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Replacing Damaged Rb Center Stone In Wedding Set


randik
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Hi,

 

The center stone in my engagement ring chipped and needs to be replaced.  I had an 80 point, F in color, SI2 round.  Like any woman would, I see this this unfortunate incident as an opportunity to upgrade :)  Especially considering the diamond buying options are much different now than they were 14 years ago.  I have $4000 from the insurance company.  I am able to add some funds to it but I only want to do that if it is a really great buy and the difference makes a big impact. 

 

I have been doing lots of reading about what really matters when buying a diamond but there is so much information available that my head is swimming.  I feel like my setting requires a pretty decent sized diamond to make an impact because the center stone can easily get lost in the side diamonds. 

 

I am thinking of looking at size and cut over color and be conservative with the clarity to maximize my buying power.  For example, an I or J, triple X, VS2 or SI1.  The table and depth measurements are pretty lost on me and even as much as I have read about fluorescence I am still worried about it's impact.  I also noticed that even within the excellent category for cut some sites give a percentage grading that has a big range. 

 

Any thoughts to help me narrow things down?  Am I on the wrong track trading size for color?  The side stones in my setting are G, VS2-SI1 app. 3.1-3.25mm. 

 

Btw, I did have a chance to look at a particularly bright and clear 1.05, J, SI1 next to my setting and I did not see a color difference between the center and sides.  The cut and polish were both "very good" and the fluorescence was "strong".   This particular stone is in an estate ring and would be $6200.00 out the door.

 

Any help you can give would be much appreciated.  I am starting to drive myself a bit crazy trying to make the best choice!

 

Thank you!

Maranda   

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Hi Maranda,

There is no need to drive yourself crazy.  There is a lot of information out there and some of it can be self serving.  The first thing you need to think about is to solidify your budget.  You seem to be willing to go up to $6000.  Is that your ceiling? or is there more in there?  Or is that kind of a stretch?  Once you have that number written down, you can start playing with all the other C's.  Cut will affect the stone tremendously.  You can have a gorgeous K-SI1 look substantially nicer than a poor D-IF, so don't discount cut.  If anything, make it work for you.  There are a lot of tool and calculators out there that will drive you crazy if you only seek a narrow range.  The reality is that most of the time, your eye will not make out the difference between various degrees of top cut stones.  It would be more beneficial for you to see the stones yourself or at least get real pictures of the stones.  If you are hesitating between two stones, pictures of the two side by side can be very helpful as well.

You can definitely sacrifice color a little if the cut is there.  Some fluorescence can also help lower colors but if you are thinking about a thinking about a stone with strong fluorescence, you should take a look at the stone in the daylight and compare it to a stone with less fluorescence.  You want to make sure your stone does not look oily or bluish in direct sunlight, which can happen with some strong blue fluorescent stones.

Here is a list of such stones on the DiamondFinder: http://www.diamondreview.com/diamonds/?sortOrder=carat&sortDesc=0&fShape=Rnd&fCaratLo=1.00&fCaratHi=1.18&fColorLo=J&fColorHi=J&fClarityLo=SI1&fClarityHi=SI1&fCutLo=exc&fCutHi=exc&fDepthLo=50.0&fDepthHi=80.0&fTableLo=40.0&fTableHi=80.0&fSymLo=ideal&fSymHi=vgood&fPolLo=ideal&fPolHi=vgood&fCulLo=&fCulHi=vlarge&fFlrLo=faint&fFlrHi=med&fPriceLo=0&fPriceHi=1000000&fLabGIA=1&adv=1

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Thanks George.  I am more comfortable in the $5000 price range.  As I read your post I realized that I may be evaluating based on the impression that to get an I-J white/bright stone that will look nice with the G side stones it actually needs to have strong fluorescence.  Is this inaccurate?

 

I have considered ordering 2 stones at a time and returning until I am satisfied.  Does this sound ridiculous?  Irritating to the vendor perhaps?

 

Thank you!

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Fluorescence helps slightly yellow stones look whiter but stronger fluorescence does not give you a whiter white.  The fluo kind of nullifies the yellow in the presence of UV light (sun, office lighting, etc...).  As I mentioned, you have to be a little careful with strong blue fluo because it can have some negative side effects.  I tend to recommend I/J color stones with faint or medium fluorescence and with excellent cut as this gives you a fairly white look while taking advantage of the savings found in near colorless, fluorescent stones.  Does this make sense?

 

As for your plan to order stone after stone (or two at a time) until you find the one you like, I do think it is a bit annoying for the vendor as well as for yourself as you will be paying for numerous shipments.  This can start adding up after a while.  I would recommend you find a vendor you are comfortable working with, and assuming you are doing this online, who can provide you with good pictures of the stones you are considering.  Showing you your J stone next a G stone for example will give you a very good idea of what impact the J might actually have.  I think this will save you money and aggravation as well as time.

 

I hope this helps.

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Just one précis: sufficient UV radiation to "activate" fluorescence is only present in sunlight (or in special UV lamps: sterilising rooms, discos and tanning salons) - pretty much all interior lighting contains practically no UV (either by the nature of the light emitter, or because it gets filtered). As such, fluorescence will make no difference to the colour in most circumstances.

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In this case I think we should agree to disagree.  Regardless of uv ratings on interior bulbs, I have demonstrated the effect of fluorescence under fluorescent desk lights to my customers for the last 30 years.  I agree however that the effect is substantially easier to see in direct sunlight.

Edited by GeorgeDI
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To be honest, I think what you are seeing is not fluorescence, but simply the fact that fluorescent light is significantly richer in green-to-blue tones than incandescent lighting, and this by itself compensates the yellow tint in the diamond, pretty much regardless of whether the diamond is fluorescent or not.

 

Why do I say that? Because if there were UV in fluorescent desk-type light, we would all be tanned by it...

 

(But as you say: happy to agree to disagree! :))

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Here are a few that represent the factors I have been going back and forth between.  All around the same price point.  Any recommendations?  Thank you.

 

 

enchanteddiamonds.com/diamond/view/R112-4TN8ET

 

enchanteddiamonds.com/diamond/view/R111-PTTFRH

 

enchanteddiamonds.com/diamonds/view/R118-7BU9KU

 

enchanteddiamonds.com/diamonds/view/R124-DV3Z8G

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The 1.11 and 1.12 are gone - whether sold or on hold, no way of telling without talking to ED.

 

Between the 1.18 and the 1.24, it all depends on how sensitive you are to colour. Personally, I'd go for the 1.24: it's cheaper, it seems slightly better cut and it will face up slightly larger.

 

I doubt that once set you'd see the difference between I and J all that easily, but as I said people differ and there's no accounting for personal taste.

 

One interesting question here: who graded your original stone "F" colour? If it was a GIA/AGS grade (so it's a "true" F), then the melée in your ring is probably a genuine G, and in turn this may mean pushing your luck with a J centre. Have you tried taking your setting to jewelers and comparing different colours in there to see how much colour contrast you are willing to take?

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Between the 1.18 and the 1.24, I agree with Davide, the 1.24 is the better stone.  The cut is a little better so the difference in color will be minimized but more importantly, apart from being a bigger stone, the inclusion is substantially smaller and better placed.  The imperfection in the SI1 is more central, under the table, and seems to reflect in the opposite arrow heads.  This would be a perfect example of how comparison pictures of the two stones next to each other would be extremely useful.

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My original stone was GIA certified.  In store I have seen my setting with a 1.05, J, SI1 with strong fluorescence and a .99, I, SI2, I don't know the fluorescence on that one.  The J was a particularly bright and clear stone.  I saw them both in store and natural lighting.  I don't think either looked "off" next to the side stones.   I do worry that I may have been a little distracted by the size difference from my original stone and my tendency to rush when there is a sales person standing there. 

 

Here are two more to consider:

 

enchanteddiamonds.com/diamonds/view/R127-GRL7AQ

 

enchanteddiamonds.com/diamonds/view/R112-56AVG4

Edited by randik
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Both of these look to be beautiful stones.  The 1.13 is smaller but two shades whiter (H) and the 1.27 is larger and about $1000 cheaper.  Given the cut I would venture that the J will face up fairly white, but the H will be even whiter.  Now it comes down to a matter of personal preference.  I notice that none of the J colors you have selected have any fluorescence.

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It looks like a fine stone too, and it seems to be a nice trade off between the H and the J, while remaining at the low end of the price range. Only thing that gives me pause is the clarity being based on clouds not shown. It's an SI1 (rather than SI2) and the photo and video seem to show a clean stone, but in person inspection is the only way to be sure. You have 45 days to return it, so the risk seems pretty low, and you have good alternatives in the two ED stones you pointed to above if this one doesn't work.

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