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The March 2011 reporting of a big
tanzanite gem find by a leading Tanzanite mining operator,
raised interest gem and jewelry circles. Many gem and jewelry
lovers, turned to Kaisilver for information, the questions
regarding this big tanzanite gem stone were many. The news
release published by the Tanzanite mining operator, claimed
that the large tanzanite gem found weighed around 12,000
carats. This is huge by any standard and so the attention it
has drawn is not suprising.
It is important to understand the
issues raised by a large group of gem and jewelry enthusiasts.
They would like to know if this is the largest tanzanite ever
found. A young lady from Japan wanted to know the type of
jewel that could hold such a big tanzanite gem stone. A French
fashion enthusiast wrote to ask whether the cut and polished
large tanzanite stone, would have uniform color and clarity
all across the gemstone. Before answering these and many other
questions related to the big tanzanite gemstone find, it is
necessary to understand some very important issues related to
the huge tanzanite that was found. This will clear up at least
60% of the doubts and queries and give a balanced view on this
The big tanzanite found weighs
around 12,000 carats and is a piece of rough tanzanite
, this is not the same as a cut and polished
tanzanite gem. In the normal process the stone would be heated
to bring out the gorgeous violet-blue color tones of
tanzanite. The clarity of the big tanzanite rough would also
improve with the heat treatment. The image below shows rough
tanzanite before (left) and after (right) applying heat
treatment to tanzanite.
|About 95% of the tanzanite rough that is mined is
put through the heat treatment. The effect of the heat
can be seen in the above image.
You now know that the big 12,000
carat rough tanzanite rough that was found was in a rough
form. So how just how big would the same tanzanite be after
being cut, faceted and polished. What we need to understand is
that rough tanzanite will have inclusions, fissures (cracks)
and even color zoning across the piece. You therefore cannot
get one big tanzanite piece after cutting and polishing the
large rough tanzanite piece.
During the cutting and faceting
process, expert cutters will break the large tanzanite
rough into smaller pieces. Care will be taken to
ensure that each of those smaller pieces do not have too many
and too visible, fissures or inclusions. Basically the
inclusions and also the areas with too many fissures will need
to be cut away. Another task that remains is the try to ensure
as uniform a color as possible across each of these smaller
So the big tanzanite rough that
weighs 12,000 carats will probably be broken into smaller
pieces - you might end up with as many as 1,000 to 2,000
smaller pieces of tanzanite. There is no point in trying to
get 1 large 10 carat tanzanite cut and polished gem if the
piece is going to have visible cracks and inclusions.
Similarly, no gem buyer would be interested in a 10 carat
tanzanite gem that has color patches (zoning) across the
piece. So there is no fixed number of smaller tanzanite pieces
that will be cut, the condition of the large tanzanite rough
will decide that.
From experience we could say that
the gem manufacturer would get, at least a few pieces of good
quality tanzanite cut and polished gems that weigh 8 to 10
carats each. At the same time there could most likely be
around 200 pieces that weigh less than a carat each. By
general standards a good quality tanzanite that, weighs around
5 carat or more can be classified as a big tanzanite gem. The
manufacturer would price all the stones cut from the big
tanzanite rough gem. Color, clarity, size and the presence of
inclusions and fissures will all influence the price set for
each of the smaller stones. In gemological terms we refer to
this as the 'yield' received from cutting rough gems.
The above explanation should answer
most of your questions. The main thing is that there is no
question of a 12,000 carat cut and polished tanzanite gem. The
original piece was a rough tanzanite stone. The smaller pieces
cut from this large rough tanzanite would weigh just about 10
to 12 carat at the maximum. Most of the pieces after cutting
and polishing would be in the 1 carat to 2 carat size range.
Kaisilver can custom make
all types of tanzanite jewelry, in 14k or 18k gold.
We can infact custom make silver tanzanite jewelry too. The
designs for your tanzanite rings and other tanzanite gem stone
jewelry can be yours or ours. We procure all tanzanite gems
from the Tanzanian mines and custom cut the gems ourselves.
This will not only reduce multiple commissions through
multiple middlemen but, also ensure that you get a natural
tanzanite gemstone and not a factory made substitute. Our
support team can be contacted at email@example.com with any
questions or requirements that you might have.
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