Not all jewellery repairs go exactly how we would like. Occasionally the unforeseeable happens, and while we do our best to ensure a perfect job, sometimes things just don’t go our way.
Tim Holdsworth sat at his jewellers bench, the job at hand to resize a ring purchased over the Internet. The ring was set with an oval gemstone, sparkling with a myriad of rainbow colours. It was resized to the correct size with a perfect join and placed in the pickling solution, used to remove oxidation from around the join.
As soon as it was placed in the pickle, extremely fine slivers started to flake from the gemstone. Tim, now worried about the safety of the gem, removed the ring from the pickle only to find the gem was now totally colourless. Apparently a completely different gem from the one he started with.
The gemstone was Mystic Topaz. Mystic Topaz starts its life as the colourless form of Topaz (you may be familiar with blue or golden Topaz). It is then enhanced in a laboratory with a fine iridescent coating chemically painted to the surface.
The treatment, as we found out, is not particularly stable nor particularly expensive. Fortunately the customer was good humoured about what had happened and was delighted when we offered to replace the mystic topaz with her birth stone, garnet.
Perhaps the best summary for the experience was the jewellers comments from the bench beside Tim, after he showed the ring and described what happened.
“Well, I guess its not so Mystic anymore.”
This story was taken from Holdsworth Bros newsletter ‘Pearle’ Spring 2008