you give me more information on why you favor laboratory-grown
ruby crystal material over natural?
people who have heard my reasoning on laboratory-grown crystals
still retain reservations about whether or not to get a stone
acquired by mining.
had the time to show them examples of the convincing numerous
and glass fracture-filled rubies that sell for enormous prices
(over six thousand dollars for the better quality two carat stones),
they might quickly decide against the natural rubies. During
my life, I have spent several years in Asia. Over the last seven
months, four months have been spent in Asian countries where
I visited the same gem producing areas I have been going to over
the years. This gives me the opportunity to cut through all the
hype about gems and find out what really is coming out of the
field. I spend long periods with professionals who know how to
enhance gems artificially but do not declare this unless they
know they can not get away with it . Their attitude is that they
have kids to raise and the westerners are so wealthy anyway,
what does it really matter!!!!I know there is a lot of lab-grown
ruby floating around in Thailand because of my conversations
with the owners of the few ruby growing labs in the world. They
have told me how much they have sent in the past year and, trust
me, it does not show itself as lab-grown when mixed in with the
heavy trays of uncut rough ruby. The fact is that if a ruby is
heated to near melting point, there will be no remaining inclusions
to show evidence of heat treatment, simply because they have
been dissolved into the gem. A gemologist has no information
to prove is has been super-fried. Most gemologists cannot detect
heat treatment in perfect stones with glass filling, due to the
cost of the equipment and time to really scrutinize the gem.
The gem dealer will emphasize that the source he obtained it
from is highly, highly reputable. If that satisfies you, then
let your karma roll from there.
you be so bold as to purchase a natural ruby I strongly recommend
you get it independently appraised for detection of heat treatment
at the Gemological Institute of America in Carlsbad, California.
Often when the mined sapphire is extracted, it can be a black
purple or pink color with a deep, blue vein that, when heated
to almost melting point or just over, will turn the stone into
a red or pink colored ruby! But you can imagine what it's done
to the new ruby's atomic crystal lattice. Often gemologists may
guess at a ruby's treatment, but again I ask you to take it the
Institute, or save you income and acquire a much less expensive
ruby that still grew using the laws of mother nature.
This is part of an article on heat treatment of ruby taken
from a scientific publication published by the Gemological
Institute of America.
is not the only active ruby mining area in Burma. Stones
from the Mong Hsu (pronounced "Maing Shu") deposit,
located northeast of Taunggyi in myanmar's Shan State,
first began appearing in Bangkok in mid-1992. Since
then they have completely dominated the world's ruby
trade in sizes of less than 3 carats. While Myanmar
has taken steps to control the trade of Mong Hsu ruby,
much of it manages, nevertheless, to make its way straight
to the northern Thai border town of Mae Sai.
Mae Sai ruby market is located in Ruby Lane, where
upwards of 500 people engage in selling Mong Hsu ruby,
mostly rough with a few cut stones making an appearance.
Perhaps 50 kilograms of rough on a given day is displayed
in the market; no doubt much more is stored and viewed
under guard behind closed doors.
heat treatment, the Mong Hsu ruby is certainly an ugly
duckling; most pieces look like sub-cabochon-grade
rhodolite garnet. This is mainly due to the crystal's
unusual blue cores. Heat treatment removes the blue,
as well as any silk, leaving the final product a rich,
Mong Hsu ruby's biggest liability is the practice of
glass infilling in surface cavities and fractures.
Kenneth Scarratt, Lab Director at the Asian Institute
for geological Sciences, confirms that virtually every
stone over one carat that is sent for testing comes
back with the objectionable comments that evidence
of glass filling has been found. Some dealers lose
so much money due to glass filling that they stop buying
Mong Hsu ruby altogether.
is common practice to use borax (borosilicate) during
burning. Many Thai oven use fossil fuels, such as diesel,
or even charcoal. Such fuels create a reducing atmosphere
that adds, rather than subtracts, blue. Borax is said
to help neutralize the atmosphere created by fossil
simple solution is to use an electric oven- addition
of certain gases can produce the desired atmosphere
even with the stones burned dry and without chemicals
such as borax added to the crucible. But electric oven
are more expensive and old habits die hard; thus the
prevalence of cheap oven and glass-filled rubies.
are a few treaters who burn dry, but if the quantity
of glass-filled rubies is any indication, they are
the exception. Thus traders are left to their own devices
- either trying to remove the glass by soaking the
gems in hydrofluoric acid (HF), or, when that fails,
trying to convince gemologists and jewelers that glass
infilling is an "acceptable trade practice."
consumer demand continues to fuel the trade in Mong
Hsu ruby. According to Bangkok dealer Mark Smith, most
Mong Hsu ruby weighs less than half a carat. Stones
in the 1-1.5 carat retch up to $1,500 per carat.
Thailand's Chanthaburi market, Mong Hsu rubies as large
as five carats are occasionally seen, and Smith himself
has purchased a couple of stones over three carats
for $2,500-$3000 per carat.
is from November/December 1996 Trade Journal Colored
they undergo enhancement, rubies are heated at temperatures
as high as 2000 degrees Celsius and packing silica,
aluminum, or borax. The first two substances have been
widely rejected, but borax, used as a cleansing agent
in glass manufacturing, has gained general market acceptance,
primarily because it enhances the clarity of the stone
by entering fissures and either masking or partially
example of heated-treated ruby.
The dark violet color on the left
is the natural ruby.The light red
color on the right is the side that
has been heated.
crux of the problem lies in the amount of residue
contained in the stone. A lack of clear-cut classifications
in the enhancement process has resulted in increasing
dissatisfaction over the last two to three years
among Japanese buyers, who were unwilling to purchase
heat-treated gems that had undergone fracture filling.
This dissatisfaction has snowballed into a growing
lack of consumer confidence in Thai products in a
market that commands 20 per cent of Thai gem exports.
of this matter at the most recent meeting between a
delegation from the Japan Jewelry Association (JJA)
and the Thai Gem and Jewelry Traders Association (TGJTA)
in March 1996 failed to produce any real progress and
instead left both sides adamantly defend their positions. "[The
Japanese] don't want borax used, but we believe it
helps the stone," said Thanan Maleesriprasert, manager
of the TGJTA. "exports to Japan have fallen, but consumers
must understand that all stones must be treated or
there are no good colors. The Japanese are creating
a problem because they want a stone that they cannot
find, and when they realize this they'll come back
to us," said Thanan at the meeting, championing the
opinions of heat-treatment facility owners in Chanthaburi.
contrast to the Japanese market, the report will probably
not make a big difference to traders from the United
States. According to Banker, the U>S> market is generally
characterized by mass quantity and prices that the
consumer assumes reflect the type of treatments that
the stone has undergone.
report from AIGS is considered by many the most positive
step in the last three years to clarify market requirements.
But although agreement on classification of heat treatments
has been reached, the use of borax still pits the dealers
against the buyers. Chanthaburi heat-treatment facilities
owners, with vested interests in maintaining strong
business ties with Japan, claim that even if borax
were not used, they would have to use other chemicals
which would produce other residues., and the issue
would start again from square one.
The above video presents more information on the theory behind how laboratory grown crystals can greatly enhance your electrical body and consciousness, when worn in a way that allows for wide skin contact with deeply colored gems.
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