When we discuss diamonds, we often hear about diamond cutters, but do they really cut diamonds and if so, how is it done?
In grading diamonds, there are four categories that must be considered before the value of the diamond is determined — cut, clarity, carat and color.
So to answer the question — Do diamond cutters really cut them?
Diamond crystals are octahedron-shaped. The great pyramids of Egypt are in the shape of polyhedrons with four faces and six edges. Imagine a pyramid with another pyramid bottom up underneath and you will have an octahedron. The raw, loose diamonds arrive at the diamond-cutting factory as octahedrons and must be cut in two in the middle before they can be shaped and polished into polyhedrons — the shape we see today in diamond gemstones.
The hardest mineral
Diamond is the hardest element and only another diamond will cut it. At the factory, the craftsman will examine the octahedron, determine the exact middle between the two soon-to-be polyhedrons and draw a fine line where the two meet. To cut the stone, a round, thin metal blade impregnated with diamond dust and spinning at a high rate of speed is used. The diamond is held on both ends with a special holder and lightly comes into contact with the blade. As the blade turns, the diamond dust will slowly wear a groove in the stone and after time passes, the octahedron will be halved thus creating two pyramid-shaped polyhedrons. This cutting process will take approximately 24 hours for a one-carat diamond. So now we have the answer — diamond cutters really do cut diamonds!
In the next step, the pyramid-shaped rough diamonds will go through the process of shaping and polishing where approximately 50% of their volume will be lost. This will be a long process as the 57 facets will be ground into specific dimensions and polished to perfection.
It takes many calculations
It took a mathematician to figure out the precise angles and numbers to create the perfect combination of facets and angles to bring out the pure beauty of the modern-day diamond. Prior to this, as much as possible of the stone was retained without consideration for the brilliance contained within. His calculations guide the diamond cutters today as they ply their exacting trade.