22nd Street and JGM
The morning got off to an unintentional late start. The volume on the cell phone had accidentally been lowered to almost silent. When the alarm went off to get me up in time to make it for the morning hike around Sentinel Peak, I slept on.
I decided that it would be a good day to scout the 22nd Street show and the JGM show on the other side of the freeway from the hotel. There were a number of vendors in the 22nd St. tents that claimed to be offering facet rough. Most of what I found was not of the quality I would consider cutting or else were too tiny for most US cutters to consider.
I did find several vendors offering sunstone rough of various types, sizes and prices. With those and the few others having rough that might work, I took notes on what I discovered. The notes also included the location of the booth within the 22nd Street show so I could find it again. The show is that large!
The JGM tent a couple blocks north was fairly small, had some vacant spaces and nothing to attract me for a later return.
Arizona Mineral Show - Hotel Tucson
There was a shuttle stop right outside the JGM entry and shortly I was on my way to the Arizona Mineral and Fossil Show being held at the Hotel Tucson City Center. That show is where John Garsow shows his gems, minerals and facet rough. I had a nice catch up conversation with John and got an idea of the rough he was selling. As I left, he mentioned that he had old stock materials from several estates that I might want to check out on my planned return there.
I did not see much else in the way of facet rough elsewhere at the Hotel Tucson. There was plenty there for fossil and mineral collectors.
I took the shuttle back to the freeway shows area and headed back to the GJX to get a few of those Mali garnets I had seen the previous day. They were an interesting yellowish green shade, not very large and within my price range. I found the booth and picked out a few to take home. Hopefully they will be quick and easy cutting to balance out the large quartz gems I have planned to cut with the fantasy machine.
The Pueblo show was on the way back to the hotel. There I stopped to get some Arizona peridot rough I had seen the previous day.
USFG "Hob Nob"
Saturday evening was the USFG social, the “Hob Nob” at the OPLC. Dinner was pizza, chips, cookies, sodas. The “pretty stone” competition was held with separate voting for natural and synthetic stones.
Several people arrived with facet rough for sale, including Farooq Hashimi whose Tucson trip got off to an awful start by having his van broken into and a backpack containing rough stolen while he was having a lunch break in Atlanta. I came away with a handful (literally) of amethyst rough that Farooq had among his offerings.
It was a good evening with lots of show and tell among the attendees, sharing of problems and solutions, and generally getting to know other faceters.
Day 4 - More Scouting
There was no glitch with the cell phone alarm so the day started with another chilly hike. From Sentinel Peak, many of the tents for the freeway shows can been seen and the scale of the shows appreciated.
This was the last day for several of the wholesale / trade only shows so the plan was to check out the G&LW Holidome and Gem Mall shows as well as JOGS.
Holidome and Gem Mall
I got to the Holidome parking early enough that I got a space directly out from the entrance. The large gravel surface had settled in from last year and it was much easier to walk in the parking lot. The golf cart parking lot shuttles were out in force and getting new arrivals to the front entrance in record time.
The G&LW shows were pretty much as I remembered – lots and lots of beads, findings, finished jewelry, cabs and some commercial cut loose stones. I had a few vendors to check out for possible rough or stones that could be recut. Those and some others which did not have the right keywords in their listing did not have anything that interested me.
JOGS was also much like I remembered. The parking situation was confusing and the floorplan is equally bad. But instead of being a rectangular layout, the floorplan was a cross with doors at each of the four ends. It was easy to get turned around and likewise easy to not notice which direction was the one leading to where one parked.
The promoter grouped vendors of similar items so there was an amber area, and a silver jewelry area and a loose stones area, and so forth. As I was wandering around the loose stones section, I came upon a case which had what were obviously well cut Montana sapphires. It turned out to be a booth run by a fellow USFG member and we had a nice chat.
After JOGS I headed over to the KINO site in hopes that the Graves listing there might actually turn out to be a vendor with dops in the sizes I wanted. But no joy. The spot identified in the show program book was occupied by someone selling finished stones and jewelry.
Since I was there, I wandered around many of the tents. I found one lapidary supplier who might be a good resource for the future. He had several items I was wanting and others that I might need in the future. Hopefully he will be at the CFMS show in Pomona next month as fitting more into my suitcase was not an option.
Kino is not the place to find gem facet rough, but if you need a pallet of boulder sized rose quartz or equipment for cutting that size material, then Kino is your show.