New member here and getting back into faceting as an adult after learning and cutting a few stones in my high school and college days.
After so many years away from the hobby, I have only been able to reconnect with a couple of my old resources for rough- and so I am planning to visit the Tucson Show for the first time in 2024.
My primary interest is in higher end tourmaline rough- in parcels. I would rather spend the whole budget with one great dealer and get the best possible mix and quality in a single parcel than buy odds and ends piecemeal from here and there. And at the end of the day, if I come across a particularly good opportunity to secure a really great parcel or two of any semi-precious rough that is outside the realm of commonly available, that would overtake my specific interest in tourmaline.
Also, Jan-Feb is a particularly tough time for me to be away from work- so I cannot go for several days.
Taking both factors into account, my plan is to fly in very early one morning and come home same-day- realistically giving me 4-6 hours to go shopping. In other words, one show- and probably not enough time to fully walk that one show.
I have done a fair amount of online research, but am still having difficulty determining which one show to attend with my limited time. Given the above parameters, I would be grateful for any suggestions on my best odds for which show to visit where I am most likely to find what I am seeking either in the booths or wandering the halls of the related hotel to visit vendors operating out of their hotel room.
With only 4-6 hours, I would head to the Pueblo show. But some of the best sources don’t have booths. You need to figure out who they are and hook up with them either in Tucson or somewhere else. The last USFG had a list of some really good reliable facet rough dealers. Friend them on Facebook, Instagram or check out their websites to get a feel for what they carry. If you see something you like get a dialogue going and let them know what you are looking for.