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diamond swap


gosheron
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how long can it take for a jeweler to exchange your dimond. (I had them to clean my ring.) I believe a jeweler took out my diamond and replaced it with another one not as good. It looks like the whole head was cut off and another one stuck back on tackie like. I confronted them and they told me to bring it back and they will let it soak and clean it again. I said no and if you did exchange it, I am coming after your store

I cant prove it now without getting a nother appraisal. There was an appraisal done in 1988 for insurance purposes on this same ring.

 

What steps can I take

 

Sheron

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Get it appraised, and it's not the same stone, take him to small claims court. Of course it may be difficult to prove that he was the one who switched the stone, and that it wasn't done before by someone else. If the diamond was certified, it would be a little easier to prove if it was the same or a different stone.

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... It looks like the whole head was cut off and another one stuck back on tackie like...

 

Sheron

The process you describe would take a minimum of 30-40 minutes with a torch, maybe less with a laser or tack welder.

 

In any case, it is highly unlikley that any B&M store would do anything like this, they simply have too much invested in their business and their reputation is the most important aspect of the business.

 

Maybe in some flea market type setup, or some third world bazarre or thiefs market this fear is more warranted, but in a B&M that has been in business for a while, the chances of this happening are slim to none.

 

 

Brian

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I agree with Brian, your risk is extremely low of this sort of thing. It’s way more difficult than people think to do what you’re describing. This is a remarkably common suspicion because clean diamonds look very different from the same diamond dirty. The process of getting dirty takes a little while and you get used to it and when the jeweler cleans it up, it just doesn’t look right. One thing customers can do to avoid this worry is to learn to recognize your stone. Most diamonds have inclusions or other characteristics that you can spot with a loupe (the little magnifying glass that jewelers use). When you’re going to leave the piece with a jeweler for repair, look for your special features and point them out to the jeweler right there at the counter. If you want, draw a map on the job envelope, include a few measurements and both of you sign it before you leave the store. It’s kind of formal but most jewelers are actually ok with it. They are probably more worried than you because they don’t want to be accused of something they didn’t do and this protects both of you.

 

I would like to add to this that an appraisal isn’t likely to help in your situation, even if it’s done by the same appraiser who saw it in 1988. There are techniques for identifying individual stones but they are pretty unusual and weren’t used at all in 1988. (See www.gemprint.com if your interested in how this is done). Even with that, you wouldn’t have a case because all you will have demonstrated is that the stone appraised in 1988 is not the same as the stone appraised in 2006, not that this particular jeweler did anything dastardly.

 

Neil

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To add to Brian and Neil,

 

Without knowing anything at all about your ring let's look at the mechanics of swapping stones..

 

Let's assume that your ring has a 1ct E S1 diamond in it.. Estimate the value of the diamond at $4500.. You take your ring in to have it cleaned and they decide that 'hey, this is a nice stone, let's swap it out'.. Now they need a stone, and your case a head as well of approximately the same size to even have a hope of getting away with the swap..

 

They replace your stone and head with a 1ct H I1 ($3000 + $20 for the head + labor).. All in the time it normally takes to just clean a ring..

 

So now they are looking at possibly getting away with less than $1500 in goods, in exchange for risking a felony arrest if caught, plus having their business ruined.. Has it happened in the past.. Sure.. But to see it happened on the fly during a cleaning??

 

What is far more likely, and I have seen this happen with my own eyes, is that your ring, once cleaned, simply looks different now than it did before it was cleaned.. This is especially common when the rings are exceptionally dirty or have not been cleaned in a long time..

 

Quick story:

 

1. Woman comes in to have her rings cleaned.. Rings are looked at under a loupe and placed in an ultrasonic right in front of her.. 5 minutes later the rings are taken from the cleaner, steamed, and handed to her.. She proclaims that the diamonds have been switched..

 

This ring never left her sight, the ultrasonic is there in front of her the whole time, yet she is absolutly convinced the diamonds were switched because they look so different than they did just 5 minutes ago..

 

I am in no way trying to imply that you are trying to do anything wrong here.. your post and concern go a long way toward proving that you are genuinly concerned.. But the stereotypical hype around diamond swapping is so blown out of proportion by urban ledgends that it causes people to fear things unnessarily..

 

You should always take the time to look at your jewelry and know it's unique characteristics before handing it over to anyone.. If you are unsure, ask, we are all here to help.. But diamond swapping, expecially fast swaps like you are talking about, are simply not very likely to happen..

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