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1  Economy / Goods / gemstone auctions on eBay on: July 31, 2016, 04:18:01 PM
I'm crying right now because a very special stone is getting NO love at all from the eBay crowd.  My wife and I spent about two hours going through a large batch of these strawberry quartz faceted stones (about three kilos worth- 15,000 carats) and found one really amazing stone.  Strawberry quartz is quartz that has inclusions of lepidocrocite that cast a red hue over the stone.  It's really beautiful and interesting stuff in my opinion, but usually it has a lot of black inclusions and very few red ones, so the effect is not that interesting.  We found one that has ONLY red inclusions and it's drop-dead gorgeous.  Please take a look and if you are inclined- put in a bid!  We started the auction very low for such high-quality material.

http://www.ebay.com/itm/162152835762?ssPageName=STRK:MESELX:IT&_trksid=p3984.m1555.l2649

There is a video in that auction but I will paste it here as well:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KFhfNgzq5SA

If you win any of my eBay auctions it's never a problem to pay me with bitcoin.  Some people are under the impression that you MUST use paypal but that's not true at all.  You can win an auction over on eBay, and in my seller's dashboard I can mark it "PAID" and it's none of eBay's business how it got paid- cash in person, a check in the mail, or bitcoin.

There are other cool auctions and more will be listed this week too.  This link always has my current auctions:

http://www.auctiva.com/stores/viewstore2.aspx?id=1950544&siteid=0&rlid=2100
2  Economy / Goods / Take a look at our eBay listings on: July 21, 2016, 07:36:39 PM
Some low-priced gemstones are reaching the end of their 7-day auction period and some are still as low as ONE CENT.  These are NOT junk stones- they are high-quality and beautiful stones from our regular inventory that were listed with a one-cent opening bid for promotional purposes.  Please take a look and note that I always accept bitcoin for payment if you win an auction:

http://www.ebay.com/sch/paragonuniversaltrade/m.html?_nkw=&_armrs=1&_ipg=&_from=

Please don't hesitate to ask me if you have any questions about a stone.  I am not just a gemologist, but I am a passionate gemstone collector myself.  I love stones!  If there is anything that you don't know, anything that piques your curiosity, holler at me!  Send me a message on this forum, or go to paragonuniversaltrade.com (which forwards to my business facebook page) and send me a note.  I will answer any question about gemstones, big or small, easy or hard!

NOTE THAT THESE 1-CENT AUCTIONS HAVE NO RESERVE.  IF YOU WIN FOR A PENNY OR TWO OR THREE, YOU OWN IT.

in the interest of full disclosure, there are shipping charges to cover the cost of the box and padded mailer and international registered mail fees.  but they are very reasonable!
3  Economy / Goods / ruby, sapphire, emerald, and diamond- plus custom jewelry on: June 22, 2016, 08:07:28 AM
If you haven't seen my Facebook page you are missing out!  Please take a look, and keep in mind that we always accept bitcoin for payment.

https://www.facebook.com/ParagonUniversalTradeCo
4  Economy / Goods / blue sapphire 3 carats, 4 carats on: June 11, 2016, 06:38:35 AM
We have two exceptionally beautiful blue sapphires at the moment- please take a look at the pictures below and feel free to ask me any questions that you have!

The first is 3.12 carats:













We also have a 4.46 carat sapphire:








I would be happy to answer any questions you have about these sapphires or any other colored gemstones.

~Dave

5  Economy / Goods / Ratanakiri Province, Cambodia "super blue" zircon 17.03cts on: January 03, 2016, 02:22:05 PM


























6  Economy / Lending / interested in borrowing 35 bitcoin on: December 13, 2015, 07:45:21 PM
I'm about to attend a trade show in Tucson Arizona, but would like to stock up before I get there.  I buy and sell gemstones and make fine custom jewelry.  I have a traditional credit card and could get a cash advance, or could apply for a signature loan, but I thought I would give this a try.  I would be willing to provide evidence of my credit scores [they're good].  If I am comfortable with you and we decide on terms and want to move forward, I would also supply trade references and client references, as well as personal references.

AMA.
7  Economy / Goods / Unheated/Untreated ruby 1.27 carats with GIA report on: September 13, 2014, 06:26:07 AM
My wife Melanie and I recently opened a new buying office in Silom, the gemstone district in Bangkok.  Some people are surprised to hear that approximately 70% of the colored stones sold in Western consumer markets spent at least some time in Thailand.  Stones come here from all over- Africa, Sri Lanka, Burma, Cambodia, etc. to be cut and polished and/or heat-treated.  Bangkok is the major world hub of colored gemstones.

We specialize in ruby, sapphire, and emerald.  Yesterday a local Thai dealer who is a friend of ours came into our office with quite an unusual stone.  As you might know, corundum (ruby and sapphire are both corundum) is almost always heat-treated.  This improves color or clarity.  If a stone is a very beautiful color when it is mined, sometimes the owner of the stone decides to leave it totally natural.  Very often because so many of my clients are gemologists or gemstone collectors we deal in these special stones.  Some people find it very gratifying to collect or make jewelry from stones that are totally untreated.  If a stone has only been mined from the ground, then cut and polished it is exponentially more rare than stones that are treated with heat, radiation, or chemicals to improve their apparent quality.

This ruby was mined in Mozambique, which is famous world-wide for ruby.  It has been cut and polished but no other treatments have been done.  You can see on the GIA report that there is a notation stipulating that no evidence of thermal enhancement (heat treatment) had been noted.  Ruby and sapphire usually have internal thermostats. There are crystals- baby gemstones- that grew inside the stone while it was forming.  These materials react differently to heat than the ruby around them.  Some inclusions- like gemstones of different chemical and structural makeup- expand much faster when they are heated than the ruby itself.  What they leave behind is evidence that they tried desperately to expand as the heat got higher.  These markers are what gemologists like me look for under the microscope.  We see that these small crystals expanded quickly and modified the structure of the ruby around them.  It's a clue that a stone has been heated.



You can see on the GIA laboratory report that the gemologists who examined this ruby saw no evidence of thermal enhancement- no heat treatment.  Because there is no evidence of heat, we are 99.99% sure that it also could not have been chemically enhanced because chemicals that enhance ruby require extremely high heat to work.  The fact that this stone was not heated is critically important to its value.  Customers pay more for stones that have not been heated and dealers here know that, so when they have an unheated stone they expect more money for it.

This ruby has a very pure red hue which also makes it highly desirable.  Stones that have too much orange or purple in the red are not as highly prized in the market place.  If this stone showed orange or purple, the report would have to express the color as orange-Red, or purple-Red, but this one is pure red.



One of the most important parts of evaluating a stone that we want to buy for our clients is seeing how much brilliance it has.  This colorful sparkle is just the ruby reflecting light back through the stone to your eyes.  Light rays go into the stone, and the ruby's job is to turn them red so when they get back to your eyes you see nothing but RED.

As a Graduate Gemologist (GIA), I understand the importance of describing stones accurately and disclosing all treatments that a stone has had.  Because value factors like cut, color, origin, and treatment have such drastic affect on value, it is our job to describe the stone as it is so our clients can make good buying decisions.  If a stone is treated with chemicals and I sell it as unheated or only heat, that is a violation of FTC (Federal Trade Commission) guidelines.  As a member of the Jeweler's Ethics Association, I have taken a pledge to deal fairly and honestly with my clients.

This ruby has a pure red hue but as you might know, modern cameras are not as precise at reproducing color as your eye.  You can see in my pictures of the ruby that they have a slight orange cast.  This is a result of the failure of the sensor in my Nikon 3200 to reproduce the color faithfully.  As the report states, this stone is a pure dark red color.  GIA is one of the most highly respected laboratories in the world.



If you have any questions about this gemstone please don't hesitate to contact me.  I have a toll-free number for American customers: 800-607-1425.  My wife Melanie and I are in the office Monday through Friday from 10AM to 5PM Bangkok time.  If we are not in the office the call goes to voicemail.

You can also contact me through the messaging system on this forum.  I have been in this business for over a decade and have consistently delivered a quality product at excellent prices.  My wife and I would be very happy to hear from you if you need information about this stone or any other ruby, sapphire, or emerald.  We also deal in rare collectible stones if you are interested.



This is an exceptionally rare untreated ruby and we can offer it to bitcointalk forum members at a very good price.  We generally don't haggle but instead we offer the stone at a price that fairly reflects its value.  Some gemstone dealers start at a very high price, hoping that someone who is not very gemstone-savvy will quickly scoop it up.  But if you want to build a customer relationship, this is extremely detrimental to your business.  When the client finds out that he overpaid, he will never return to you.

This Mozambican unheated ruby is $2400 firm.  We offer shipping to almost any country world-wide with a high-value courier (G4S Securicor) and they are an authorized agent for FedEx.  When you get the stone on your end, it looks like a regular FedEx delivery.  G4S specializes in high-value packages and insurance is available.  Please inquire if you have any question about shipping by sending me a message on this forum, or from the USA toll free at 800-607-1425.  If you are an overseas client but not in America, you can call our office at +66-2-635-8585.  That rings at my desk and I am almost always there from 10AM to 5PM Mon-Fri.

http://tiptopgem.com/

We would love to hear from you!

8  Economy / Speculation / $473 on bitstamp? WTH! on: March 28, 2014, 12:02:27 AM
What's happening?
9  Economy / Services / Help with Ubuntu via skype on: March 21, 2014, 11:21:13 AM
I need help with Ubuntu via skype and will pay in bitcoin.  If you are interested please let me know your hourly rate.  I need someone who is pretty good at ubuntu and understands how it works for basic tasks like installing and uninstalling software and troubleshooting some bugs.

Contact me at dave (at">) tiptopgem {daht} kahm.
10  Economy / Service Discussion / blockchain.info on: March 19, 2014, 05:55:40 AM
Has anyone else logged into their wallet to find what seems to be a wrong balance and a bunch of odd transactions on their account? 
11  Other / Meta / Charitable projects allowed here? on: March 04, 2014, 01:52:50 PM
If a mod wants to move my thread to "bitcoin discussion" I won't complain:

https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=497929.0
12  Bitcoin / Project Development / Can you please help Chad hear? on: March 03, 2014, 06:50:32 AM
My name is David Fortier and I am a long-time member of this forum.  I have a nephew who is in need of a cochlear implant and my wife and I are in the process of raising money to help his family with this big expense.

Let me start by saying that I am totally new at this and I am not a professional fundraiser.  If anyone has suggestions regarding the website or anything else, constructive criticism is most welcome!

helpchadhear.com/wp

Thank you very much for taking the time to visit the website!

Dave
13  Economy / Goods / Magnificent and RARE garnet from Taita-Taveta Kenya 3.04 carats on: February 13, 2014, 01:05:42 PM
This is a magnificent and very rare garnet that was mined in Taia-Taveta, Kenya.  It was mined from the earth and cut and polished; it has not been subjected to any other treatment.  As a GIA Graduate Gemologist I understand my obligation to disclose and explain any treatments so here is the official disclosure:  This 3.04 carat garnet is 100% untreated!



At over three carats this is a superb gemstone for a pendant, a ring, or to thrill the collector inside you.  As more and more gemstone treatments become part of the gemstone trade, truly untreated, all-natural stones like this one become even more desirable.  The trillian shape is an added bonus and is a very striking shape that enhances the beauty of the gem.



Of course beauty is the most important value factor for any gemstone.  The more intense the color and brilliance, the more a gemstone is worth.  A stone like this beautiful Kenyan garnet that is both very vividly colored and that has a ton of brilliance will always command premium prices in the marketplace.  



I am asking $149 for the stone and shipping via registered mail (with tracking) is $10.  If you have any questions at all about this gorgeous trillian garnet gemstone please feel free to send me a note at dave@tiptopgem.com or feel free to visit my website!




14  Economy / Service Discussion / What is happening with Bitstamp- re flash problem on: February 09, 2014, 11:55:46 AM
I can't log in at bitstamp.  It has been a couple of days now.  I get an error that my flash player may be out of date, but I am already using the most up-to-date version for Ubuntu.  Any ideas?
15  Bitcoin / Bitcoin Technical Support / blockchain.info says i have 2 factor enabled, but i don't on: January 28, 2014, 02:45:39 PM
I never added two-factor authentication to my wallet but now it won't let me in.  I have never added two-factor authentication to any service ever.  This is strange.  And the wallet has a good number of coins in it!
16  Alternate cryptocurrencies / Altcoin Discussion / Cryptsy- really does it suck? on: December 07, 2013, 08:29:57 AM
What is up with Cryptsy.com that after 9 confirmations the bitcoins still don't show up in my account?  I mean, this shit is automated, right- there aren't little people inside the website writing my balances on a chalkboard.
17  Bitcoin / Press / 2013-10-23 NYmag.com - The Age of Bullshit Investments Is Back! on: October 23, 2013, 02:21:33 PM
http://nymag.com/daily/intelligencer/2013/10/crazy-investment-time-again.html

Moderator Edited. Note: Please follow the title posting guidelines and post the real title of the article, not your atistic representation of it. Thank you.
18  Bitcoin / Bitcoin Technical Support / paper wallet/private key question on: October 23, 2013, 08:00:57 AM
I am making some paper wallets to hand out to my nieces and nephews, or rather to their parents.  I am making accounts on blockchain.info and will include the logins, plus I want to include private keys for each one.  I have found that I can view the private keys in "Base58", whatever the heck that is.  But I have seen on other paper wallets that sometimes private keys are expressed in simpler ways, more like plain text.  How should I put the private key on the paper wallet?  Is the Base58 format fine?
19  Economy / Services / Wordpress expert? Or just handy with it? on: October 20, 2013, 05:27:33 PM
Please get in touch with me ASAP.  I will pay in bitcoin.  I messed up my wordpress blog at tiptopgem.com and I need to get it back to normal.  Also I might need your help from time to time in the future.  Most important is that you get in touch FAST, don't charge me an arm and a leg, and are trustworthy.
20  Economy / Service Discussion / Blockchain.info no longer displays dollar amount? on: October 20, 2013, 07:29:16 AM
So the wallet balance is up there in the upper right corner but the dollar amount is now missing.  This is horrible.  I will go on a hunger strike to get it back.  Who is with me?
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