orienting rough gemstones - Tanzaniteorienting rough gemstones - Tanzanite

Choosing and Orienting Rough Gemstones

Selecting and orienting rough gems can be challenging for new faceters. These tips can help you choose the right tools and resolve some common problems.

11 Minute Read

Tools for Choosing Rough Gems

While you don’t need a lot of tools, serious rough buyers should consider the following items must-haves. These tools will save you time and money and spare you many headaches (sometimes literally). With them in hand, you’ll most likely make some once-in-a-lifetime discoveries at once-in-a-lifetime prices. Don’t go to gem shows without them, even if you don’t plan on purchasing anything. (Yeah, right). You never know what bargains you might stumble across.

Recognize the importance of practice. Use these tools often and you’ll become proficient. You don’’t have to become a gemologist to know gemstone properties or the fair value of a good piece of rough when you see it. Of course, becoming a gemologist doesn’t hurt.

10x Loupe

Never leave home without your 10x loupe. Your hand loupe is your friend. Not only will it save you money when you’’re examining rough, it also helps send a message. Rough dealers will see you might really know what you’re doing. You’re a serious buyer who won’t be separated from your cash easily.

These tips will help you use your loupe properly. (That also helps send the message).

  • Rest the loupe hand against your cheek.

Ron Campbell

Central Coast Gemological Laboratory

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