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Gems Buying Misdirection
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Gems Buying Misdirection

What people usually fall for

One of the most basic problems people have in buying gems is the misunderstanding of the term “ carat-weight ”. Carat does not refer to size or mass in any way . It refers to weight- which can be a little confusing to the naked eye, as diverse gem-types are of different density and mineral composition and thus weigh differently. So don't be surprised to see two differently sized gemstones of different kind in the same size. Almost all gems are evaluated for worth and classification in carat weight, which literally translates to 200 milligrams or one-fifth of a gram per metric carat. Anything less than one whole carat is measured in points, as there are one hundred points to a whole carat. You pay for the gem per carat, which means you pay for the gemstone as it was weighed before being set or mounted and respective of its four classification grades. The mounting is separate, depending on the materials involved. If you out comparing gem prices, compare them by per-carat-cost and not by the total cost of the gem. Value per carat will also indicate the quality of the gem, as high quality always costs more per carat weight than poor quality. If you are buying a piece of jewelry already studded with several gem stones, sometimes of different type, pay attention to what the label indicates. If the letters TW are written after the carat weight, then this refers to the total weight of gems in the piece. ‘1 ct' refers to one gemstone that weighs one carat. ‘1 ct TW' refers to the total weight of gems in the piece, whose sum total is one carat.


On top of that, many gems are misrepresented right at the outset, with tags that are either misleading or downright wrong. Here are just a few examples of commonly misrepresented gemstones: In the green branch of gems peridot is often used to imitate emerald and doublet gems are especially common. Anything called “Esmeralda” [green colored tourmaline], “Oriental” [a cheaper brand of green sapphire], “Mascot”, “Lannyte”, “Soude” or “ Chatham ” is not a real emerald. They are either cheap substitutes, composites of two gemstones glued together or synthetics. “Indian” or “Korean” jade , which both have nothing to do with real jade, but certainly do come in lovely green shades, are sometimes passed off as Imperial jade, which is a gorgeously expensive and fine-grade jade. Blue gems, which have always been best sellers because of the color's popularity throughout the ages, are misrepresented on a permanent basis. For example, “Brazilian” sapphires, which are actually a blue-hued tourmaline, are sometimes passed off as Burmese, Australian, Kashmir , Montana or Ceylon sapphires, which are all usually fine-quality sapphires that are expensive and rare. Sometimes even synthetic “ Chatham ” gemstones or “Water” sapphires [made of iolite] are substituted for real gems.









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