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Buying whole ring vs. mounting only


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I am looking at a 3 stone setting at a Kay's jewelry store. The middle stone is 1/2 carat and the two side stones are .25 carat each. The diamonds are round cut. They are all between I-S in color. My question is since I can get the two side stones and the ring for $660 (the total ring price with middle stone is $1500), would it be worth it to look elsewhere for a better center stone and then pay to have it mounted on the ring? Keeping in mind that Kay's offers an ESP that completely covers the ring and stones for life. I have found slightly better stones on a few sites for approximately $1000. I am looking for something S or better, around .5 carats and an excellent+ cut. The stone in the ring now currently only shines back silver light, while other stones I have seen shine back blues and reds. Especially the LEO cuts that Kay offers, those are just a little too far out of my total price range. Should I take the good deal of $1600 with ESP (before tax) or should I grab a loose stone off the internet and then pay to mount it? Also, how much would it cost to mount the stone? I don't know if this matters, but the ring is 14K white gold. Thanks a lot

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IMO, consumers are much better served by purchasing all components fron the same source.


It keeps the chain of responsibility re; the quality of the finished product very clear which helps you avoid the many potential pitfalls & problems that can & do arise on a frequent basis.

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The ala carte approach can sometimes save you quite a few bucks but it does come at a cost in the form of the chain of responsibility that Brian mentioned. If a stone falls out, who is responsible? The setter? The manufacturer of the mounting? The dealer who sold the diamond? They all have a reasonable argument and an opportunity to point to one of the others and you can end up holding the bag at the end. Kay’s has lots of competitors who may be able to put together an alternative offer that appeals to you at an attractive price. Talk to the dealers offering the ‘slightly better’ stones and see if they can do a ring that appeals to you as well. What do you mean by ‘slightly better’?


Kay's may be willing to sell you the mounting with the side stones and the labor to set a center stone that you provide from elsewhere and still have their ESP in force. Different jewelers have different policies on this. Ask them.


Read the fine print on the ESP and especially attend to the section that describes excluded loses and what you must do to keep the program in force. You are likely to decide that you want a 3rd party insurance policy anyway and that your insurance covers everything in the ESP except manufacturing defects (which pretty much everyone covers as part of their basic warranty). The ESP may not be as unique or as valuable as you're thinking.


I-S is a pretty big color range and they are visibly quite different. Is that a typo?


The colors that you see in the stone has a bit to do with color, a lot to do with the cutting, and even more to do with the store lighting. Leo makes some beautiful stones but be careful when you try to compare one type of cutting in one store with stones cut completely differently in a different store.



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In my opinion $1500.00 for a 1.0 CT, I – S, 3 stone diamond ring in 14k gold sounds high.


If you’re trying to get the best bang for your buck, don’t buy retail. I suggest you shop around a little before committing to this sale.


You can find better diamonds for less on many different websites. The only trouble is you don’t get to see the product in person before you buy, so make sure they have a great return/refund policy available.


I have been selling diamonds online for the past 4 years, and I know you can find a better price and more specific qualities.


I do agree that it is best stick with one merchant if at all possible to protect any warranty offered.


Best of luck to you!

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Ditto to Brian and Neil's advice.


Get the entire package from the same jeweler. After Sale service is just as important as the service leading up to the sale.

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