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Diamond/Gem Specialist  What They Do

Just the Facts


Fabricates, finishes, and evaluates the quality of gems and diamonds used in jewelry or industrial tools.

This career is part of the Manufacturing cluster Manufacturing Production pathway.


A person in this career:

  • Examines gems during processing to ensure accuracy of angles and positions of cuts or bores, using magnifying glasses, loupes, or shadowgraphs.
  • Assigns polish, symmetry, and clarity grades to stones, according to established grading systems.
  • Estimates wholesale and retail value of gems, following pricing guides, market fluctuations, and other relevant economic factors.
  • Examines gem surfaces and internal structures, using polariscopes, refractometers, microscopes, and other optical instruments, to differentiate between stones, to identify rare specimens, or to detect flaws, defects, or peculiarities affecting gem values.
  • Identifies and documents stones' clarity characteristics, using plot diagrams.
  • Advises customers and others on the best use of gems to create attractive jewelry items.
  • Examines diamonds or gems to ascertain the shape, cut, and width of cut stones, or to select the cuts that will result in the biggest, best quality stones.
  • Immerses stones in prescribed chemical solutions to determine specific gravities and key properties of gemstones or substitutes.
  • Holds stones, gems, dies, or styluses against rotating plates, wheels, saws, or slitters in order to cut, shape, slit, grind, or polish them.
  • Sorts rough diamonds into categories based on shape, size, color, and quality.

Insider Info

Dig into the details and check out what people in this job have to say about their work.



Working Conditions and Physical Demands

People who do this job report that:

  • You would sit most of the time. There's some walking and standing. You may have to lift and carry things like books, papers or tools weighing 10 lbs. or less.
  • Exposure to pollutants, gases, dust, fumes, odors, poor ventilation, etc.
  • Work in this occupation involves using your hands to hold, control, and feel objects more than one-third of the time
  • Exposed to conditions such as high voltage electricity, combustibles, explosives, and chemicals more than once a month
  • Work in this occupation requires being inside most of the time
  • Sound and noise levels are loud and distracting
  • Work in this occupation involves making repetitive motions more than one-third of the time
  • Work in this occupation involves sitting more than one-third of the time

Working in this career involves (physical activities):

  • Identifying color and seeing differences in color, including shades and brightness
  • Seeing clearly up close
  • Speaking clearly enough to be able to be understood by others
  • Identifying and understanding the speech of another person

Work Hours and Travel

  • Regular working hours and limited travel

Specialty and Similar Careers

Careers that are more detailed or close to this career:

  • Bench Jeweler -- Duties include stone setting; fabrication, refurbishing and repairs, sizing of rings, and metal polishing.
  • Brilliandeer Lopper -- Cuts and polishes facets, table, and culet on diamonds, using table-mounted polishing plate.
  • Diamond Sizer and Grader -- Sorts diamonds according to size for use in watches and jewelry, using sieve, loupe, and precision measuring instruments.
  • Facetor -- Shapes gemstones by determining the flat polished surfaces to be cut on a gemstone or occurring naturally on a crystal.
  • Jeweler -- Fabricates and repairs jewelry articles. Makes models or molds to create jewelry items.
  • Lapidarist --