Another online auction - (not on pearls) my experience with borderline value


Well-known member
Apr 5, 2008
Hello Everyone -

I recently purchased an antique ring from a seller on . Overall I am satisfied with the value to dollars paid relationship for what I purchased but I have something to share about the experience which may be of value. If I had paid any more I would have demanded a refund and returned the item because there were deviations between the stated description and reality. I waited until this ring was on a big sale, so the original asking price kept it out of my acceptable range for risk with online sellers who don't include a GG (or G Pearls) appraisal on fine jewelery.

Before purchasing, I was very careful and inquired about a GG's report on what the seller stated about this ring. There was no appraisal available or report on the stone but a GG had in fact looked at it according to the seller (whatever that means). The seller is reputable enough that, for the $250 I paid, the 18k setting alone could be worth it; I had no reason to doubt the gold purity. I also carefully asked about the gem clarity and was told there were no issues. When I received the ring I headed over to a local B&M jewelry store where I could look through a nifty GIA instruments microscope at it; all things appeared correct except the clarity and a detail about the wear on the metal. The clarity was not in keeping with the professed "a-OK" and that kind of omission/misrepresentation is akin to saying a pearl has a flawless surface as opposed to being moderately blemished or "round" when it's egg shaped.

So I just wrote the following email to the seller. Who knows where it will go:

Hello XX -
Thanks for this lovely ring. I learned a couple things after giving this a thorough cleaning I thought you should know. You didn't have anything in your notes from the GG's review but there is, in fact, a sizeable inclusion in the stone which presents in addition to the color zoning which your photos showed. For the price I paid, I feel fine about it, but my concern is that the Graduate Gemologist didn't give you the full story. This kind of information should have been included in your notes so that you could include it in your product description. Also, there are two locations which indicate previous metal work was performed on this piece; tool marks which diminish the value and integrity of the ornament. Totally fine, again, for the price I paid and expected in an antique - but not included in the notes about this. These are not wear marks but from work done.
Please do not get the wrong impression. I truly like this piece and am satisfied with the value I got. I do think. however, that you did not have as much information about this as you should from your Graduate Gemologist. I realize that they might not have been motivated to be thorough without getting paid to do an appraisal, but gemstones are graded with the naked eye, not under magnification, so relatively simple to do. Origin is indicated only from a look under magnification and this does appear to be of a "Ceylon type" which was either the gemologist's guess or from looking via magnification. It's an important point because even without cleaning, the inclusion is visible under a 10x view.
I hope this information is useful for you.
Heidi X
I guess this echoes the point I made on "another newbie, another question.." - if when you receive the goods, they differ from your expectation, then it comes down to whether or not you think you still got value for your money. If you feel OK about what you've paid for what you received - all is good.