Do Not Shop at Australian Opal Cutters in Sydney

Old Aug 1st, 2007, 03:33 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: Aug 2007
Posts: 1
Do Not Shop at Australian Opal Cutters in Sydney

I had the most exasperating experience with Australian Opal Cutters. I bought a beautiful black opal from them and asked them to set the loose stone in a pendant. I had to leave for Cairns the next day, so I paid for them to have the pendant sent to me via courier once it was finished. When it arrived, I noticed several scratches on the opal, none of which were there before. I took pictures of the scratches and sent them to saleswoman who had sold me the opal, asking her if the opal could be repaired. She said she checked with the master jeweller, and unfortunately, there was nothing he could do about it. She sent me pictures of alternate stones, but I didnít like any of them, so I asked for a refund instead. She said that wasnít a problem, so I sent the pendant back to her. Then, I got an email from the customer service manager saying that due to the difficulty in determining whether the cracks had been accidental or caused by a design or manufacturing fault, they wouldnít process a refund but would offer me an exchange or a credit instead. I said it was highly unlikely the scratches were accidental considering they were not there when I carefully inspected the opal just a few days prior, and every scratch was adjacent to a prong that was holding the opal in place. The customer service manager then said she checked with the master jeweller, and he said he could repair it afterall. I was very suspicious because the saleswoman had told me she had checked with the master jeweller, and he had told her that the opal couldnít be repaired. I again asked for a refund, and the customer service manager finally agreed to process the refund. One week later, I called my credit card company to see if the refund had been processed and found out that it hadnít. I followed up with the customer service manager at Australian Opal Cutters, and she asked me for my credit card information. I was frustrated that she hadnít taken the initiative to contact me when she realized she didnít have my credit card information, and she had just waited for me to contact her again. The customer service manager apologized for the situation and then had the nerve to say she hoped I came back to visit them again!
ejhp is offline  
Old Aug 1st, 2007, 03:49 PM
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 175
Dear ejhp,
I am sorry about your bad experience and thanks for the warning but I think you were too trusting.
I would not hand over money then walk away - it was an open invitation for something to go wrong.
sunsurfsand is offline  
Old Aug 2nd, 2007, 11:27 AM
Join Date: Feb 2004
Posts: 511
With this recommendation, I would visit them; you got exactly what you wanted in the end.

I agree you were trusting to start and I now know to take pictures before the stone is set.

Thanks for posting =)
moxie is offline  
Old Aug 2nd, 2007, 05:03 PM
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 1,018
This is an interesting one, ejhp.

Although you now have a refund, I'd be interested in whether you thought the "scratches" were scratches or cracks.
If they were scratches (i.e. relatively shallow), they ought to have been able to be removed by a competent cutter/polisher without any particular difficulty. If, on the other hand, what you observed were cracks in the stone, it's a different matter altogether. In either case, it ought not to have been delivered to you in that condition.

I have an opal ring which is around 90 years old. It's a solid, I wear it every day & have done so for 30+ years.
It has no scratches, has only been repolished once, when I had the claws of the setting tightened a couple of years ago. Good quality opals are tougher and more resillient than a lot of people think. Doublets & triplets, being thinner, are more fragile; but, like you, I wonder what happened to cause this scratch/crack. Some opals do have a "crazing" in them, but you would have noticed this when you first inspected the stone, unless it was caused by extreme pressure on the stone itself in setting it.

This link gives some info that may be of interest to you & others.

Bokhara is offline  
Old Aug 2nd, 2007, 10:58 PM
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 175
It is possible that the stone you paid for, was not the stone you got.
sunsurfsand is offline  
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