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BUYING CHINA, Procced with extreme caution

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MessofRocks
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« Reply #30 on: June 07, 2013, 03:34:41 am »

I am confused about buying or trading from China. I say this because where I live I could be in China in twenty-five minutes or Little Korea in fifteen. With what I am reading about trading with international countries there is a niche to be filled by someone who knows what to buy.

In my early twenties, I was for a brief moment an “International trader” for imports and export business. Nevertheless, I have learned a few things about trading that I am now trying to recall.

Anyhow, if there is anything you want from other countries all you have to do is contact a reputable “International Trading” company and one that has vast of imports in particular products you may want. Occasionally even if they don’t carry or supply a product next time when their buyers go overseas and some live there already will scout for that product and a supplier. If money can be made from it, they will offer it next time; they just need to know there is a market for that stuff and money can be made. Besides that, there is a good possibility there is already a supplier for the stuff you want right here in the good ole USA.

However, the problem remains you must locate these suppliers and if you cannot meet their minimum requirements you can ask who they supply too and sometimes they are willing to give that information.

The place I go to when I want things from China (mostly spices) would be an Asian owned store, other things that are a little scarcer I go to China town in San Francisco, you see where I am going with this. If I want to make an Indian curry chicken diner guess what store I go to.

What I am saying is since this is the Ole USA and anything legal to import and make money on it, it is already here. No need to go to China or Japan you just have to find the person that is already trading with those countries.

Alternatively, simply visit Asian owned stores that cater to the Asian community and show them the picture/s of the stones you are looking for and who knows you may get lucky and find a great lead to supply a market in your world.

If I had the money and the knowledge, I know what I would be doing today. First, I would research to find out how big the market is, and then find a supplier, and then buy and sell.

Just my mud’s worth.

Billy
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Carol M
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« Reply #31 on: June 29, 2013, 10:36:50 am »

What about Freshwater Pearls????
I've bought some lovely cultured freshwater pearls as well as some [reportedly natural] gemstone beads from a reseller in Shanghai.  http://www.stunninggemstones.com/cn/aboutus/aboutus.asp

I'm no gemologist, just a jewelry designer on a hobby level, but if I'm mostly concerned if beads have been dyed or otherwise treated in some 'non-permanent' way.
Whenever I've asked Jack [the guy I communicate with there] he will tell me if something is dyed [which I often suspect anyway].
When I compare the quality [and variety] of what they have for the price, I haven't been unhappy.
I don't buy pearls in dyed colors but just stick to white [color #007], or I'll ask for soft peach or pale pink shades and they have them as natural colors.

Do you know anything about the items from him?  If 'have concerns' but don't feel comfortable posting them online, please email me with what you want to say.

As it happens, I'm probably 'full up' for now in both pearls [which I love] and gemstone beads but who knows where this hobby will take me.
I had a special request from a friend for a citrine and pearl necklace and I got these citrine beads for her and she was thrilled.  The beads were lovely.   
Were they 'natural citrine' as advertised?   
How would I know??

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Carol M
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« Reply #32 on: June 29, 2013, 11:27:28 am »

First off, I'm a hobbyist and generally do not purchase high priced rough from anywhere.  However, as with many hobbyists, I like a variety of rough (into which I cut slabs) from around the world.  I buy a fair amount (less than 100 lbs per year) of rough  from the owner of HP(he also has another company that he uses to import rocks).  He has his factory in China and imports rocks by the container full.  I'm sure that he has many that are very expensive but I'm not interested in those.  He has enough that interest me and are reasonably priced.  It's doubtful that I would even consider buying Chinese rough from someone I didn't know and or have a history with.
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« Reply #33 on: June 29, 2013, 12:26:38 pm »

Ohhh, this post has yet some life in it.

Sorry cant help with your questions, its unfamiliar territory, even though 70% of cultured pearls in China originate from our backyard here.

Everything that was and still is on my mind on the subject, was said in the first few posts. Nothing has changed.

Just today, I went to get some supplies for my dremel and had a bit more time to look around. Found a piece of jade, nice dark green spinach color with typical feathering. The guy told me stories about the origin of this pice that would make a good writer of novels proud. Gave me comparisons etc., and all those ten minutes was able to keep a straight face. In the end he had the nerve to ask an equivalent of 160 US$ for an approximate 140 gram, for this nothing really special piece. As he went on and on, I let him waste his time and tried to watch other dealers in neighboring stalls. Sure enough, I caught several smiles along the way. In the end, I offered 20$ and started to walk away not even waiting for an answer. Again, sure enough, he called after me with  half his original quote.

Now, I hate haggling, and anyone who has dealt with me knows, quote me something that is reasonable while keeping a good profit for yourself, plus tell me what needs to be told good and bad, and we both walk away happy. Try to go over the top, walk into the roam of fantasy acording to my understanding, and I walk away.

As a hobbyist more than ever, I want many things, but I never have to have something.

China, like everywhere else, you need someone whom you can trust, just like Mexico or anywhere south of your borders for that matter. I love fire agate, but I will not even try to get new contacts, and the one I got in Mexico is questionable too. So I keep with whom I trust, and that' s a re-exporter here on the forum who deals with a family from whom I got today basically 90% of my material, even before he continued someone elses work with that family.
 
 
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« Reply #34 on: June 29, 2013, 02:31:39 pm »

I deal with a Chinese importer that does the local (and national) shows and I think she's very reputable. She doesn't lie about the turquoise or the dyed fake stuff. She shops and has stones polished in China and then brings them here. She doesn't fib and I wish I could afford to get her to bring me some things back; I really do trust her.

That said, a friend and I got some "imperial jadeite" off Ebay from a Chinese dealer, just for grins, and it was the worst job of polymer saturated quartz you've ever seen. We didn't care as she needed the fakes to study for the GIA, and we were curious about what they'd send.

I would never, ever, spend much money on anything I couldn't hold, weigh, look at it with a loupe and a black light. I'll spend a little, just to see what happens, or more if other people have bought from someone with good results. Even if they are perfectly honest, you always run the risk of someone not seeing something that you can see if you buy sight unseen.

Debbie K
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« Reply #35 on: June 29, 2013, 07:46:36 pm »



I would never, ever, spend much money on anything I couldn't hold, weigh, look at it with a loupe and a black light. I'll spend a little, just to see what happens, or more if other people have bought from someone with good results. Even if they are perfectly honest, you always run the risk of someone not seeing something that you can see if you buy sight unseen.

Debbie K

Amen to that.  hugs32
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« Reply #36 on: September 14, 2013, 11:17:40 pm »

Hi Kurt,

I'm new to this forum and am browsing old threads to acquaint myself with background.  In one of your early posts you mentioned the amount of American nephrite jade being sold in China.  That's really nothing new.  Most of the Wyoming nephrite, discovered and exploited in the 1930s, was shipped to China for fashioning.  Ditto much of the Alaskan and British Columbian nephrite.

The only early source of "Chinese" jade -- nephrite -- was in the Kunlun Mountains above Hotan, which was not even part of China until recent times.  White nephrite boulders from the White Jade River was the revered Imperial stone and amazing carvings were made from it.  Multi-hued jadeite from Burma , including the famous emerald-green Imperial color, was unknown in China until a 1784 trade agreement brought the first shipment to its shores.  Its arrival sparked a revolution in Chinese tastes and traditional white nephrite, while still greatly valued, was displaced as the jade of choice.

Fine genuine Burmese "Imperial" green jadeite gems sell at astronomical prices -- hundreds of thousands or evewn millions of dollars.  Anyone expecting to buy genuine Imperial jadeite on a venue like EBay should have their head examined.  They're living in Fairyland.  Most of what's offered there is "B" or "C" jadeite.  Both are non-commercial jadeite (as mined) that's been bleached and injected with dyes and polymers that simulate valuable jadeite colors.  It's worth what it's sold for -- cheap.

Some really nice jades are available like Canada's Polar Jade (nephrite) which is still available at reasonable prices; and genuine jadeite from Guatemala, which requires a fair amount of expertise to judge and value. The latter was the jadeite used by the Olmec and Mayan cultures and the source was lost until 1975 when it was rediscovered in Guatemala's Motagua Valley.

My two cents.  Hope it's of interest.

Rick 

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MessofRocks
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« Reply #37 on: September 24, 2013, 11:07:42 pm »

What about Freshwater Pearls????
I've bought some lovely cultured freshwater pearls as well as some [reportedly natural] gemstone beads from a reseller in Shanghai.  http://www.stunninggemstones.com/cn/aboutus/aboutus.asp

I'm no gemologist, just a jewelry designer on a hobby level, but if I'm mostly concerned if beads have been dyed or otherwise treated in some 'non-permanent' way.
Whenever I've asked Jack [the guy I communicate with there] he will tell me if something is dyed [which I often suspect anyway].
When I compare the quality [and variety] of what they have for the price, I haven't been unhappy.
I don't buy pearls in dyed colors but just stick to white [color #007], or I'll ask for soft peach or pale pink shades and they have them as natural colors.

Do you know anything about the items from him?  If 'have concerns' but don't feel comfortable posting them online, please email me with what you want to say.

As it happens, I'm probably 'full up' for now in both pearls [which I love] and gemstone beads but who knows where this hobby will take me.
I had a special request from a friend for a citrine and pearl necklace and I got these citrine beads for her and she was thrilled.  The beads were lovely.   
Were they 'natural citrine' as advertised?   
How would I know??

Did you know you can buy freshwater pearls from Tennessee, or Tennessee River Pearl's I never knew that until just the other day. I discovered that little bit of fact while researching this pearl for value.

http://www.statesymbolsusa.org/Tennessee/GemTNriverPearl.html





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Carol M
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« Reply #38 on: September 24, 2013, 11:19:15 pm »

What about Freshwater Pearls????
I've bought some lovely cultured freshwater pearls as well as some [reportedly natural] gemstone beads from a reseller in Shanghai.  http://www.stunninggemstones.com/cn/aboutus/aboutus.asp

I'm no gemologist, just a jewelry designer on a hobby level, but if I'm mostly concerned if beads have been dyed or otherwise treated in some 'non-permanent' way.
Whenever I've asked Jack [the guy I communicate with there] he will tell me if something is dyed [which I often suspect anyway].
When I compare the quality [and variety] of what they have for the price, I haven't been unhappy.
I don't buy pearls in dyed colors but just stick to white [color #007], or I'll ask for soft peach or pale pink shades and they have them as natural colors.

Do you know anything about the items from him?  If 'have concerns' but don't feel comfortable posting them online, please email me with what you want to say.

As it happens, I'm probably 'full up' for now in both pearls [which I love] and gemstone beads but who knows where this hobby will take me.
I had a special request from a friend for a citrine and pearl necklace and I got these citrine beads for her and she was thrilled.  The beads were lovely.   
Were they 'natural citrine' as advertised?   
How would I know??

Did you know you can buy freshwater pearls from Tennessee, or Tennessee River Pearl's I never knew that until just the other day. I discovered that little bit of fact while researching this pearl for value.

http://www.statesymbolsusa.org/Tennessee/GemTNriverPearl.html


Actually I had no idea that you could buy pearls from TN.
I knew that pearls were farmed there and the some of the best nucleus came from there, but I didn't know that they sold pearls outright.

I looked on the website you noted and still couldn't see how someone could buy strands of specific size and quality and color pearls unless you go to Tennessee and pick them out in person. [which isn't practical in most cases].
Can you post a link of where they actually show strands with prices and details???   or do you have to go there??
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Ciao,
Carol M
"Pursue Your Passions....."
"Imagine the Possibilities!"
"Mistakes are simply a form of practice!"
"People who never make mistakes.....probably never do anything!"

MessofRocks
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« Reply #39 on: September 25, 2013, 12:31:23 am »

What about Freshwater Pearls????
I've bought some lovely cultured freshwater pearls as well as some [reportedly natural] gemstone beads from a reseller in Shanghai.  http://www.stunninggemstones.com/cn/aboutus/aboutus.asp

I'm no gemologist, just a jewelry designer on a hobby level, but if I'm mostly concerned if beads have been dyed or otherwise treated in some 'non-permanent' way.
Whenever I've asked Jack [the guy I communicate with there] he will tell me if something is dyed [which I often suspect anyway].
When I compare the quality [and variety] of what they have for the price, I haven't been unhappy.
I don't buy pearls in dyed colors but just stick to white [color #007], or I'll ask for soft peach or pale pink shades and they have them as natural colors.

Do you know anything about the items from him?  If 'have concerns' but don't feel comfortable posting them online, please email me with what you want to say.

As it happens, I'm probably 'full up' for now in both pearls [which I love] and gemstone beads but who knows where this hobby will take me.
I had a special request from a friend for a citrine and pearl necklace and I got these citrine beads for her and she was thrilled.  The beads were lovely.   
Were they 'natural citrine' as advertised?   
How would I know??

Did you know you can buy freshwater pearls from Tennessee, or Tennessee River Pearl's I never knew that until just the other day. I discovered that little bit of fact while researching this pearl for value.

http://www.statesymbolsusa.org/Tennessee/GemTNriverPearl.html


Actually I had no idea that you could buy pearls from TN.
I knew that pearls were farmed there and the some of the best nucleus came from there, but I didn't know that they sold pearls outright.

I looked on the website you noted and still couldn't see how someone could buy strands of specific size and quality and color pearls unless you go to Tennessee and pick them out in person. [which isn't practical in most cases].
Can you post a link of where they actually show strands with prices and details???   or do you have to go there??

Yeah I guess that would be a little ways to travel just for pearls. I search the Internet to see if there was an easy way to purchase. I guess you have to contact the owners directly and ask them about loose pearls.

You can find Bob’s Cell and Home number at the bottom of this link. I don’t know if those numbers work or not.

http://www.tennesseeriverpearls.com/shopping.php

Strands are $15.00 to $1,500

http://www.tnvacation.com/vendors/tennessee_river_freshwater_pearl_museum_farm_tour_jewelry_showroom/
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« Reply #40 on: September 25, 2013, 08:29:51 am »

Thanks Messo,
Re buying pearls....actually I'm currently 'full up' but it looks like a neat place to visit.
There are numerous places in Toronto where you can buy pearls wholesale, in all sorts of quality ranges, but I've never been to an actual 'pearl farm'.  I've seen photos of the mulit-level HUMUNGUS pearl 'rafts' in large lakes in China.  Tennessee looks lovely too.  May be a neat retirement trip someday.  Especially when winter comes  Thanks again for the lead.
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Ciao,
Carol M
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"Imagine the Possibilities!"
"Mistakes are simply a form of practice!"
"People who never make mistakes.....probably never do anything!"

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« Reply #41 on: May 05, 2014, 11:40:01 am »

Thanks Kurt. Valuable information! I just hope people start taking extreme caution in buying from china because that would save them a lot of dollars
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« Reply #42 on: May 22, 2014, 05:29:18 pm »

Not just eBay is a culprit. The latest Holy Grail for Chinese (and Indian, and a big mix now) goods is Alibaba. In recent weeks it's become a celebrity because it's stock is going public.

I've been a member for years, looked up my fair share of items, but Never Bought a Thing.

Most manufacturers want to sell you a boatload. The way it works is you pay up front. Now, if there's a problem, they'll cut you a break on your "next" order.
The other downside is shipping which gets prohibitive with weight.

Recently I wanted a Foredom Flex Shaft. I contacted a firm who quoted me as follows:

Many thanks for your inquiry about our Foredom SR flexshaft..
The price for 1 set is US$65/set.
DHL shipping cost for 1 set to US is US$50.
 
Total cost is US$115.


This was about half of what I would pay here in the US. HOWEVER... When perusing Foredom's site, I found:

   
Please be advised that counterfeit Foredom® flexible shaft machines are widely available.
Be cautious about purchasing a Foredom from someone other than an Authorized Distributor or from us–the manufacturer.
Counterfeits are hard to recognize since they usually come with an ‘authentic-looking’ Foredom label right on the motor– just like the genuine article. Counterfeits are sometimes sold on www.alibaba.com, eBay and other websites.
The Foredom CC continues to be the most common model to be counterfeited, despite the fact that we stopped making it nearly 8 years ago. Of course, there are 1,000’s of genuine pre-owned CC motors that are sold legitimately. Counterfeits of old Series S and SR motors, and even our current SR models are also in the marketplace, as are copies of our handpieces, speed controls and BL bench lathe.

Contact Customer Service for a list of Foredom Authorized Distributors in your area.


Well, I did just that. I called and asked for the list. I found one distributor on eBay at a good, legit price and purchased it.

Hey, we all would like to save a buck, but a counterfeit is something the importers are great at - plus I'd like to know I can get service if needed.

Well, sorry for bending your ears, however I felt this was an excellent topic to chime in on.


BTW, Poorly Made in China: An Insider's Account of the Tactics Behind China's Production Game is a book by Paul Midler. Excellent reading on the subject.

I will now shut up and go away!

Bye all,

Fred
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« Reply #43 on: May 22, 2014, 05:45:19 pm »


I will now shut up and go away!

Nono!  Don't go away!
Please dispell your knowledge we all appreciate hearing things like this!
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« Reply #44 on: May 22, 2014, 07:44:08 pm »

Just an afterthought. Not all the scammers are in China.

Today my Gut Feeling (aka Premonition) told me to walk away from a Used Diamond Pacific Cabber on eBay. Replies from the seller to questions were vague... even weird... what does the fact that it shoots water 4 feet tell me!?!

Request for a clear photo was met with "no more pictures took".

Well, I took that photo and photoshopped it. When I brightened it it looked like 50% rust. Obviously worn wheels - the seller "didn't know" how long they had it - even a window would help.

Anyway, I RAN, not walked away. I hadn't placed a bid, but stayed around for the results, as it was closing soon. Well, the last bid was $1325 and the auction closed due to "Reserve Not Met". Right. Never ignore that little voice!
Anyway, it was immediately relisted and I see it over $1000 within hours. Hope someone has a lot of Zud!

Too bad the voices were silent when I bought the used Rock Rascal. Being new to all this, the photo looked good and pricing seemed like a deal. Well, after receiving it, I opened the top to see rust that would rival any of my early cars.
Live and learn. Well, some elbow grease and my new found rust remover (Evaporust) cleaned things up pretty well. Wht do manufacturers , knowing there will be inevitable exposure to water, not use stainless screws, etc. and use soon to be rust dust steel?

I'll keep putting my pennies in the piggy, tomorrow I am going to the CabKing showroom nearby. The only thing lapidary related in Illinois that I know of. I may end up becoming a machinist after all this.

Bye all, and listen to the voice... it's your experience and insight talking.

Fred
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