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Emerald Faceting Information

Practical tips on Emerald Facet / Faceting Information. Covers Emerald Facet / Faceting Information related issues, news, research, tips, and guide.


Emerald (Beryl)

emerald faceting information
Zambian emeralds

Color: Green
Mohs Hardness: 7.5-8
Refractive Index: 1.57-1.60
Critical Angle: 39.87°
Specific Gravity: 2.65-2.75
Cleavage: None
Fracture: Conchoidal, tough
Dispersion: 0.014
Heat Sensitivity: Yes, especially depending on treatments
Birefringence (double refraction): Weak (0.006-0.009)
Crystal Structure: Hexagonal

Treatments: Almost all emeralds are treated to improve color and durability. Assume that any emerald you see is treated. I personally do not agree with a lot of the treatments used on emeralds. Here is an article on emerald treatments and my opinion on them.

Are all Emeralds treated and what is your opinion?

What I prefer to polishing with: Cerium oxide with a Spectra Ultralap.

Jeff's Comments: I seldom cut emeralds, most of the rough is low quality in my opinion and I do not like to cut oiled, or opticoned rough. If you want to cut some for the color, I suggest cutting man-made emerald.

Design Notes: Mostly emerald cuts and step cuts because the crystals are usually small long and narrow.

Design Links: Signature #4 - This is one of my favorite cuts in beryl
Blue Ice - Designed for very long crystals

Jeff R. Graham

The late Jeff Graham was a prolific faceter, creator of many original faceting designs, and the author of several highly-regarded instructional faceting books such as Gram Faceting Designs.

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