New Mineral Named After GIA’s John Koivula
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 Post subject: Pink Topaz
PostPosted: Sun Apr 23, 2006 10:23 am 
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An international wholesale warehouse outlet selling everything from swimming pools to floor cleaner, also has a line in quality diamond and other gemset jewellery. My local store recently displayed a number of pieces set with large pink topaz, at low prices. We don't see any colour other than blue topaz in the UK. Any naturally coloured pink topaz I've seen in the past has been expensive (upwards of $300/carat). What sort of treatments are producing pink topaz in large quantities? I bought a pair of earrings and the stones have a Cr spectrum with emission line in the red. Should this reassure me that they are natural?


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 Post subject: Re: Pink Topaz
PostPosted: Sun Apr 23, 2006 11:51 am 
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Just Gems wrote:
Any naturally coloured pink topaz I've seen in the past has been expensive (upwards of $300/carat). What sort of treatments are producing pink topaz in large quantities? I bought a pair of earrings and the stones have a Cr spectrum with emission line in the red. Should this reassure me that they are natural?


I can't tell you about the spectrum: others will have to opine on that. I do know there is natural pink topaz. Fine specimens have been found in Russia and some crystals emerge from the Brazilian mines at Ouro Preto naturally pink. Most of the Brazilian pinks are heated however and the permanence/stability of the color is termed "good" by the AGTA.

As for treatments I know for certain that inexpensive pink-to-red topaz is white topaz that's being surface-coated with a process somewhat similar to the azotic coatings used to create the eerily unnatural-looking rainbow-effect stones sold as Mystic Topaz. There is apparently a near-endless series of other coatings that yield a wide pallette of colors/effects.

I've also encountered several companies that specialize in surface diffusion of white topaz. I'm not aware of any pinks so far but have seen emerald green, Ceylon sapphire blue and bi-colored green-blue stones. There's so much demand for rough white topaz suitable for treatment the market price has gone up precipitously in the past year or two.

ROM


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PostPosted: Sun Apr 23, 2006 2:55 pm 
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This is most likely a white topaz treated with a surface coating from Azotic. The "pure pink" color is the 2nd most popular surface coating. I have sold a lot of it. For pricing, think similar to irradiated blue topaz -- much different from precious topaz from Ouro Preto.

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PostPosted: Sun Apr 23, 2006 3:00 pm 
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Also, I forgot to mention -- beware of a new treatment to pale imperial which turns the appearance into a fine looking precious pink/red/orange topaz. I think this is new on the market the past 12 months. I believe it is a new radiation treatment.

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 Post subject: Pink Topaz
PostPosted: Mon Apr 24, 2006 4:43 am 
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How easy is it to detect the Azotic coating, should this be easily visible with a microscope? I image the new radiation treatment is only lab detectable? Do you know whether the treated stones are stable or whether the colour fades after long exposure to daylight?


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 24, 2006 10:06 am 
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Coated stones are coated on the pavillion only.
The coating is easily abraded, so it remains somewhat protected when mounted.
Immersion should be a good clue.


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 24, 2006 1:26 pm 
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Hi Just Gems,
Was there any sort of disclosure about the stones included with this topaz jewelry in the display, packaging or from the sales person? Just curious, is any disclosure legally required where you live?

-Carrie


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 25, 2006 11:55 pm 
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It is very easy to see the azotic coating -- both the mystic and pure pink are applied to the pavilion. If you're able to see the pavilion, it appears like there is some type of frosting on it. I'm sorry I can't provide a better description. The color of the stone also looks different if you view it from the table compared to side-view or from the pavilion.

The radiation treatment can only be detected by a lab.

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PostPosted: Sun Jul 02, 2006 11:26 pm 
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I can't believe this is the first time I've seen this thread! And I arrived here through Google! :lol:

I think you have finally solved for me the mystery of my 16.30ct pink topaz -- when I hold it and look through the side of the stone, the crown looks almost clear, as does the girdle, but the pavilion is a deep, saturated pink. I would say I have an azotic coated stone.

This was the stone I received from GemOrbit that was supposed to be NATURAL, UNTREATED ... but they somehow ... hmmm ... must have mixed the stones up in the shipping department :roll: . Now if someone can just tell me what a 16.30ct azotic-coated pink topaz is worth, I'll know whether I got really taken! :evil:


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PostPosted: Sun Jul 02, 2006 11:51 pm 
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Morning Dove wrote:
This was the stone I received from GemOrbit that was supposed to be NATURAL, UNTREATED ... but they somehow ... hmmm ... must have mixed the stones up in the shipping department :roll: . Now if someone can just tell me what a 16.30ct azotic-coated pink topaz is worth, I'll know whether I got really taken! :evil:


:cry: Hope you didn't pay a lot for it. I'll leave the valuation to someone who sells stones like that. But having written advertising copy for a few years in my checkered past, I know all about 'wiggle words.' Maybe the supplier wasn't literally lying.

The stone itself hasn't been treated. It's still the same natural white topaz it always was. To prove it just peel the color-enhancing coating off and check.

When my Granddad was a boy his dog had fleas. He saw a little ad in the back of a magazine that advertised a flea killer that was 100% effective "when used as directed." He ordered it, paying what was a lot of money to him at the time. He received two little blocks of wood with instructions to place fleas between them and smash them.


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PostPosted: Mon Jul 03, 2006 9:29 am 
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ROM, I remember reading in a GIA article (about 10 years old) that, according to FTC, that a stone altered by any means other than fashioning is an enhanced (i.e., treated) stone and must be disclosed. If MoDo's seller said it was untreated, seems according to the GIA FTC article that the seller was dishonest -- unless, of course, it was a mistake.


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PostPosted: Mon Jul 03, 2006 12:10 pm 
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Yes, Gemma, GemOrbit told me there must have been a mistake in the shipping department and I received the wrong stone! I don't know if you remember the long discussion about this, it has been awhile ago. Shortly thereafter, they blocked me from bidding on their stuff :lol: .

It is a beautiful stone, however; I think I'll try to put it into a semi-mount and see if I can recoup my investment.


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PostPosted: Mon Jul 03, 2006 12:34 pm 
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MoDo, a while back I saw stones that sounded much like yours being offered by the magpies on that jewelry television thingy, and I think they said it's the same bulk diffusion treatment that's done to produce the Mystic Fire topaz they sell, so I would imagine it's worth about the same price as they are. I'm wondering if the bulk diffusion process could be worth a tad more than the azotic coating on a finished product, although I'd think any price difference would be minimal. Please let us know what you find out. :-s

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PostPosted: Mon Jul 03, 2006 1:05 pm 
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gemma wrote:
ROM, I remember reading in a GIA article (about 10 years old) that, according to FTC, that a stone altered by any means other than fashioning is an enhanced (i.e., treated) stone and must be disclosed. If MoDo's seller said it was untreated, seems according to the GIA FTC article that the seller was dishonest -- unless, of course, it was a mistake.


Hi Gemma,

MoDo's comments above seem to show the seller admitted "a mistake." I missed the original thread: was anything done about it, MoDo? Did they offer to replace it with a genuine 16+ carat pink topaz? That would cost them a bundle!

You may be right about the FTC Gemma; I'm not a lawyer and the GIA has some good ones (it's needed them lately!) 8-[ I was mainly trying to find a humorous side to the situation but in truth the FTC Guides can be baffling.

I have them on my hard drive and skimmed through them to see if I could find a definition of "treatment." There isn't one. I did word searches for "enhanced" and "enhancement" and they don't exist in the document.

It's my personal opinion a smart lawyer could rather easily find ways to get around some of its language but others may know better. I specifically tried to find something that addressed the issue of coating as opposed to diffusion, heat treatment, etc. It's not there unless the following might cover it, but you'd need to know specifically how the topaz was advertised to decide if it was misrepresentation:

"§ 23.1 Deception (general)
It is unfair or deceptive to misrepresent the type, kind, grade, quality, quantity, metallic content, size, weight, cut, <b>color,</b> character, treatment, substance, <b>durability, serviceability,</b> origin, price, value, preparation, production, manufacture, distribution, <b>or any other material aspect of an industry product."</b>

Just some thoughts.

ROM


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PostPosted: Mon Jul 03, 2006 2:42 pm 
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Hi ROM -- Yes, GemOrbit and I went round about trying to find a way to settle this. I must admit, I was a bit tiffed and didn't help the situation. They were willing to refund my money, but I was upset and told them I thought they were pulling a switch-a-roo since the price didn't go very high for the NATURAL, UNTREATED 12+ carat pink topaz they listed. It was a beautiful stone, so I wasn't very trusting of their "mistake" in the shipping department :evil: . In the end, I decided to keep the 16+ carat coated stone. I had paid $105 plus shipping.

So ... how bad of a deal was that? This was about 3 years ago. Expensive lesson? I'll know better next time!


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