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  1. Not yet, neil. i knew i needed an appraisal for the insurance company so i was going to do that first and then take the next step. thanks for the tip on Mr. Underwood. have looked at his site already and like what i see. i had intended on going thru my renter's insurance company and see what they offered. but your point about overseas residents is well-taken. although i find it odd that location would make a difference. a ring/diamond lost in Germany is just as lost as one in the United States. naive possibly but it seems like common sense to me. do you think the type of policy (replacement vs. defined value) would make a difference? mike m.
  2. I only meant that i know it should be someone who does not buy or sell jewelry as that can create an unnecessary bias. i also know that i should be looking for someone with professional affilitations (e.g. ASA, ISA, AGS)and credentials (MGA, CAPP, ICGA NJGA). i purchased the diamond online and it came with an AGS certificate. i purchased the setting separately. I had it resized and the diamond set at a master jeweler's shop (note: saved a lot money here as the company i purchased setting from wanted 1.50 per point to set; the master jeweler did it for $35 flat).. Obviously, the setting people will not cover any thing related to the diamond. Since my fiance and I are moving to Europe early next year, the warranties and such that the companies i purchased from really are not any good for me, as they require inspection by their company (or one in their chain) every six months. None of them have any sites over in the area we are moving so the only alternative would be to ship it to them airmail from Europe, not always the best of ideas, even with shipping insurance. therefore, i am looking for insurance that will work for me even though i live overseas. i hope i answered your questions. please let me know if there is any other info i can provide. Thanks! mike m.
  3. hi all. first i wanted to say thanks. i recently proposed to my gf. the ring was a hit and i have to say that i got a great diamond and saved a lot of money using advice from this site. so now i'm on to getting insured. i know i need an independent appraisal and i'm aware of what to look for in an appraiser. but where does one go to find an appraiser like that? hate to think that the yellow pages is the only effective way. thanks for any advice! mike m.
  4. Neil, I am in San Diego. I have been trying to find a jeweler around here but rthe yellow pages and cold calling seem to be the only way to really find anyone. Internet searches are difficult, probably because of the specific-type search criteria i am using. does manufacturing a ring cost more, a lot more, no more? and how long might it take (on average at least)? it does seem that maybe i could be asking for a nickel content 8% or less. if the european jewelry market feels that is a low enough threshold to prevent allergic reactions, maybe that is a good sign. but again, my experience thus far has shown me that the salespeople generally do not know the content or how to find it, therefore they tend to steer the conversation towards platinum and a bigger commission. once i continue to press them on the content, they eventually pass the buck by blaming the manufacturer for not providing the info i am looking for. i guess palladium might be the way to go. it just seems like i will be selling the palladium to my girl, much like trying to convince someone that a "generic" brand of a product is different from a brand name product only because of its packaging, not because the product is any worse. i hope that makes sense. as always, i will appreciate any input/advice. thanks very much! hope your Easter was fantastic. mike
  5. Well, I went back to a bunch of different places, from large chains to local independent stores. Every time i asked about non-nickel white gold and manufacturer alloy content, I received the same look of implied stupidity (and i mean every time). Everyone insisted that white gold had nickel in it. There was one place that said they could order one but that i had to purchase it before i saw it...not exactly what i want to do with such an important piece of jewelry. i have about 3 weeks before the "deadline", giving myself a week buffer to get the diamond set and all. if i have to delay the proposal any longer than that with lame excuses, my girl is going to be very upset (not your problem but i just want to get across my motivation). i thought buying the diamond was the hardest part but wow, was i wrong! i really do not want to go online to buy the setting because it means i have to send my hard-earned diamond through the mail. Although insurance and registered mail will cover any monetary losses, none of that will make a difference if I have to delay proposing any longer. Talk about sucking the romance out of something that is supposed to be all about love. Help! Any advice at all? Thanks! Mike
  6. i had thought to propose to my gf of four years at a nice restaurant. then a close female friend informed me that most women do not want to be proposed to in a restaurant ( i guess it has something to do with all the people in a close environment). would anyone like to weigh in on that statement? i also thought about the beach (we live in san diego) but if a woman does not like the element of people in a restaurant, how could the beach be any more private? we are saving for a move to Germany so the budget is limited but i would welcome any suggestions. maybe i could combine a couple or more and come up with something cool. she is low-maintenance and does not require a complicated proposal but i would like to make it special in some small way...not just "here's the ocean, here's a ring, wanna?" so i guess that's kinda two questions, huh? oh well, please let me know. Thanks! mike m
  7. Neil, Jan, Thanks very much for all the helpful info/insight. I will definitely be going back to check on the white gold again and ask about the alloys used. Platinum was not really in my budget and I have been stuck for 5 days wondering what to do about it. Now i think i see a light at the end... thanks again and have a great St. Patrick's Day! Remember that St. Patrick was not Irish!
  8. Thanks for replying Jan. The ring is not a designer setting. I did not think to take down any specifics about the ring like weight; it did not occur to me to ask that question. I was more focused on the thickness of the band (medium thickness based on my gf's fingers). I should have asked about the platinum content, though. Next time, I will ask a bunch of questions. The setting has no special features. My gf wants a classic solitaire setting. I am going with four prongs although I have looked at six. I believe the salesperson referred to the $600 ring as a "princess" setting but I might be recalling in error. Will definitely take note next time around. The palladium alternative is a great idea. I did not know about that metal. I have been reading up on it since you posted and it seems like a viable alternative. I also read that some white gold rings use palladium instead of nickel as an alloy so it might be worthwhile to ask a salesperson about it; however it has been my experience that most salespeople know very little beyond price and the rote replies they are trained to give (i have been a little frustrated lately about salespeople, sorry). mike m.
  9. Hi all! First, I wanted to thank you for all the advice I see on here. When I first started looking for an engagement ring, I did not do any real research. Combined with my inherent distrust in sales people, you can imagine I was not really achieving anything. After I found this site and read through A LOT of topics, I went back to looking armed with a notebook and questions. I wish I could describe the looks on some of the faces of the salespeople . I found a great diamond and now I am looking for a setting. I had read that white gold contains a small amount of nickel (generally no more than 10%). My gf has a mild allergy to nickel so I am not sure if that amount will affect her or not. To be safe, I am looking into platinum settings (if you have input on the white gold/nickel issue, I would appreciate it, though). So now I have been to several stores. One store had a setting for a price of ~ $1200. Another store had one for ~$600. I asked the salesperson at the second store about the difference in price. He assured me it had nothing to do with the quality of the metal and was more to do about the difference in stores. Is this true? It seems like such a large difference in price that I am automatically suspicious. I do not want to put my hard-earned diamond on a cheap setting. Can there be differences in the platinum that affect the cost? Thanks again for all the advice and help! I really appreciate it. Mike M.
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