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Topics - Aussie Sapphire

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Tumblers and Media / Tin Oxide
« on: September 13, 2016, 07:36:08 PM »
Just noted a post on another forum suggesting that some lapidary suppliers "fill" their tin oxide with talc.

It is too expensive to source from retail lapidary supply shops as they are doubling the cost and "possibly" using fillers.

Aussie Sapphire would like to place on record that we do not (and have never) adulterated any product such as tin oxide or other polishes with "filler".  To be honest, I would be completely gobsmacked if any of our competitors did either.  However, as we can only speak for our own products, we would like to assure everyone that our tin oxide is sourced from a high quality supplier and not altered in any way.

And just a heads-up, we dont double the per kilo cost either.

We encourage all people out there to shop around for the best value but in our experience, the retail lapidary suppliers in this country are reputable and you should feel confident in shopping with any of them.


For those who follow our Facebook page, we have just put up a new Photo Album highlighting some of the specials we have on clearance and overstock items.

Go here to check it out:

Links to the products are on each photograph description.

For those who dont have Facebook, you can find the most recent specials at our website here:


Whats New at / Short break for Aussie Sapphire
« on: July 08, 2016, 09:58:50 AM »
Just a quick announcement to let customers know that we will be away from the office all of next week.

Orders received up until this evening (Friday 8th) will be despatched without delay.  Any orders received after this will be despatched on Monday 18th July.

We will be checking email while we are away so you can contact us this way but phone messages will not be answered until we get back to the office.

Always better to email if you can in any case - you will get a quicker and more efficient response.

After our biggest sales result ever for the financial year just finished, we are in need of a little rest and recreation. We will be back rejuvenated and ready to roll in a week's time.

cheers from the Aussie Sapphire team

Fossicking Locations / Boolabinda is now closed
« on: April 07, 2016, 10:29:09 AM »
Just letting people know that Boolabinda is now closed permanently due to the owners retiring.

Three Waters is still operating for those wanting to fossick in that Reddestone Creek area.


Gemstone Discussions / Post for Commercial/Custom Cutters
« on: March 20, 2016, 04:22:21 PM »
This post is for any member who offers a gem cutting service to make this known to potential customers.  We find that we do get a lot of enquiries from people looking for someone to cut their gems - while Lamberts is appropriate for some stone, there are often occasions where people want a better quality job from an Australian cutter. If you can offer this service and wish to post to indicate this, feel free to do so below.


Please, no repeat posts - just one post to advertise any essential details.  We suggest that personal information is not posted for your own security so location can be very general and usernames used in the post.   If you run an established business, you may post your website or facebook link but for those hobbyist cutters who work out of their home, be conscious of your personal security when posting identifying information.

Contact should be made through the Private Messaging system so we suggest you do NOT post your phone number or email address directly.

You do not need to post your rates if you do not want to - this can be discussed with potential customers off forum.  Please indicate your general location and what your speciality is (eg. cabbing, opal cutting, faceting, custom cuts, etc).

If you have photos of your work in the gallery or elsewhere, feel free to include a link or thumbnail images.

From the customers point of view, if you would like to contact any of the cutters posting here, please do so within the PM system. It is your responsibility to do your due diligence and be confident that a good job will be done. Please be conscious of the fact that gem cutting is not a guaranteed thing - sometimes things can go wrong despite all efforts or flaws can become a problem part-way through the job that might affect the end result. We recommend being clear and realistic about your job as this assists the cutter in meeting your requirements.

Note that this thread is posted on ALF as a service to members only. All negotiations will be done direct off-forum by cutter and customer.  Although we do not expect any problem, ALF can not be responsible for any disputes or problems arising from use of this service so please proceed carefully.

Leah (admin)

Trip Talk / For the Tassie fossickers
« on: February 08, 2016, 03:06:00 PM »
The ABC guy sent me this article today - thought it might be of interest to those in our network:

Link to the audio is at the bottom of the page.


Whats New at / Short website outage today
« on: February 05, 2016, 03:37:22 PM »
If anyone needs to access the Aussie Sapphire website today, please be aware that we are in process of moving to a new server (bigger and better apparently) with our hosting company.

There will just be a hopefully short down-time while the move completes.

Apologies for the inconvenience but we will be back online really soon.

Can still contact us via email or PM.


Whats New at / Get Ready for Christmas 2015
« on: November 30, 2015, 07:11:08 PM »
It is that time of year for our annual newsletter - so check it out below:

Christmas is almost here - the team from Aussie Sapphire wish all our valuable customers and friends a very happy Christmas and a healthy and rewarding 2016 and beyond.
To get you in the Christmas spirit, here are some super special for ONE WEEK ONLY (offers end Midnight 7/12/2015):

Free freight on any complete Lortone Saw from the 6" right through to the fantastic LS-18   NOTE: offer not valid for international orders or to remote locations within Australia (please check first if you are unsure).  Use code LORTONESAW at the checkout to claim this offer.

Free Freight on any large Lortone Rotary Tumbler from the C100-12 up to the massive C-40 - excludes additional media (some shipping will be charged if you add media or grit/polish to the order). Offer not valid for international orders or to remote locations within Australia (please check first if you are unsure).  Use code LARGETUMBLER at the checkout to claim this offer.
These saws or large tumblers are a courier job so please provide a suitable address for delivery by Star Track Express.
We currently have a fantastic special on 14" Barranca 303 saw blades - this price wont last so check it out now.
Cant Decide on a present?? Give a Gift Voucher instead.
With such massive amounts of parcels leaving our warehouse and other shops around the world, the postal system is under pressure during the lead-up to Christmas. Therefore, it is essential you order as soon as possible to avoid disappointment.
We will be shipping everyday until Christmas Eve but you need to allow for delivery time to your location. Please don't leave it till the last minute.
Stock up on supplies:
The quieter period during Xmas/January is a great time to work on your lapidary hobby - might be a good idea to check your supplies of consumables now so you dont have delays during your precious time off. Order now so you are prepared to get creative during your down time.
Shipping over January Holidays:
Online orders will ship again after the New Year's Weekend in the order received (from 2nd January).
We will be taking a break from the Phone from Christmas until mid January so we can have a bit of quality family time but we will still be answering emails and shipping orders. Please order online or send your queries via email so we can get back to you straight away. 

Cheers from Andrew and Leah Lane and the rest of the Aussie Sapphire team.

General Discussion / Pricing - what is fair?
« on: November 23, 2015, 01:20:09 PM »
The discussion on Bluey's sapphire for sale thread earlier today got me thinking and reminded me of this article I saw posted on Facebook a while back.

Why is handmade jewelry so expensive?

Thought it was worth posting here.

Obviously someone wanting some silver jewellery can buy it very cheaply on Ebay or at the chain jewellery stores in the shopping malls.  Why should they pay more (sometimes a LOT more) for something handmade?

Conversely a hobbyist selling a bit of stuff at the local markets (all cash, low overheads, often no GST payable, etc) might be selling at very low prices.  If they are just wanting to pick up a bit of cash to support their hobby (to help buy materials, etc), then they often dont price in the kinds of costs that a more commercial seller needs to include.  If you compare these types of prices to someone who is charging a bit more, then it is unfair to assume they are just out to rip you off - they may just be operating on a more commercial level.

So it is really difficult to compare pricing whether it be for handmade jewellery, faceted or cabbed gemstones, etc.  The market sets the price but since every situation is different, then you need to remember there are lots of different markets and pricing will therefore vary.

Same with cutting - we all know that we can get gems cut at Lamberts real cheap (just a few dollars per carat).  Is it worth paying anywhere from $35 to $60 a carat for an Australian cutter?  Maybe even more for an award winning faceter with a recognised name. In some cases, it is definitely worth paying extra.  Sometimes, the value of the finished stone is low and it does not make sense to spend so much on a local cutter.  Other people may see value in supporting local cutters and be prepared to send a bit more that way even though they could save themselves some money by going overseas. Some cutters may be happy to cut the larger stuff themselves but cannot justify their own time on very small material.

If the buyer is happy with the goods and the seller is happy with the price, then it is fair value. 

Some other articles - food for thought for those who sell:


Those who see our facebook page will hopefully have seen this message but thought I would post here as well.

After doing a stocktake of our MK/Barranca saw blades, we find we are way overstocked on the 14" 303 Continuous Rim size so have just put this one on special until we move a few.

Normally $360 - for a short time, these are on special for $300.

Anyone with a 14" Slab Saw might consider getting a spare or replacement blade while this special lasts.


General Discussion / Question about postage when buying online
« on: November 01, 2015, 11:34:06 AM »
Hi all,

Just wanted to get some feedback from people on postage options when buying online (a general question not necessarily re Aussie Sapphire only).

Currently our standard delivery is via Australia Post (their eParcel service) - this defaults to signature on delivery so if you are not at home, the parcel is carded for pickup at the post office. If customers request the parcel be dropped in a safe place at their home (usually with a comment on the order), we can do that via a simple instruction on the postage label.

However, from today, Australia Post is introducing a new "Safe Drop" system

More info about it here:

But basically, parcels now default to a new system where we generate the label and when the postage notification email goes out, customers can optionally request that it be safe-dropped. They need to login to their AusPost portal to provide the instructions - it is now not possible for us to add the specific note on to the label (as we used to be able to do) because the only option is "leave in a safe place".

So customers wanting the take advantage of this service have to do an additional step as system does not allow us to add these instructions when we generate the label.

We intend to continue our practice of requiring signature on delivery EXCEPT where customers specifically ask for safe drop. If we require signature, you do not get the option of arranging a safe drop. If we allow safe drop, you can be in more control of your delivery but it is a little more work for you.

Just interested in people's feedback on this new system as instead of putting the safe drop instructions on the order comments for us to add to the label, they will now have to login in to a separate system to do this (via prompts on the Australia Post email).

Thoughts anyone?
This is a system-wide change for eParcel so anyone doing a lot of online shopping may find this issue crop up from now on depending on how online sellers implement these new options.


Tips and Gadgets / water gun for cleaning crystals
« on: September 24, 2015, 01:42:44 PM »
Does anyone use a water gun for cleaning minerals and crystals?

Have a customer looking for a supplier contact preferably in Australia.

We dont sell them so thought I would consult the ALF brains trust for a recommendation.


Just received a warning message that the attachments folder is almost full again.

So it is time for my usual attempt to ask members to post pictures in the Gallery instead of as an attachment to your message.

I will do be doing a delete of the attachments folder in the next few days so if you want to move some of your photos over to the gallery, please try and do this soon or they will disappear from your message. Just to reiterate - photos posted as attachment risk being deleted at any time if I need the room so it is not a great idea.  Just use the gallery instead.

The attachments folder has a size limit - once that limit is reached, no more files can be added.

The Photo Gallery does NOT have a size limit plus there are lots of other advantages (photo comments and ratings, comment notification, free hosting to link to other sites, shows in random image box, can insert into your message as thumbnail, medium size or full size image, etc).  You can create your own folder to keep all of your photos together.

The process is not difficult - if anyone is having difficulty, just let me know and I can walk you through it.
Some instructions here:

Thank you for your cooperation.

Leah (admin)


Just to remind you, here are the entry thumbnails below.  Click to view any of them in full size.  This thread will be pinned to the top until the competition closes.

You can vote TWICE !!  The winner of the "People's Choice" vote will get a $50 gift voucher from Aussie Sapphire.  We will pick another entry at random to win the other $50 gift voucher.

Voting is open for 5 days and we will announce the winners on Sunday evening.   GOOD LUCK !!

Lefty's Star Sapphire:

Mouse's Detroit Agate:

Shifter55's Beryl rectangular cab:

MakkyBrown's Amethyst:

Fullarton's "Unhappy Camper":

Jamo's Tigereye:

Jamo's Sunstone:

Crocket's Thunderegg:

Malachi's Turquoise:

Malachi's Nephrite Jade:

A customer of ours advises that he has about 4 or 5kg of gem quality amber from Chiapas Mexico that he no longer needs.

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