Saturday, February 5, 2011

A Story and a Small Ruby.

Ray's-Ring I have a friend and customer by the name of Ra, ( pronounced Ray ). A brilliant lady who live both in England and South Africa and comes to St. Maarten to visit her son and family. They all good friends of Anne and I, and we have spent many a memorable dinner in each others company.

Ra asked me to make the ring at the bottom of the picture, because she had lost the original one. She called it her  “broken promise “ ring. ( Don’t ask )

She chose different stones than the original lost ring ( the birth stones of her children) and I made it as best as she described the original to me.

Fast forward a year later, and she is at her Bridge club in England, playing bridge. The lady on her right remarks that she really like Ra’s ring and the lady on her left says that she has a ring just like that one.

“Oh”, says Ra, where did you get it?”.

After all, it is not a common design…

“ I found it in the street”.

After some conversation, the lady said she had found it a little distance from Ra’s house. ( Ra was convinced she had lost the ring inside her house.)

The two did not actually know each other, other than they were members of the same bridge club and were friends on a ‘ hello, howzit’ basis. And the the finder lady lives a few block away from Ra.

“Well, I took it to the police station ( isn’t that sooo honest?) and they said that if no-one has claimed it after a month, I can keep it. I have it at home now and anyway, I doubt it will fit you”

Needless to say, a few weeks later at the bridge club the ring in the top of the picture  was handed to Ra and of course it fitted.

Sometimes one gets lucky, but not often with lost jewellery in my experience.

Quite a coincidence…



Do not be fooled with my latest stone that I have cut in a full 57 facet standard brilliant-- just to push the envelope. It is a ruby sitting on a millimetre ruler--- and it will not make me rich, me thinks.

Sequence of finishing was pre-form and rough cut on a 1200 lap, then to 8000 on a copper lap and then to 50,000 on a Ba5t lap for polishing.

The Ba5t lap is harder than the normal Batt and so delivers a flatter facet than the standard Batt, which is quite important when the facet is less than a quarter of a millimetre.

It weighs .01ct and measures 1.1 mm in diameter.

It is the smallest stone I have cut on my ageing Imahashi gem cutting machine with my ageing eyes. But I am sure I can do better.

You got to have a really light touch cutting a stone this small. I always have wondered what is the smallest stone I could cut, and my next one I am going to attempt a .7 mm stone.

I doubt I will be successful, though, but if I am I will sell it for thousands-- ha ha .Transfer-dop

The most difficult part, ( believe it or not) was the dop to dop transfer. I turned some custom dops on my lathe out of 6mm brass. In the picture, the finished pavilion is on the right and the soon to be exposed crown is on the left.1mm-Ruby-4

Luckily, it all worked out well and now I am the proud owner of a ruby that resembles a full stop.

I laminated it between a piece of Cello tape, because you drop this stone once and it is gone forever,-- there’s no lie.



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