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A Comprehensive Guide on How to Polish Rough Ruby

by Madonna

Rubies are stunning gemstones known for their deep red hue and exceptional brilliance. However, when they are first extracted from the earth, they often appear rough and lack the luster that makes them so desirable. The process of polishing rough ruby is crucial to bring out its true beauty and maximize its value. In this article, we will guide you through the steps to achieve a professional polish on rough rubies, enhancing their shine and allure.

1. Assemble the Essential Tools and Embrace Safety Precautions

Before commencing the polishing journey, equip yourself with the necessary tools and prioritize safety. Here’s a list of essential items you’ll need:


a. Lapidary Grinder:

Utilize this machine to shape the rough ruby and eliminate undesirable material.


b. Lapidary Saw:

A saw fitted with a diamond blade to cut the rough ruby into smaller, more manageable pieces.


c. Sanding Wheels and Belts:

Indispensable for progressively smoothing the gemstone’s surface.

d. Diamond Polishing Wheels:

Essential for revealing the initial shine on the ruby’s surface.

e. Polishing Compounds:

These compounds contain abrasive particles that aid in the polishing process.

f. Faceting Machine:

A precision instrument used to cut and polish the ruby’s facets.

g. Safety Gear:

Prioritize your well-being by donning safety goggles, a dust mask, and protective clothing while working with gemstones and lapidary tools.

2. Examine and Cleanse the Rough Ruby

Before diving into the polishing process, conduct a meticulous inspection of the rough ruby. Look for visible fractures, inclusions, or defects that could impact the final result. Thoroughly cleanse the gemstone to ensure no dirt or debris hinders the polishing journey.

3. Embark on the Initial Shaping with the Lapidary Grinder

The lapidary grinder is your ally in transforming the rough ruby into a more desirable form. Start by removing excess material and creating a rough outline of the desired shape for the final gemstone. Respect the natural crystal structure of the ruby to minimize wastage and accentuate its brilliance.

4. Saw the Ruby with Precision

For larger rough rubies, sawing may be necessary to divide the gemstone into smaller, more manageable pieces. Employ a lapidary saw with a diamond blade to make clean and precise cuts. Keep the size and shape of the final gemstone in mind during this process.

5. Embrace the Art of Sanding

Now that the rough ruby is taking shape, it’s time to embark on the sanding journey. Begin with coarser grit sanding wheels or belts and gradually progress to finer grits. This gentle sanding process helps eliminate scratches and blemishes, leaving behind a smoother surface.

6. Preliminary Polish with Diamond Polishing Wheels

The preliminary polishing stage is paramount in preparing the ruby for the final polishing process. Utilize diamond polishing wheels with a medium grit to achieve a semi-reflective surface. This will set the stage for a more effective and rewarding final polish.

7. Elevate the Brilliance with Polishing Compounds

The pinnacle of the polishing journey is the final polishing stage. Apply the polishing compound on a lapidary polishing wheel and gently move the ruby against the wheel’s surface. Maintain consistent pressure and coverage to achieve an even and radiant shine.

8. Thorough Inspection and Evaluation

After the polishing process is complete, conduct a meticulous inspection of the ruby. Check for any remaining scratches, marks, or imperfections. If any are spotted, repeat the necessary sanding and polishing steps until the desired outcome is achieved.

9. Faceting the Ruby (Optional)

Faceting, an intricate art of cutting precise flat surfaces or facets on the gemstone, can further enhance its brilliance and light reflection. While faceting is optional, it can significantly elevate the overall appearance of the ruby, increasing its value and captivating allure.

10. Cleanse and Finalize the Journey

Once satisfied with the polish and any potential faceting, cleanse the ruby using mild soap and water. Gently scrub the gemstone with a soft brush to remove any residual polishing compounds. Rinse thoroughly and dry with a lint-free cloth, revealing its true splendor.

11. Embrace Professional Certification

If your intention is to sell or showcase the polished ruby, consider obtaining a certification from a reputable gemological laboratory. A certificate from such an institution authenticates the gemstone’s quality and provenance, instilling confidence in potential buyers.

How do you clean rough rubies?

Cleaning rough rubies requires a gentle and cautious approach to preserve their natural beauty and integrity. Here’s a simple method to clean rough rubies:

1. Rinse with Water:

Start by rinsing the rough rubies under lukewarm running water. This will help remove any loose dirt or debris from the gemstone’s surface.

2. Mild Soap Solution:

Prepare a solution of mild dish soap and water in a bowl. Place the rubies in the solution and let them soak for a few minutes. Gently agitate the water to dislodge any stubborn dirt.

3. Soft Brush:

Use a soft toothbrush or a jewelry brush to gently scrub the rubies while they are still submerged in the soapy water. Be cautious not to use excessive force, as rough rubies can have natural fractures and inclusions that may be vulnerable to damage.

4. Rinse Again:

After scrubbing, remove the rubies from the soapy water and rinse them thoroughly under lukewarm running water. Make sure to remove all soap residue from the gemstones.

5. Pat Dry:

Carefully pat the rubies dry with a soft, lint-free cloth. Avoid rubbing the gemstones vigorously to prevent scratches.

6. Air Dry:

Allow the rubies to air dry completely before storing or proceeding with any further treatments.

Avoid using harsh chemicals, ultrasonic cleaners, or steam cleaners on rough rubies, as they can damage the gemstone’s surface or alter its natural appearance. By following these gentle cleaning steps, you can maintain the allure and brilliance of rough rubies for years to come.


Embarking on the journey of polishing rough ruby requires skill, patience, and the right tools. By following the comprehensive guide presented in this article, you can unveil the resplendent beauty hidden within a rough ruby, transforming it into a captivating gemstone that captivates all who behold it. Remember to prioritize safety throughout the process and invest in high-quality lapidary tools. With dedication and practice, you can master the art of polishing rough rubies, creating precious treasures cherished by gem enthusiasts and collectors for generations to come. Let the brilliance of your polished rubies shine as a testament to the ancient allure of these timeless gemstones.


1. Can a real ruby be scratched?

At a 9 on the Mohs scale, rubies aren’t easily scratched unless you use a diamond. Other gemstones and imitations are more fragile. You can scratch the surface of your ruby with a coin, and if it leaves marks, you likely have a fake.

2. Who should not wear ruby?

Astrologers say that Ruby ​​should not be worn in Virgo, Capricorn, Gemini, Libra and Aquarius ascendant because there is a feeling of enmity of the Sun with the owners of their zodiac signs.

3. Should ruby touch the skin?

A ring made from a ruby gemstone should be worn in the ring finger of the right hand, and the stone must touch your skin. Preferably, an astrologer or a gemologist should be consulted before wearing this stone.

4. Do rubies glow in sunlight?

Many rubies can shine when exposed to sunlight. Strong beliefs in many societies thought it was due to their magical powers. They actually glow because of ultraviolet rays. The sun’s UV rays make the chromium shine within the gem.

5. How do you purify ruby before wearing?

Fill a clean metal dish, ideally silver or copper, with a solution of honey, raw cow milk, Ganga Jal, and Tulsi Leaves and your Manik necklace. Allow 30 minutes for the stone to soak in the bowl before removing it and washing it with clean water. You can purify your ruby this way.


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