Have you ever noticed how some diamonds just seem to sparkle more than others even though they have the same cut grade? Some even have slight shadows or blemishes in or on them when you look at them closely, some will have these only when you look at them under magnification.
When looking to buy a diamond one of the biggest influences on the price that you pay will be the diamond grading scale. In a nutshell this grading tells you how flawless your precious stone is.
How much the diamond clarity scale can affect your price
In each instance the diamond clarity grade should reflect the number of flaws that are seen. The price for each will vary too – a quick look at a 1 carat round diamond that had a color grading of G, was an ideal cut and was graded SI2 on the diamond clarity scale retailed at $4,570.
A diamond that was the same shape and size and that had all other grades the same but that had a diamond clarity grade of VVS1 retailed for $9,730. This is only 4 grades of clarity above the first one.
What is the diamond clarity scale?
The Diamond Clarity Scale has been around since the early 1950’s and the grading process takes lots of special equipment that will magnify and light the diamond from every angle. It also takes years of experience on the part of the grader. Respected labs like the GIA, AGS and EGL all have a strict set of protocols and processes for every diamond that they inspect.
Each gemological laboratory has a slightly different version of the diamond grading scale, but they all reflect and defer to the original GIA standard, so this is the one that we will summarize.
The scale is not just to record the actual number of flaws, but it also tells you how easy those flaws are to see, the size of them and where they are on or within the diamond. They can also tell you how the flaws interfere with the integrity and strength of the diamond and how they interfere with the way that the diamond reflects the light.
It might sound technical but have a look at the scale, you’d be surprised at just how simple it is to understand!
The GIA scale
At the lowest end of the scale are grades I1, I2 and I3
These diamonds are obviously flawed and these can be seen with the naked eye. The flaws will adversely affect the brilliance of your diamond and may even make your diamond too weak to be used in jewelry. This is especially true in larger stones. It is for this reason that I2 or I3 diamonds are not suitable for the center stone of an engagement ring.
Next on the list are SI1 and SI2
This stands for Slightly Included grade 1 or 2. These diamonds might have flaws that are visible to the naked eye but that are definitely visible under any magnification.
The EGL (European Gemological Laboratory) has added a grade to their scale here called the SI3 and this covers diamonds that have flaws that fall between the I1 and SI2 grade.
VS1 and VS2 are next
VS stands for Very Slightly included. These inclusions can’t be seen under low magnifications, but are obvious under 10x magnification.
VVS1 and VVS2
You guessed it – very very slightly included. These flaws are very difficult to see under 10x magnification.
Internally Flawless. There are no visible flaws on the inside of the stone under magnification. If there are any external flaws they can often be polished off with little consequence to the overall weight of the stone.
Flawless – there are no flaws either inside the stone or on the surface of the stone under magnification.
As you would imagine diamonds that have a clarity grading of IF or FL are incredibly rare, which also makes them incredibly expensive.
Should I ask my teacher to round my grade up?
I have an 89% in P.E. right now, and I need a 90% to get an A. Should I ask my teacher to round my grade up?
No ask the teacher if you could do an extra report for points.
Pittsburgh Steelers 2010 NFL Draft Grade
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