Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 13

Thread: Help ID'ing gemstone in vintage ring

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Location
    Birmingham, UK
    Posts
    188

    Default Help ID'ing gemstone in vintage ring

    First of all, I was given this ring by one of my fathers' customers years ago and have had it sat at the back of a drawer for quite some time as it certainly isn't my taste.

    According to the hallmark, the ring is 9 carat gold and was hallmarked in 1970 in Birmingham. The makers mark says 'P&W'. However, I am not 100% sure of the stone. It is an emerald cut smoky brownish grey coloured stone with an olive hue under the camera flash. The finish seems to have dulled over the years and could probably do with being re-polished but the question is, what exactly is it? My gut feeling says smoky topaz as I wouldn't personally like to set a smoky quartz or other quartz type stone in a prong setting like this. What does everyone else think? Any other suggestions?

    Apologies for the not so brilliant phone pics, I was too lazy to get out my dslr. Apologies also for the grubby jewellery making hands!
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails IMG_20130115_093831.jpg   IMG_20130115_094041.jpg   IMG_20130115_094117.jpg  

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Posts
    68

    Default

    I would say smoky quartz, but I have no experience of smoky topaz, so not sure how similar the two are.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Posts
    199

    Default

    My thoughts were smoky quartz too but I'm not an expert....

    Sonia
    x

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Location
    Birmingham, UK
    Posts
    188

    Default

    Thanks for the suggestions

    The reason I thought smoky topaz rather than smoky quartz is that smoky quartz is comparatively slightly 'softer' on the Mohs scale compared to topaz (although topaz can still be fragile despite it's comparative hardness) therefore would probably not be as suitable in a fairly unprotected prong setting like this one. Also, you don't very often see quartz stones set in gold. Topaz is much more commonly found in gold settings. But it could be either and without lab equipment I'm not sure how to tell the difference. Hmmm, I wonder!

    I only really wanted to know out of curiosity as I really don't like the ring, it's possibly one of the ugliest rings I've seen. I was planning on dismantling it and using the gold but maybe someone, somewhere would wear it!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Posts
    84

    Default

    I know this is a bit late...but I did some research a while back when I'd bought some briolettes labelled smoky topaz and found that smoky topaz IS smoky quartz - just one of those old-name-confusion things. So your stone is probably quartz, though it looks like it could be a rather nice one. It is a very ugly ring, I agree!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Location
    Birmingham, UK
    Posts
    188

    Default

    Eirish, there is a smoky coloured brown topaz but anything described as 'smoky topaz' is often just mis-sold smoky quartz. Yes, smoky topaz is a misnomer but there is material out there that is a smoky brown/grey colour, probably as the result of heat treatment. I should have described it as golden brown topaz to avoid confusion

    I have sold the ring now because it was soooo ugly and sadly (but good for me) it just went into the scrap pot to buy me some more tools. Still not 100% sure of the stone, I did do a scratch test and it appears to be more likely to be a topaz as it left a mark on some quartz I had lying around. Either way, the actual ring was hideous and I would never have worn it!
    Last edited by silken; 20-02-2013 at 01:49 PM.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Posts
    84

    Default

    Oh yes, I know there's brown topaz, my mother's engagement ring is a golden-brown topaz. But it's not anything like that smoky grey-brown colour. Still, if it scratches quartz it might be topaz indeed, and goodness knows I'm no expert.

    Glad the ring has gone on to a better destiny - it was hideous indeed! I'm sure it will look better as new tools.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Location
    Birmingham, UK
    Posts
    188

    Default

    Someone suggested dravite tourmaline as a possibility but it does look an awful lot like smoky quartz. I didn't expect it to be harder than the quartz I tested it on which is why I'm trying to think of other suggestions. I have seen genuine topaz material of this colour before that has been heat treated though so who knows! I'm just glad it's gone to the big melting pot in the sky...erm...well, the jewellery quarter

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Amsterdam
    Posts
    260

    Default

    If you have some reference stones, this might help. remember blue topas and brown have the same RI as does smokey quartz, citrine and amethyst

    http://www.pricescope.com/forum/faq1...gy-t10635.html

    Julian

    Quote Originally Posted by silken View Post
    First of all, I was given this ring by one of my fathers' customers years ago and have had it sat at the back of a drawer for quite some time as it certainly isn't my taste.

    According to the hallmark, the ring is 9 carat gold and was hallmarked in 1970 in Birmingham. The makers mark says 'P&W'. However, I am not 100% sure of the stone. It is an emerald cut smoky brownish grey coloured stone with an olive hue under the camera flash. The finish seems to have dulled over the years and could probably do with being re-polished but the question is, what exactly is it? My gut feeling says smoky topaz as I wouldn't personally like to set a smoky quartz or other quartz type stone in a prong setting like this. What does everyone else think? Any other suggestions?

    Apologies for the not so brilliant phone pics, I was too lazy to get out my dslr. Apologies also for the grubby jewellery making hands!

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Amsterdam
    Posts
    260

    Default

    His book is

    Title Visual Optics II: Diamond and Gem Identification Without Instuments, the Hodgkinson Method
    Author Alan Hodgkinson
    Publisher Richard B. Drucker, 1999
    ISBN 0964173344, 9780964173347
    Length 77 pages

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •