Growing Incidence of Undisclosed Treated Diamonds in Australia

DCLA has seen an alarming increase in the number of treated diamonds being submitted as natural diamonds to the laboratory for certification.

It should first be said that diamond treatments are neither good, nor intrinsically bad in and of themselves. There is nothing wrong with buying a treated diamond, provided that the treatment is fully disclosed and that you pay the appropriate price for the diamond. Because of their lower cost and value, treated diamonds can allow a person to buy a diamond that appears to be of a higher quality than it truly is.

However, too often the presence of such diamond treatments is concealed. Whether this deception is by intent or negligence, such concealment is tantamount to fraud.

Not only does artificially treating a diamond significantly reduce its value, but most diamond treatments are unstable and reversible. For this reason, all internationally accepted rules for diamond grading forbid the certification of treated diamonds. An extremely disturbing discovery just recently in the DCLA Laboratory was that of a coated diamond accompanied by a certificate from a supposedly legitimate Australian ‘laboratory’.

Members of the diamond industry have a responsibility to consumers to convey accurate and transparent information, and each individual that handles a diamond as it moves down the diamond pipeline from the mines should be held accountable for making known any treatments that a diamond has undergone.

It is deceptive and unfair to fail to disclose treatment of a diamond when it has a significant effect on a diamond’s value. In its pursuit of consumer protection, DCLA is offering a ‘Diamond Amnesty’ for diamond owners Australia-wide – any diamond brought in with its matching diamond grading certificate will be verified for grading accuracy and tested to ensure that it is natural and free of treatments. This service will be provided free of charge.
 

Diamond Intelligence Briefs: http://www.diamondintelligence.com/magazine/magazine.aspx?id=7833

Next DCLA Diamond Buying Workshop Saturday 19 April

Buying a diamond? Register now for a 2-3 hour hands-on workshop covering diamonds and diamond buying.

DCLA diamond experts will walk participants through How to Buy a Diamond during a 2-3 hour in-house workshop located at the actual DCLA Laboratory.
Diamond Buying workshop topics include:

•Detailed explanation and hands-on evaluation of the 4C’s of diamond grading. Participants will take part in the grading process to learn how the quality and value of a diamond is established.

•Choosing the diamond shape, size, and quality right for you

•How to shop for a diamond and questions to ask jewellers

•How to read, understand, and compare Diamond Grading Certificates when shopping

•Explanation and identification of diamond treatments, and how they affect value

•Explanation and identification of synthetic diamonds, and how they affect value

Participants will have ample opportunity to ask questions throughout the workshop.
Spacing is limited, contact DCLA on 1300 66 3252(DCLA) to register and reserve your place.

Cost of workshop: $88 incl GST
 

DCLA identifies Treated Pink Diamond

Recently, a pink coloured diamond weighing 0.70ct was submitted to DCLA laboratory for certification and colour authentication. The colour was described as 3 PP on a diamond report issued by another Australian-based laboratory.

After routine examination however, DCLA discovered that when the diamond is viewed under high magnification with reflected diffused light, a patchy iridescent coating is visible on the surface. This coating is also easily visible on the pavilion facets of the diamond when viewed through the table. However, when the diamond is observed under magnification with regular diffused light, the pink coloration appears evenly distributed, particularly when viewed face up.

The pink colour is the result of a coating rather than from natural lattice defects in natural pink diamonds. Surface coating is the process of adding a thin layer of coloured foreign material to all or part of a gemstone’s surface, with the intent of either masking the underlying body colour or enhancing a desirable colour. Most often, this coating is applied to the pavilion and/or girdle of the diamond; the way that light refracts as it passes through a diamond creates the illusion of uniform colour distribution.

The durability of diamond coatings vary considerably, depending on materials used and methods of coating applied. Most recent advances in technology employ a very thin optical or chemical film which is more durable than older methods, but still readily worn away by heat, scratching, abrasion, polishing, and just everyday wear.

Coating is a deceptive practice; we do not know the number of coated pink diamonds which have entered the marketplace, but the DCLA has seen a number of treated stones of late. Of particular concern is when such treated diamonds are accompanied by seemingly legitimate reports or paperwork.

DCLA screens every diamond submitted to the laboratory for all known treatments, and will not issue a diamond certificate for treated or synthetic diamonds.

‘How to Buy a Diamond’ Workshop Registration Open

DCLA’s in-laboratory workshop on ‘How to Buy a Diamond’ commences
Saturday February 28th at 10:00am.

DCLA diamond experts will walk participants through How to Buy a Diamond during a 2-3 hour in-house workshop located at the actual DCLA Laboratory.

Diamond Buying workshop topics include:

•Detailed explanation and hands-on evaluation of the 4C’s of diamond grading. Participants will take part in the grading process to learn how the quality and value of a diamond is established.

•Choosing the diamond shape, size, and quality right for you

•How to shop for a diamond and questions to ask jewellers

•How to read, understand, and compare Diamond Grading Certificates when shopping

•Explanation and identification of diamond treatments, and how they affect value

•Explanation and identification of synthetic diamonds, and how they affect value

Participants will have ample opportunity to ask questions throughout the workshop.
Spacing is limited, contact DCLA on 1300 66 3252(DCLA) to register and reserve your place.

Cost of workshop: $88 incl GST
 

Special Valentine Diamond Laser Inscription

Cold Laser Inscription adds a timeless message to your diamond, as an expression of your love.

Laser inscription is the use of a very fine, precise laser beam to write a grading report number or customised personal message on the girdle (outside perimeter) of a diamond, which can be done even if the diamond is set in a ring or other piece of diamond jewellery. The laser inscription on the diamond is totally invisible to the naked eye and can only be seen with a magnifying loupe. It does not change the colour or clarity grade of a diamond and is considered permanent as it can only be removed by a professional diamond cutter. The DCLA uses the latest cold laser technology that allows excellent control during inscription without damaging the diamond (unlike a hot laser).

The inscription takes only five minutes, and the message lasts a lifetime. Both loose diamonds, and most diamonds set in diamond rings may be be laser inscribed.

Sample messages:

I LOVE YOU ALWAYS
MARRY ME
Jane & John 14/02/09

Certification of the diamond is not required for inscribing a personal message, any diamond may be inscribed. Several fonts are available, and a special Valentine offer is valid from now until the end of February.

For more information, please contact the DCLA at [email protected]

DCLA Trustmark Jeweller Listing

DCLA has established the DCLA Trustmark Initiative to help diamond consumers locate reputable Australian diamond jewellers who sell DCLA-certified and guaranteed diamonds.*

Selected reputable jewellers providing DCLA-certified diamonds are listed as DCLA Trustmark Jewellers, identifying themselves as stockists of diamond certificates which offer complete protection to the consumer, pursuant to the DCLA Diamond Grading Guarantee.

Australian diamond jewellers are celebrated as some of the finest in the world. DCLA Trustmark Jewellers specialise in diamonds and diamond jewellery, in addition to demonstrating commitment to a high standard of customer service, integrity, quality and innovation of design.

The DCLA Trustmark is a definitive image distinguishing diamonds guaranteed to be accurately and independently graded to the highest internationally recognised standards the (IDC and Cibjo).

Consumers searching for DCLA-certified diamonds can now Find a DCLA Trustmark Jeweller here.

Jewellers wishing to be listed may apply at Become a DCLA Trustmark Jeweller.

For general information, please call the DCLA Trustline telephone hotline on 1 300 66 DCLA (3252).


*Please note that you must ensure that the diamond you purchase is accompanied by a DCLA Diamond Grading Certificate.
 

Pre-Registration for DCLA Diamond Buying Seminars Now Open

‘Introduction to Diamond Buying’ for consumers is now open for end-of-summer pre-registration, dates throughout February and March to be confirmed.

‘Introduction to Diamond Buying’ is an affordable, small group in-laboratory diamond seminar aimed at teaching the diamond consumer how to buy the best diamond with confidence, providing information needed to make a smart purchase.

‘Introduction to Diamond Buying’ covers everything the consumer needs to know before buying a diamond, including a detailed hands-on approach to the 5C’s of grading diamond quality, an overview of diamond treatments, questions to ask your diamond jeweller, and more.

With the overload of information on the internet, it is difficult for the diamond buying consumer to know what is and isn’t important – DCLA diamond experts will outline the essential knowledge a consumer must have in order to make an informed diamond purchase.

To register, or for more information, please Contact DCLA.
 

DCLA issues Diamond Grading Guarantee Cards for Consumers

The Diamond Certification Laboratory of Australia (DCLA) announces the launch of a full-replacement guarantee to stand behind all DCLA Diamond Grading Certificates, providing complete and unsurpassed confidence for diamond consumers.

Australian diamond consumers can be 100% secure that every DCLA-certified diamond is of the quality stated on the accompanying DCLA Diamond Grading Certificate.

DCLA warrants that every diamond certified by the Laboratory is a natural diamond, accurately graded in accordance with the International Diamond Council (IDC) and World Jewellery Confederation (CIBJO) standards for grading polished diamonds. This is a first for diamond grading in Australia, and is the only guarantee of its kind in the world.

It is vital that consumers are secure in a diamond purchase, knowing that they are getting what they pay for. Accuracy and consistency in grading at DCLA provides the Laboratory with the ability and confidence to offer this Guarantee.

Effective December 1 2008, every DCLA Diamond Grading Certificate will be accompanied by a Diamond Grading Guarantee Card, to be issued to a consumer at the time of purchase.

NEWS UPDATE:
DIAMOND GRADING GUARANTEE CARDS AVAILABLE NOW, 
EFFECTIVE NOVEMEBER 20 2008

For full details, please see the DCLA Diamond Grading Guarantee Policy or Contact the DCLA directly.
 

DCLA Offers New Damage Assessment and Recut Service

DCLA now offers a precise recut assessment service on poorly finished, chipped, broken, and otherwise damaged diamonds.

The popular belief is that diamonds are indestructable, but the fact is that diamonds can, and do in fact break, chip, or endure other such damage like abrasions and bruising. In most cases, the damage is repairable; DCLA has advanced equipment and specialised software to provide a comprehensive damage assessment report, and recut analysis, on damaged diamonds.

On request, DCLAwill have the diamond recut or polished. This service is available to the trade, members of the public, and insurers requiring salvage assessment.

New! DCLA Transparency Grading System

After analysing thousands of diamonds, DCLA has developed a new Transparency grading system, independent of other quality grades listed on the traditional diamond certificate.

Transparency is the degree to which a material transmits light, directly relevant to the cloudiness or haziness of the material.

Diamonds of any clarity, fluorescence and cut can in fact have Very Good or Excellent Transparency, making them attractive stones. Diamonds of any clarity, fluorescence and cut can also have Good or Medium Transparency – light return can be interrupted by multiple features of a given diamond.

The DCLA Transparency Grading System will now take all of these features into account to provide an even more comprehensive assessment of a diamond.

DCLA Transparency Scale:

Excellent  –  Completely transparent, no light interruption, no haze or cloud
Very Good  –  Transparent, minimal light interruption, very light haze or cloud, difficult to detect
Good  –  Transparent, slight visible haze or cloud, detectable
Medium  –  Semi-Transparent, marked light interruption, moderate haze or cloud, easy to detect
Poor  –  Semi-Transparent, very little light passes through, heavy haze or cloud

Effective September 15 2008, all DCLA Diamond Certificates will include the diamond transparency.

In addition, the DCLA has also split the traditional Finish grade on our Diamond Certificate into the dual features of Polish and Symmetry. This will provide a fuller, more detailed expression of the overall diamond make to both consumers and the trade.