Tucson 2006 Report

Hi All:

I just returned home from Tucson a couple of hours ago. For me, it
was another rewarding trip, not for buying gemstone rough or
anything else for that matter. I have enough gem rough right now
that will take me at least two hundred and seventy years or so to
facet…at the rate that I cut. What I went to Tucson for was to mix
with faceters and people interested in faceting.

My wife Rhoda and I attended the Friday evening Orchid dinner at the
very old Savoy Opera House, which was fun. We met some friendly and
interesting people there. My only negative on the event was that I
had to eat burned barbecued chicken. It again proved why I never
barbecue chicken at home. Why louse up a good thing!

On Saturday morning I attended GIA’s new (out just last month)
Diamond Cut Grading System course. This was a full four hour long
presentation presented by excellent GIA instructors and staff
members. Like I remember from my Graduate Gemologist classes of
twenty-five years ago, the lecturers’ did not waste words or have
any long pauses. The flowed continuously, and I had a
bit of a time in absorbing all that was flowing my direction. There
were microscopes for about thirty five of us, and then there were
another fifteen seats or more occupied by observers that reserved
space too late. They followed along in an extensive workbook like we
all had. We were led through GIA’s diamond grading form that covers
round brilliant cuts. This is the favorite cut of jewelers and end
buyers all over the world, so it was natural to concentrate on round
brilliant diamonds.

I have looked at diamonds in my early GIA courses and did again this
week in Tucson. What we all see are terrible work, when it comes to
cutting, faceting, fashioning…whatever term pleases you. Every
diamond that I have examined would rate a Novice Class in a
competition cutting…if we were talking about the stones I love,
the colored And so, what the GIA course seems to be in my
mind is a method of looking closely at how far off a diamonds CUT
compares, when it is compared to a perfectly cut gem. The GIA system
is literally pointing out all of the faults in the cutting and to
just what degree of being un-desirable that stone is. The grading
form covers approximately eighteen areas, from Brightness to
Proportions. But hey, GIA is now giving some serious thought to that
fourth “C” of the four C’s (Color, Clarity, Carat weight, Cut) that
we keep hearing about from every jeweler in every jewelry store.
What I have done here is present a fifth “C,”…COMMENTS!

Of course, it is no wonder that cutting faults are acceptable when
it comes to diamonds. The material is so difficult to work with and
is so very much more valuable than the colored It is no
wonder then, why the many cutting faults are not corrected on
diamonds…THERE WOULD BE TOO MUCH WEIGHT LOSS! The value of each
and every diamond would drastically drop if they were cut to proper
meet points, level and parallel girdles, best table width, and
proper crown angles. If you do not believe me, check the much lower
sales price of a 99-point diamond to a 101 point diamond. And
remember, the GIA course I examined is talking about round brilliant
cuts, not the other shapes or cut designs like Barions, which would
be far too wasteful of diamond material to make it profitable for
anyone. GIA’s cut grading system is great, I think. There are so
many variables involved when one grades the cut of a stone. I cannot
think of any person or organization that could do a better job of
grading quality of cut than what GIA has produced thus far.

Read the chapter in my Faceting History book about the cutting of
diamonds. It is the longest chapter in my book for good reason. It
is amazing to me what earlier cutters accomplished with their
equipment and methods, when working with diamonds. We modern day
colored stone cutters have it so easy in comparison.

Rhoda and I spent the evening Saturday with a large group of
faceters at the OPLC’s Hob Nob gathering. This is an outstanding
event for like interested people. You cannot help but enjoy talking
to all of the friendly faceters. Art Kavan deserves a big thanks for
making the event happen.

And so, 525 miles later, I am once again home in Lake Forest, CA,
where I have to face reality. It was nice being in Tucson Heaven for
a few days.

Glenn Klein, G.G.
Lake Forest CA USA

Email: @Glenn_Klein

Hi All,

For those who made the trek to Tucson and attended the 10th
Anniversary Dinner, WOW! These events keep getting better and better.
This year I brought my husband Dave who met many of you that keep me
chuckling throughout the year.

One of the highlights of this year’s event was last year’s Raffle
Winner, Susan Bucknam. She delivered a short speech on what it meant
for her to win the raffle last year. One of the prizes was Bonny
Doon’s newly designed metal saw. Lee presented it himself on the

Orchid’s 2006 Raffle Winner, Karen Lechner was given a phone call
that evening from Hanuman announcing that she had one the prize
package. Karen has already posted her enthusiastic response. Thanks
again to all the sponsors of the raffle.

The Orchid Booth at Catalog in Motion was an explosion of color,
orchids and Hanuman served Ganoksin well talking and
explaining about the Ganoksin Project and the new CLASP convergence
of jewelers.

There were several educational booths down the hallway to the
ballroom, GIA, Metalwerx, New Approach School and Revere Academy and
SNAG all sharing their passion for teaching and collaboration. In the
ballroom where the hustle and bustle of demonstrations, tools, metal,
findings, packaging, thousands of people were talking, sharing and
purchasing goodies for their studio.

It was an intense 3 and half days, but glorious fun. We worked hard
during the day and played hard at night. The Tucson Gem Show is a
circus of gem events and the energy of camaraderie is felt

It was great to be reunited with old friends and I love the
opportunity to make new ones. Thank you Orchid. You are the fulcrum
of sharing.


Karen Christians
50 Guinan St.
Waltham, MA 02451
Ph. 781/891-3854 Fax 3857
Jewelry/Metalarts School & Cooperative Studio

Well finally, after more than 30 years of cutting and working the
bench, I got to the Tucson show. Actually, I have to credit Pete
Erdo of the Graves Company for getting me there. I work at Graves
part time and he needed help (at least he said he did) and helped me
get there. So I had to work at the store for a few days but at least
had a couple of days to take in the sights.

And sights there were. I was completely adled by the AGTA, Star Pass
and several other of the more exclusive shows. But I guess my mind
was really numbed by the G&LW, TEP, and smaller independents along
Rt 10. After two days I could hardly think any longer and so went
back to work!

A highlight however, was going to the Orchid dinner. Unfortunately,
my companion and I arrived just before the seating and had little
time to meet more than 3 or 4 fellow Orchadians, but even that was
worth it. I did exchange a word or two with Karen, mainly because
she was gracious enough to introduce herself and a few others at the
bar. Great place to hang around, right?

Unfortunately as well, we found the Savoy, while quaint and quite
lovely, seriously lacks a descent sound system. Those sitting to the
left of stage towards the bar didn’t even know Charles was speaking
until someone pointed it out. Would have liked to hear what he had
to say!! Maybe that’s an item to work on for future gatherings.

Otherwise, the food was good enough and we spent a cheerful evening
talking with Dan Trebish and others.

Next year (?), I hope to arrive earlier and to meet more of those I
know so well on line but have never met in person.

To those who put it all together, a big THANK YOU.

Cheers to all from Don at The Charles Belle Studio in SOFL where
simple elegance IS fine jewelry! @coralnut2

Just returned from Tucson - what a great week - shopping and
catching up with friends I made last year. I enjoyed meeting many
members at the Orchid dinner and had a great time bidding on and
winning lots of the goodies.

Pat Glover, I’d like to thank you for letting Orchid members know
about 2 courses offered in Tucson last week. I really enjoyed Doug
Harling’s Granulation and Fusing course. Thanks Doug! Pat, the
community studio is awesome and the staff were great - I’ll be back
for more courses.

Sincerely, Nancy

I am so sorry I missed the dinner. I was happy to see a lot of
fellow people coming and going thru the show. This year it seemed to
be more of show that were interested in learning and how to improve
the shop. To improve with better tools for health, or just better
on the new stuff that is on the market…

Andy " The Tool Guy" Kroungold
Tool Sales / Technical
Stuller Inc
Phone 800-877-7777 ext. 94194
Fax 337-262-7791