[Tucson 2003] General information

Dear David, the link http://www.tucsongemshowguide.com should give
you all the info you seek. Sam Patania, Tucson Oh as for which day I
would pick any one of the four AGTA days, they are right in the
middle of everything and the Orchid dinner as well on the 7th.

Hi David - I’ve interspersed my answers with your questions below.

       1. I would like to get into the big, wholesale gem shows to
do a little buying and a lot of admiring.  I remember from last
year that I need my resale # and a bunch of invoices.... any
specifics on this?  Will my invoices from Rio and a few gem
wholesalers be enough?  If not, any tips on how to con my way in? 
:)  If the req's  vary from show to show a source for specific
would be much appreciated. 

I’ve gotten into many of the wholesale shows with only my business
card and a resale certificate issued by the Calif. Bd of
Equalization. Even the big AGTA show that requires all kinds of
invoices let me in last year with just my business card and resale
cert. Check out the website for Colored Stone magazine
http://www.tucsonshowguide.com/tsg/ for all the info that’s
available before the shows open.

   2. Which shows are your favorites for seeing all kinds of
beautiful gems?  I seem to remember that most require
pre-registration so I'd like to know which shows are most

Check out the Idar Oberstein Group in the GLDA Show. You will see
some amazing gems. Also the Gem Galleria in the Manning House
showed some incredible pieces, You will see beautiful stones
everywhere you go but these two stuck in my mind as exceptional last

   4. Can I bring my wife and a friend to the wholesale shows, or
is the registration only for me? 
Some shows allow you to bring in an "associate." 
   5. Where can i get one of those handy Gem Show Guides?  I paid
to mail order one last year, then got to the show and they were
everywhere for free! 

Check the Colored Stone website, they print the big free show guides
you saw there.

Charleen Tyson Weigel
West Point, CA 95255

Easier and faster yet, check the web for show guides and
Go to www.colored-stone.com/tsg/. This is Colored Stone magazine’s
web cit e and it offers the latest updated on shows,
vendors, dates, etc…There are lots of other cites for specific
shows such as AGTA, GLDA , that you can access from there as well.
Also, there are hotel deals li sted and you can even pre-register for
some shows either through the web, or by down-loading registration
forms and faxing them back. This was a great way for me to make all
my travel and show arrangements before
last years shows. Good luck!

This is part of an “off-list” response that I sent to a subject that
had come up on the list. I think that others might be interested in

  Just to divert a little, this Tucson show... who goes? Are only
stone merchants allowed to go or can any layman rock up and buy
some really nice stones? Sounds interesting...!!! 

The Tucson show is really an incorrect name as there are about 32
simultaneous shows going on at Tucson at the same time in all kinds
of buildings, tents, convention centers, hotels etc. Sometimes even
in gas stations and parking lots. It is the world’s largest Gem,
Mineral, Fossil and Jewelry Show.

Many of the shows are open to the public. The three main shows (
GJX, AGTA, and GLDA) are ‘wholesale only’ and you have to qualify to
enter - usually by showing your re-sale license, business card, and
a fist full of invoices to prove that you actually buy jewelry
related materials. Foreigners have it easier - usually just a
passport and business card.

At the end of the period there is the Tucson Gem and Mineral Society
Show which is open to the public and you pay to get in each day -
also many fine vendors and exhibitors.

Anything and everything jewelry related can be found at the Tucson
Shows and usually at very competitive prices as every single
producing country in the world is there competing with the rest. Take
a look at < www.tucsonshowguide.com > . You can click on the
different shows and see who participates and also what they sell and
even pre-register for some of the shows.

Best regards, Robert Lowe Lowe Associates - Brasil Gemstones, Rough,
Specimens Tucson - February 6 - 11, 2003 - GJX # 205 e-mail: USA
robertplowejr@juno.com e-mail: Brasil <@Robert_P_Lowe_Jr1>

Hello Orchidland,

I’m getting ready to go to the Tucson shows and am very concerned
about the new luggage “suggestion” that check through luggage not be
locked. It seems that we are being discouraged from carrying on bags
and from checking thru luggage. Its a bit of a dilemma.

Fedexing and UPSing rough (and tools) back could get too expensive.
I usually bring back a full suitcase of rough (and tools) and do not
want to loose it. Luggage insurance usually doesn’t kick in until
after you make a claim on your home insurance. Given the recent
developments with home insurance being canceled after a claim, the
luggage insurance may not be useful.

I spoke to United and AA and they said that they have no
responsibility for any check thru luggage that is opened because
it’s the Feds that open it after you’ve checked in.

What are you’re thoughts on the luggage issues? Are you handling
things differently this year?

Karen Dave’

Karen Dave, Ask if you can lock it after inspection. On a recent trip
San Diego-Dallas-Mexico City, into Dallas the luggage did not arrive,
was delivered 2:45 AM intact. Dallas to Mexico City only one of two
arrived, the second took 4 days to show up, totally rummaged through.
Two computer electronic packages bought in Dallas intended for home
were opened, one was missing some components.

Once baggage leaves security checks, it still goes into the bowels
of the airport where most thievery occurs, yes still. Teresa

 Karen Dave, Ask if you can lock it after inspection 

I don’t know if this is universal, limited to domestic travel, or
what. But just yesterday, flying home from holiday vacationing here
within the U.S., I checked in at Delta, and was told the bag needed
to be open for inspection. I opened the lock I’d put on, but left it
there on the zipper, and asked if/when it could be relocked. They
told me it would be inspected relatively immediately, and the lock
would be relocked afterwards, and that the one inspection was the
only one needed, so long as the bag was out of my control. I should
mention that I was flying out of a decidely small airport, so all
baggage was hand searched , except for those few carry on items where
the x-ray was enough. From the look of it, most bags were opened and
searched beyond simple things, always with the owner watching but not
allowed to touch or help. My checked bag was searched sometime after
I lost sight of it, but all was intact on arrival.

I have always felt, and still feel, that anything of value should be
in your carryon, even though it will now ellicit more frequent hand
searches at the x-ray areas. Obviously, prohibited items cannot be
treated thus, but otherwise… And I’m quite sure that if you’re
concerned about the security of your luggage, you have the right to
request a private search, so your belongings are not visible to other
passangers or folks other than the security people. This always
used to be the case, and I see no reason why it should not still be
so, even in the event of one of those dang surprise random searches
right at the gate just when you thought you were about to get on the


My thought is that there’s lots of suitcases for sale in places like
the Salvation Army and Goodwill. What happens if they want to open a
locked case? Do they destroy the case to open it? Or, do they destroy
the case and contents? I’d take the chance of sacrificing a case. I’d
find out about insurance. I’d write a letter to whatever governmental
agency is in charge of policies and procedures for opening locked
luggage and make sure they understand that they should open cases
with as little damage to the case as possible. What happens after
they open yopur case? How do they shut it and get your stuff back to
you? What about shipping via Amtrak or Greyhound?

Christine in Littleton, Massachusetts, where the exercise program
for the season is shovelling.

Dear Karen, How about shipping stuff and avoiding the problems
altogether? I am here in Tucson and would like to be able to help
with this problem as an address/destination. I don’t have any plan in
mind but if we can come to an arrangement I would be happy to help.
Sam Patania, Tucson

Dear Christine et al, These new checked bag restrictions are VERY
unsettling to me. I fly 4-5 times a year around the country teaching
weekend workshops and 5 day intensives (in jewelry and
metalsmithing). I have the luggage thing pretty much down to a
science: I have a stash-- that I constantly renew-- of gray
Samsonite hard shell suitcases found at thrift stores and yard
sales. The suitcase is very carefully packed with tools: hammers,
stakes, handpieces, samples, mandrels-- you name it. As I said, since
I have done this for 8 years or so, I have this honed to a smoothly
running system. The tools for each area that I address at the
workshop, such as soldering or flex shaft or forming,are packed into
flat, see thru plastic compartment boxes. All these boxes nestle in
just the right way into the suitcase. All hollow areas are
backfilled with the tougher tools like mandrels and hammers. All
this weighs in at about 50-55 lbs, well within the 70lb weight limit
of most airlines. The suitcase is locked at the latches to keep it
closed and the whole shootin’ match is bound firmly by two hefty
luggage straps.

The idea of opening this up at for security is not pleasant. All
the obvious concerns about theft other me, but even more is the
question of how will they repack things? Will they get it all back
in there ? (It took me many trips to figure out how best things pack
together inside the suitcase. You can’t just let things rattle
around…) When I’m standing at the baggage carousel there’s always
the fear of seeing my tools coming down the conveyor one at a time.
(I recently saw someone’s briefcase come down the belt open and
trailing a fine collection of pornographic magazines. No one claimed
it but everyone waited to see if anyone would. But I digress…)
Must I leave the latches un locked? After all, they have no key…
Also, since 9/11 I’ve been packing my more threatening pieces, ie
long brooches, in carefully w/ my tools. Will they be repacked

Honestly, in a year of slower business on almost all fronts, I fear
that this final straw is pretty significant. I love to teach these
workshops and I believe firmly in the value of passing on knowledge;
many pay adequately (once you streamline your prep time) but with the
added travel time and now the risk of tool loss and breakage, I’m not
sure that it’s worth doing it anymore. Insuring the bag becomes
costly. Shipping it ahead via Grayhound is time consuming, costly
and leaves me without tools on either end of my trip-- not to mention
the lead time of having to have everything in order at least one
week before I leave. All these added costs, both hidden and up
front, just about make this a losing proposition. Many of the
schools-- such as Arrowmont, Penland, etc.-- can’t cover these extra
costs. Frankly, the instructor fees that some schools pay are
already marginal at best; this added expense puts teaching there
firmly into the charity column. (I believe that schools, guilds,
etc. will have to deal with this sooner than later as more
instructors encounter these problems.)

I have a call in to TSA and I’m waiting for a call back. I’ve
spoken with the airlines as well. It is not there responsibility and
so they assume no liability. It seems that we’re at sea. I hope
that it’s not as bad as it seems. Perhaps, when I next travel in
February, I’ll find that it’s no big deal. Hope springs eternal.

Andy Cooperman

All, I live in Phoenix, Arizona. Our local news a couple of nights
ago had a display from Sky Harbor International Airport of items
confiscated from baggage. One item that stood out was a rock of
about 7 pounds which appeared to be a lapidary rock. It was not
allowed to be shipped. They also had lots of confiscated sharp
items. If I were attending the gemshows by airplane I would plan on
shipping all my purchases. You can bet that if a lot of fliers push
the system in its current operating status, the system will become
even tighter. Security is one item that cannot be compromised.

Gerry Galarneau
Feb 1-14, 2003, G+LW Gem Mall Booth 111

Sorry, Caryl! Don’t go to Tucson with the idea that you won’t miss
anything unless you have lots (lots!) of time and great stamina,
and a profound attention span. Even then you will miss things,
sometimes under your nose. It takes days to see the shows, and if
you are really looking at/for things; trying to learn; to judge
quality and value,; establish connections; find inspiration and deal
with the reality of your bank account, you may just want to go back
to your room at night, go over notes; plan the next days strategy and
paw through your purchases. more advice? wear good walking shoes,
take water, a big enough ( preferably light weight) bag for
purchases. Get a safe despotism box at the hotel so you needn’t
carry everything around with you all day. Don’t overlook the little
motel shows …I’ve found great bargains and interesting weird stuff
at them. Younger cutters establishing themselves are really
appreciative of their buyers and are less expensive usually than
people who have already established a great reputation…as is only
right. And do look at what you bought and add up your purchases
every night so your dazed mind has some kind of grip on what you have
already purchased and how many thousands you are already over what
you swore was your limit. Have a great time!! Marianne Hunter

Does anyone have and pointers for me, is there anything I should be
made aware of and are there any restricted areas that I may like to
see, and how could I get into those areas? I went to the JA show in
NYC and had to have my Student ID and now that I am no linger a
student, and do not yet own a business, how should I go about that?

Thanks for any info and I should meet some of you at the dinner.

Aaron A. Tracy

Hi Everyone, I am new to the list and am enjoying reading and
learning from those experienced in the jewelry industry as I am new
to that too. Can someone tell me how to register and attend the
Tuscon show? I may not be in time to go this year, but I’d like to
know more about it so that I can plan to attend either this year or

-Dee Dee

DeeDee - Go to www.tucsonshowguide.com for info on the Tucson show.
Pat @ Patania’s

Can someone tell me how to register and attend the Tuscon show? I
may not be in time to go this year, but I'd like to 

Go to < www.tucsonshowguide.com > you will see all of the shows. You
can click on the show sites and get registered at several of the
shows. You can even research products, dealers, etc.

The main three shows for faceted Gemstones are the AGTA, GLDA and
the GJX - which are all within a short walking distance of each
other downtown and basically during the same time period.

Best regards
Robert Lowe,
Lowe Associates - Brasil,
-Gemstones, Rough, Specimens-,
Tucson - February 6 - 11, 2003 - GJX # 205
e-mail: USA robertplowejr@juno.com
e-mail: Brasil <@Robert_P_Lowe_Jr1>