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Jewelry, Gems, & Minerals/please send me in right direction


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Hello I recently invested in some raw/rough gemstones.I not knowing anything at all about gemstones and what happens to them before I  purchase them from my local mall, I thought I could make easy money with fast turnaround. I figured I would walk into ANY jewelry store toss them up there and BAM but this is definitely not the case! I can't even get anyone to let me take them out of the container to show them. No one wants to look at rough uncut gems, and I think it's probably because they wouldn't know what they were looking at either. I find.t use common sense and figure they probably don't even have a specialist that does that in house they probably send all theirs out to get cut and turned into beauty. Anyway I have a friend who is a jeweler...was he is retired now so I took them to him to look at. He had no equipment (fasceting machine) at his home but he stated that he believes they are genuine natural gemstones but that they aren't worth anything unless I can get them cut. He stated that I gave some very good specimens worth some pretty good money but can't tell for sure until they are cut. Stated that there are a few valuable pieces of tourmaline,malachite,sapphires,emeralds,ruby's,amethyst,garnets,red Mexican fire opal,black opal,lapis,etc. This was very exciting but then came the bad news, he said that he didn't know,anyone or anywhere that could help me. I was wondering if you could point me in the correct direction. I'd like to get them appraised so I could sell them. Can you refer me anywhere for that or somewhere to have the cut. Any suggestions at all would be greatly appreciated because I have no clue what my next step would be. Also may I send you some photos? Thank You for your time.....Monica


For most retail jewelers, processing of rough gemstones is not profitable.  To see what you really have and what might be suitable for cutting into usable gemstones,  I suggest you locate a gem and mineral store who might be able to recommend a local individual who does cutting of both cabochon(domed shape like an opal) and faceted gems. They should be able to tell you what material is worth cutting.  Unfortunately, much of readily available rough gem material is not of a high enough quality to make cutting worthwhile.  If there is a gem and mineral club  in your area, you may find hobbyists there who will be willing to assist you.  As you discovered, a jewelry store is likely the least helpful in this pursuit.  

Feel free to send a follow-up question if you have more to add or ask concerning yout question.And, I do thank you for posting clear and nicely done photos.

God Bless and peace.  Thomas.

Jewelry, Gems, & Minerals

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Have a question about jewelry repair or working with precious metal jewelry and gemstones? For many years up to December 31, 2010, I was a working professional bench jeweler, involved everyday with setting stones in mountings, designing and making jewelry, repairing and limited custom manufacture. If you work with jewelry as a hobby or as a profession, I might be able to help. I deal with the retail business, not mass production. Ask privately if you wish. See the box for that: It keeps your question between us. Please DO NOT ask MAKER'S MARKS, but metal quality marks are fine to ask. Please DO NOT ask diamond prices. See a gemologist for that.


I have extensive experience in design, service and making of jewelry. I deal mostly with precious metals and gemstones but work with many materials as needed and usable to create an artistic design. My experience also includes freelance photography and photographer of jewelry and similar items for a former employer and individuals. Design of custom items requires reading the desires of the client and being clear on what can be done within that framework...then fulfilling the transition of idea to reality. Effective communications is essential in a working designer/producer and customer relationship.

Education is English/Physics! Started in human resources, to advertising, to, what a road. I have had formal training in jewelry work and many shared experiences with top grade jewelers. We just never know were we will go or be. Follow your best, your dreams, with some discretion! Don't let the work tear up your body along the way as it has mine.

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