Burmese you want an example that embodies the traits of rubies from that source. With Burmese rubies it’s glow. It’s quite a magic quality.

I was wondering about that dark ?fissure line on 1.53ct one, was wondering what it really is. Looks like 1.08ct also has a dark fissure but not as prominent?
The 1.16ct is not a great example either, I think only marginally better than original 1.41ct for windowing.

Probably one of best quality from their inventory and my personal favourite (though way over any budget):

 

Sydneyphoenix

Rough_Rock
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Looking at the videos, when we talk about fissures, are we looking at the black thick line near the edge of the table for 1.53ct stone?
 

qubitasaurus

Brilliant_Rock
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Wow these aren't really very appealing as a batch (large windows, very hazzy, surface reachng inclusions, very dark. Not totally what you'd be hoping for in a stone), you shouldn't really buy any of them, have you looked arround at the inventory of gemfix and africa gems/pearlman's? Have you considered red spinel as well? It may open up your choices and lead to a nicer stone.
 

Sydneyphoenix

Rough_Rock
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Apr 4, 2021
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Wow these aren't really very appealing as a batch (large windows, very hazzy, surface reachng inclusions, very dark. Not totally what you'd be hoping for in a stone), you shouldn't really buy any of them, have you looked arround at the inventory of gemfix and africa gems/pearlman's? Have you considered red spinel as well? It may open up your choices and lead to a nicer stone.

Not intending on buying any of them, or any from that site for now. More to improve my knowledge and eyes for rubies. There are a couple of rubies I am keeping eyes on web...
I looked at the sites you mentioned before , seem to be all non-Burma, heated or both. Ah well, as I said, not buying right now.
How do you tell if inclusions or fissures are reaching surface? I see some dark inclusions that are not eye-pleasing but still trying to figure which are surface-reaching inclusion impacting on stability and value.
 

qubitasaurus

Brilliant_Rock
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Not intending on buying any of them, or any from that site for now. More to improve my knowledge and eyes for rubies. There are a couple of rubies I am keeping eyes on web...
I looked at the sites you mentioned before , seem to be all non-Burma, heated or both. Ah well, as I said, not buying right now.
How do you tell if inclusions or fissures are reaching surface? I see some dark inclusions that are not eye-pleasing but still trying to figure which are surface-reaching inclusion impacting on stability and value.

The funny thing about that one is that 'rare gems' and 'gems with an origin premium' are only valuable if they have the qualities which were associated with the presitge factor. If you buy an uggly but very rare gem or a mostly opaque/badly chipped/riddled with surface reaching inclusions/pancake-esq ruby it remains almost worthless despite being burmese. I suppose because it doesnt have the appealing quality that people were actually searching for when looking for exclusive item X. Also burmese stuff which has flux healing is not that rare, and buying an item that was a really good candidate for this process, but hasnt had it applied yet is generally not the most financially robust decision. Its much better to buy red spinel or ruby from another origin at that stage.

Re the surface reaching inclusions you can see the crack accross the table in this one. But in general there is no way to know for sure, which is why its recommended to make sure there is a robust return policy.
 
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Sydneyphoenix

Rough_Rock
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The funny thing about that one is that 'rare gems' and 'gems with an origin premium' are only valuable if they have the qualities which were associated with the presitge factor. If you buy an uggly but very rare gem or a mostly opaque/badly chipped/riddled with surface reaching inclusions/pancake-esq ruby it remains almost worthless despite being burmese. I suppose because it doesnt have the appealing quality that people were actually searching for when looking for exclusive item X. Also burmese stuff which has flux healing is not that rare, and buying an item that was a really good candidate for this process, but hasnt had it applied yet is generally not the most financially robust decision. Its much better to buy red spinel or ruby from another origin at that stage.

Re the surface reaching inclusions you can see the crack accross the table in this one. But in general there is no way to know for sure, which is why its recommended to make sure there is a robust return policy.

Lol I thought it was just surface scratch, not the extension of the internal fissure. In any case have a glaringly obvious black inclusion across the edge of the table too...Good point about having to get the stones with signature features if paying for origin premium etc.
Btw, better check certificates attached to gems for this company, the GRS certificate and the listing does not match up at all!! A red flag?

 

voce

Ideal_Rock
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Btw, better check certificates attached to gems for this company, the GRS certificate and the listing does not match up at all!! A red flag?


Yes, I'd say so. A worse mistake than listing a 3 ct ruby for $2k!
 

Bron357

Ideal_Rock
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All those rubies look like red blobs. None of them seem to be reflecting back any “glow”. Looking through their other rubies, only the ones with HUGE price tags look like good rubies.
When you do buy a ruby make sure the vendor has a good return policy. Sometimes you need to see a gemstone in person to assess it properly. Vendors will often use the best lighting and editing techniques to make their wares look their very best. Not much point in paying big dollars for something that looks blah in normal lighting conditions.
 

Sydneyphoenix

Rough_Rock
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All those rubies look like red blobs. None of them seem to be reflecting back any “glow”. Looking through their other rubies, only the ones with HUGE price tags look like good rubies.
When you do buy a ruby make sure the vendor has a good return policy. Sometimes you need to see a gemstone in person to assess it properly. Vendors will often use the best lighting and editing techniques to make their wares look their very best. Not much point in paying big dollars for something that looks blah in normal lighting conditions.

Couple of stones with reasonable prices somewhat better in terms of windowing but yeah on the whole only expensive ones tend to have good sparkle with some exceptions; unless you look at Mozambique or heated...

I understand rule-of-thumb depth for corundum is 60-75%, majority of the company’s rubies are way too shallow. Is there a general guide as to good crown angle, I understand pavilion usually have steps so measuring angles for it is rare.
 

Sydneyphoenix

Rough_Rock
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And looking at other Burmese rubies stocked by Leibish...graded as pigeon blood but almost wine-colour dark red to me (is that normal?), and do I see a lot of extinctions on the edges of the table? At least no surface-reaching fissures I can see...

 

icy_jade

Ideal_Rock
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graded as pigeon blood but almost wine-colour dark red to me (is that normal?)

There are a few labs known to be very generous in giving preferred color descriptions. So... I no longer trust color description from those labs.
 

distracts

Ideal_Rock
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Yeah, I trust my eyes more than literally anyone's description of the color. I wouldn't bother buying a ruby that looks like it might as well be a garnet, when I could get a dark red garnet for much much less that would probably be cut better and sparkle more. Unfortunately for me, the only rubies I'm interested in are super expensive, lol
 

T L

Super_Ideal_Rock
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Not sure if this has been mentioned, but what bothers me is the fact that origin was not requested on the GIA report. If the origin is so important and intrinsic to the value of a stone, in this case, a ruby, then why not ask GIA to specify it??

I do not trust in-house “lab reports and certificates “ to make the determination on origin, treatment or color quality.
 

Arcadian

Ideal_Rock
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And looking at other Burmese rubies stocked by Leibish...graded as pigeon blood but almost wine-colour dark red to me (is that normal?), and do I see a lot of extinctions on the edges of the table? At least no surface-reaching fissures I can see...


I'm about to be unkind, but I've seen redder Rhodolite Garnets. The color of that stone is just....not pleasing. This is where what the lab says versus what eyes are seeing can be a wide girth.

Honestly you (general you) will like what you like, and if dark red is your thing, then it is. And honestly there's nothing WRONG with dark red stones (I have 2) but some of these so called rubies are going for thousands and they look like dreck. Hell at least they should be cut well!
 

distracts

Ideal_Rock
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Not sure if this has been mentioned, but what bothers me is the fact that origin was not requested on the GIA report. If the origin is so important and intrinsic to the value of a stone, in this case, a ruby, then why not ask GIA to specify it??

I do not trust in-house “lab reports and certificates “ to make the determination on origin, treatment or color quality.

I agree. If the origin is supposed to be important and carries a premium, then I expect to see it on the lab report. If it is not, and if the vendor doesn't guarantee that if I get a lab report with origin and it comes back different I can return for full refund, then I have as much confidence in the stone's origin as the vendor does, which is none. If the vendor isn't willing to put their money behind their promises, why should I be?
 
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