Information on Kinite

Just bought some kinite at a show. The stones are beautifully cut. I
took a risk with an unknown dealer because they were so nice, but
they were somewhat pricey. Can anyone give me a few more details on
kinite or direct me to a resource to read up? Thanks!

Diane E. Russ
The Chrysalis Group, LLC

Hi Diane,

I have an M.S. in Mineralogy and have been faceting stones for about
35years now. Never heard of Kinite. There is a material called
Kinoite, but it is not facetable. Please continue my never-ending
education with a description of the material you purchased. Do you
mean Kunzite, a lavender to pinkish material? Much appreciated,



I’ve never heard of kinite…are you sure it isn’t kyanite ?
Kyanite is usually semi transparent and blue. The long flat crystals
are unique in that they have two hardnesses depending on orientation
of the scratch.

Ron MIlls, Mills Gem Co. Los Osos, Ca.

Do you mean kyanite? Blue? Check out the listing in Schumann’s book.
Tough to cut because of perfect clevage and different hardness on
different planes. I’d love to see the stones you found.

Chris L.

Kyanite - Polymorphic Aluminum Silicate Gem

I assume you mean “kyanite” - blue, satiny luster?

Kyanite is a very special mineral in that it has one hardness along
the crystal and another across it, though you probably shouldn’t
check this out on polished surfaces! It makes it rather difficult to
polish which is why it hasn’t been used much until recently. Clear
deep-blue gemmy material is EXPENSIVE. Denim-colored silvery stuff
with inclusions is cheaper but very popular. Green material has also
been showing up lately.

It’s a metamorphic aluminosilicate mineral - see info here:



I assume you mean kyanite. It’s a very beautiful stone, a great
substitute for sapphire, but it’s major fault is its softness which
leads to chipping or even crushing during setting. Best used in
earrings and pendants, and even then care should be taken.

hi diane,

are you speaking of kyanite, a beautiful blue, faceted stone? if so,
i read an article on it in Modern Jeweler a couple of months
ago…perhaps there is an online archive for the magazine.

matthew crawford

Oh, KYANITE!! Sheesh! I didn’t make the connection.

Cuts a pretty stone, but don’t try setting it! This is one of those
stones for collectors, quite fragile, best to enjoy its beauty in a
box. Quite a challenge to cut, and difficult to find facetable
material of any size…you have a real prize!

Wayne Emery
The Gemcutter


As others have mentioned, Diane must have been referring to Kyanite.
Kyanite is a Silicate of Aluminum similar to Topaz but without the
flurorine. See Precious Stones by Max Bauer (Dover, 1968) for an
extensive description.

I have specimens from near Spruce Pine, North Carolina, USA. Most
specimens are streaked pale blue crystals that are sometimes called
"blades." Sometimes transparent dark sapphire-like blue crystalline
regious are found that can be faceted. Although I am a faceter, I
have never cut Kyanite because I have never obtained a specimen with
a large enough transparent blue crystal. The hardness varies between
5 and 7.5 which may pose some problem during cutting and polishing.

Kyanite is “moderately abundant” and is found thoughout the world
but the facet quality dark blue material is much rarer.


Thanks, everyone, for the comments on kinite. With your help I think
I’ve determined that I just had a spelling error on the tag attached
to my stones! And, the merchant was difficult to understand with his
accent. I believe my stones are kyanite - a beautiful blue, and yes
they look just like sapphires, maybe just not quite as deep in color.
They are drilled, so I don’t have to worry about breaking them when I
try to set, but will just put on earrings or a necklace. And yes,
expensive, so I’ll need to be careful!

Someone mentioned kunzite. Anyone know a good source, NY Boston or
Providence area to find kunzite with more of a light pink color, not
the more common lavender that I’ve seen? Stones to set, or
drilled…either way.

Thanks for the help!

Hi Fred,

Thanks for the reply. I’m quite familiar with the properties of
kyanite, having faceted a few for the challenge they provide. I just
did not connect the material with the mis-spelled original post.

I’ve seen a lot of replies here about kyanite and its properties,
etc. But I suspect most of these posts, like so many here, are
really second-hand (cut and paste, almost) from Google
and not personal observation. The green quartz thing seems to have
no end…just anecdotal conversation and offerings from folks who
are happy to “research” it.

Anyone who has actually worked with kyanite, either cutting it or
setting a few, would, I believe agree, from experience, that this
material does not belong in jewelry. Like sphalerite, it can be
quite beautiful, but does not really qualify as a gemstone if one
uses the classical definition of beauty, rarity and DURABILITY. As a
pretty object, it’s fine, but I hope the suggestion is not going out
that these stones be set, as they will most likely get damaged in
the process. And that would be a shame, as crystals of kyanite clean
enough to facet a decent stone are not common, nor are successfully
faceted stones. Sort of like screwing up a good piece of wood…you
can always just chop down another tree, right?



My own reply about kyanite came from my own personal experience,
having several boxes of it sitting just a few feet away, and having
crumbled the girdle on a couple of stones while setting. But I don’t
think you should fault folks who take the time and effort to look
things up in an attempt to help someone else. I think it’s rather
nice of them, not something to complain about.



I have no problem with people “looking things up” to pass on to
others too lazy to do their own research. But often, the "source"
they quote is incorrect. The quoter doesn’t know this, because they
lack personal experience, so “bad” gets repeated, and
some casual readers will assume the “bad” is correct.

I see this quite a bit here, much more prevalent than years ago. Of
course, if they Googled it, it must be right, right?

The brewing conversation about global warming is a PERFECT example,
as is TIME’s article on the subject. Information carefully selected
to promote a perspective; and other carefully ignored.