The Process of Jewellery Valuing/Appraising
By Rubina Posh May 05,2017
A Jewellery Valuer/Appraiser examines jewellery items and provides an independent analysis.
Below is a brief explanation of the process involved in valuing/appraising a jewellery item.
· The item is weighed on a scale and analysed for any identification markings, how the ring was made (handmade, cast, CAD, machine) and any markings that might indicate the age of the piece (vintage, antique)
· Any wear and tear is recorded and if significant the overall value will be reduced.
· Who made the item and where the item was made is generally identified during this stage.
· All the gemstones are tested using various equipment, such as: refrectometer, dicroscope, UV light, polariscope and microscope, to name just a few. Many different machines are needed in order to correctly identify the gemstone.
· All the gemstones are measured while set, using measuring gauges which can include any of the following: Leveridge Gauge / Presidium Gauge; Moe Gauge; Slide Gauge; Spring Millimetre Gauge; Hole Gauge; Vernier Slide Gauge and Dial Gauges.
· Once the gemstones are identified and the carat size is determined, price per carat is recorded.
· If some of the gemstones are chipped or damaged a cost deduction is made.
· The method of manufacture is identified and costs for each are noted.
This process includes the following:
How the item was made (ie.Handmade; CAD; Cast; Machine; etc);
How long it took to make the piece;
How many gems have been set – setting costs; and
The costs to polish and plate the item.
· These are tallied up and the costs are added to the total gemstone costs.
· A market factor is allocated. Market factor is the figure used to accurately reflect the value of the piece to a market.
· When all these figures are added up, a retail replacement figure is generated.
During the initial identification of the item, the valuer/appraiser decides whether or not extra research or second opinion is required.
If this is the case, the client is informed immediately as permission is needed for the Jewellery Valuer to take the item out of the premises if necessary, or in the case where the gemstone needs to be removed from their setting, the client needs to be informed of the risks involved in doing so. If permission is granted, the Jewellery Valuer then takes the item to be physically analysed by an expert in the field, if it is not possible for that expert to visit the Jewellery Valuer.
What is the process for taking the gemstone out and why would this be necessary?
The most common reason is to be able to identify that the gemstone is natural and not a synthetic. Once permission is given by the client, a Setter or Jeweller loosens the metal in which the gemstone is set. This sometimes can fracture the gem and/or can break the claws which will need to be repaired “re-tipped”. In the case where the gemstone breaks the gem can be replaced with one of similar size colour and clarity whether it is a diamond or a precious stone. Once the gemstone is removed, the Jewellery Valuer/Appraiser does all necessary gemmological testing and then returns the gem to the Setter/Jeweller to reset the stone.
All processes taken to complete the full analysis of the item are recorded and anything of great impact on the overall value of the piece is recoded on the certificate.