AZGem Gems
August, 2005

The World's Most Useful
Gem & Jewelry Monthly Newsletter

Written by Carolyn Doyle for customers of
The Dorado Company
and other visitors to the website who subscribe.


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Usable Gems... and a little opinion.


Jewelry Precious Metal - Platinum


This month we begin a short series entitled Jewelry Precious Metal.

The primary precious metals used in making jewelry are platinum, gold, and silver. This month we'll talk about platinum.

Platinum is a hard, white metal that wears well in jewelry.

Platinum is also a family of metals. The other members of the platinum family are:

  • Iridium
  • Palladium
  • Ruthenium
  • Rhodium
  • Osmium
  • Iridium (10%) is often alloyed with platinum (90%) to make rings and other jewelry that is even harder than platinum alone.

    Palladium is often alloyed with gold, to produce white gold.

    Ruthenium is also used in platinum alloys to produce jewelry with exceptional wear characteristics.

    Rhodium is the "most shiny" member of the platinum family. Pure rhodium is often used as a plating finish for platinum and white gold  jewelry.

    Osmium is a bluish-white, very dense metal most often used in industrial weights and measures applications.

    Most of the world's platinum is extracted from huge open pit mines in Africa, Russia, and. Canada.

    Platinum is the least used of the jewelry precious metals. It's also the most expensive... maybe there's a connection.

    The commodity price of platinum is almost always higher than the price of gold.

    That's part of why platinum jewelry is noticeably more expensive than gold jewelry.

    Another reason is because platinum jewelry is alloyed with other expensive members of the same family, where gold jewelry is usually allowed with less expensive metals.

    Next month we'll talk about that very popular jewelry precious metal... gold!

    ~~~~~~~     ~~~~~~~

    Industry News...


    A Product of Myanmar or...

    The U.S. Customs and Border Protection agency has agreed with industry arguments that cutting and polishing rough gemstones from Myanmar in another country constitutes “substantial transformation,” and therefore makes the gem a product of the country in which it was cut.

    This means that virtually all gemstones from Myanmar (formerly Burma) can enter the United States legally. 

    Imports of all goods from Myanmar were banned under the Burmese Freedom and Democracy Act of 2003, which took effect at the end of August, 2003.

    Myanmar produces some of the world's finest ruby, sapphire, spinel, and jade.


    Jewelry Dealers

    Labor day is here, and with it begins the fall jewelry sales season... leading up to the holiday sales season..

    From now until the end of the year is when jewelry dealers make it... or not. Be one of those who make it!

    You should have your inventory built up by the end of September. It's much easier to sell a finished piece of jewelry, compared to showing a photo in a catalog.

    If you need loose gems to mount, let me know.

    I just received a couple of new shipments from my cutter in Sri Lanka. I haven't had time to process and list the stones yet, but there are many gorgeous gem stones in these parcels.

    Beautiful amethyst and richly colored citrine from Zambian rough in many sizes and shapes are in one shipment.

    In the other parcel are 30 or so blue sapphires with striking deep green flash, also in several sizes and shapes.


    Jewelry Dealers Program

    Do you enjoy jewelry and gems?

    Do you enjoy talking with friends and co-workers?

    Take a look at our great Jewelry Dealers Program.

    Carolyn Doyle

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    The Dorado Company
    P.O. Box 8232
    Scottsdale, AZ 85252-8232