Uncut Rubies and Sapphires
Here is a look at what Rubies and Sapphires look like before they are cut into the well known gems in the jewelry store.
If you’ve been to a jewelry store before, I’m sure you noticed all the sparkling gems. But have you ever wondered what they look like before they are cut and put into rings and necklaces? If so, you’ve come to the right place! This article will show you what uncut Rubies and Sapphires look like, and you may be a little surprised!
I’ll start with the Rubies. The world’s best known Rubies come from India and are known for their deep red color. But the gems I am showing today are North American Rubies and are a hot pink color. They have a marbled appearance, but are as equally beautiful once they are cut and polished. These are ones I have mined myself near Franklin, North Carolina. So if you are interested in getting some for yourself, that is a great place to look! It’s not hard or expensive, as there are many places set up for tourists.
You may be surprised that the gems look mostly like any ordinary rock. The colored part is hidden on the inside and has to have the outer layer removed in order to get the good part of the gem.
I’ve placed a penny in the photo so you can tell what size the gems are. As you can see, some of mine are quite large. They have already been washed off, and you can see the slightly rosy color of them.
For a more inside look, see the photo below. It is of a chip off one of the larger rocks. In the white circles I used, you can see pieces of red that is now exposed.
It isn’t quite so obvious when you are mining for them, as they are covered in dirt. And most rocks all look alike when covered in mud. You have to wash them off to see any color, and it may still be hard to determine depending on what kind of gem it is. For instance, the photo below is of Sapphires that I got at the same place in North Carolina.
These stones are also quite large! But they too appear much like an ordinary rock, and do not have a colorful appearance to show what they are. Sapphires are known for a deep blue color, but these look much the same at the Rubies pictured above. So how do you tell? Well, it certainly helps to have a trained eye for that sort of thing. But when made wet, you can see slight shades of blue.
Either way, the gems look almost identical to other rocks while you are mining them, so it’s best just to keep every rock you find. Then have a trained person that works there to look them over for you. Most times they can pick the gems out easily for you, and you may have more that you thought you did. Rather do it that way than throw away an ordinary looking rock that could have been a valuable gem!
If you are interested in mining for your own, there are many places across the world where you can go. It all depends on which gems you want to look for! Simply look on-line for public mines and tourist gem locations! Who knows, maybe you’ll find a fortune in the ground!