Diamonds are not indestructible. They are the hardest substance known to man (10 on the Mohs scale), but they are not unbreakable.
If you have the misfortune of looking at your diamond and noticing that it is chipped or broken, they can be re-polished or re-cut. In the diamond industry there are many individuals that are very capable diamond cutters that can restore your diamond to it’s original beauty, although smaller. The severity of the damage to the stone determines the amount of weight that is lost during re-cutting or re-polishing. The severity of the damage will also determine if it can be set back into its original mounting. If you insure you jewelry, most policies will cover chipped or broken diamonds, either paying for the re-cutting or replacement.
If you wear a diamond on a daily basis there are many ways they can be damaged. You might abrade the stone, roughing up the top of the stone. A diamond could also be damaged during a ring repair. Diamond shapes with points, such as princess cuts, are more prone to damage than shapes with curved edges. These facts are another reason why regular clean and checks for your jewelry are important. It is best to catch any physical damage to a diamond as early as possible.
There are many different levels of diamond cutters in the industry. We have used a gentlemen in California for years who consults for the Gemological Institute of America (GIA) about diamond cutting. He is a magician in his art and can actually take a diamond that is not cut properly and turn it into an ideal cut stone. Polishing and re-cutting a diamond have the same purpose, to restore the appearance of the diamond.
Old European or Old Miner cut diamonds are diamonds that were cut years ago. Many people will take these older cut diamonds and have them re-cut into a new ideal cut stone. Some people don’t like to re-cut older diamonds as they feel they are a piece of history and want to keep them in their original state. I personally have take both approaches. If an older diamond is chipped so badly or is so poorly cut that the appearance is not appealing, re-cutting into an ideal cut diamond could be a possibility. When you go to re-cut a stone of this sort, it is best to start with a larger stone, because in the process of re-cutting you can loose up to a third of it’s original weight. Many old Rose cut, Miner cut, and Old European cut diamonds are so beautiful that it would be a pity to change a piece of history.
Re-cutting diamonds is a true art. Finding someone who can have it done by a true professional is very important. Having a stone re-cut or re-polished is not inexpensive, but the end result can be very beneficial and beautiful.