Our November Meeting Gem Enhancement with David Bellamy

Gem Enhancement with David Bellamy When precious or semi-precious minerals are mined from the earth, they usually have a general crystallographic shape. The stones are then transformed from their natural […]

Gem Enhancement with David Bellamy

David, with his periodic table disp;ay

David, with his periodic table display

When precious or semi-precious minerals are mined from the earth, they usually have a general crystallographic shape. The stones are then transformed from their natural state into gems by means of various cutting and polishing techniques. The techniques  allow an optimum amount of light to be reflected in and out of the stone. The  gemstones are may then be further treated. Gemstone enhancement has existed for over 2000 years in one form or another. Certain procedures are applied to enhance or improve their appearance, and for their wear-ability.  The type of enhancement will depends on the characteristics of the stone and the desired effect.

David Bellamy will discuss the ways that gemstones are enhanced and thus more appealing to buyers:

  • Heating: e.g. rubies
  • Bleaching e.g. jade
  • Oiling : g. emeralds
  • Irradiating: e.g. topaz
  • Dyeing: e.g. pearls
  • Waxing e.g. lapis
  • Coating: g. colourless gems
  • Diffusion: Sapphire
  • Filling: g. diamonds
  • Lasering replacing inclusions

Bear in mind that all enhancement procedures are designed to make the appearance of the gems more appealing; it does not mean that certain practices are always ethical. Unfortunately misrepresentation, nondisclosure, and outright fraud does occur in the industry. The best advice for buyers is caveat emptor, let the buyer beware.

David Bellamy is a long term member of our club, and in addition to many contributions to our club, he is a frequent speaker at our monthly meetings.  He is currently a member of the club’s Board of Director. David is an avid mineral and gem collector and is a science collector.


The  photo is by Geoffrey Dominy, Vancouver B.C.  and published the Jewellery Business Advisor



Directions to our Meetings

  • Where:Knox United Church Hall
    2569 Midland Avenue
    Toronto (Scarborough) M1S 1R3
    north-east corner of Midland and Sheppard Avenue

    Google Map

    • We meet in the Church Hall which is the building north of KnoxUnitedChurch.
    • To get to the Hall: When driving north on Midland just past Sheppard, you will pass the church which is on the corner. Then keep you eye out for a small laneway that runs south of the Hall. This leads to the parking lot behind (east) of the Hall.
      If you miss the laneway, keep going till you hit a small street on your right (east) called Rural Ave. Turn right (east) and look for a driveway into the Church Hall parking lot.
    • The door to the Hall is visible from the parking lot. The door is propped open for the meetings. Come in the door & walk up a half a flight of stair into the hall.

    Meetings are help on the First Wednesday of the month

    Our November meeting will be held at the Knox  United Church, beginning at 8:00 pm.

    • Although the meeting starts at 8 pm, try to get there earlier – the before meeting time is often just as much fun as the meeting.  Come as early as 7:30 pm because there is always something going on.
    • Before the meeting you can:
      • chat with other members & guest speakers
      • look at the Silent Auction Items displayed by members
      • see the special guest speaker displays
      • borrow a club library book from the cabinet
      • sign up for workshops, classes or other volunteer opportunities at the side table
      • help set up the chairs & pitch in with any other administrivia that people need a hand with

      For information on our meetings  email us