Silver Ring Part 1

When I get an order for a piece of jewellery such is my enthusiasm to get started I forget to document the process for my blog! This week I decided to make a simple silver ring and photograph each stage of the process. Here are the photos from today’s work.

Measuring length of silver wire
Measuring length of silver wire

I first start by getting the piece of silver wire and measuring the length I need. This is determined by the finger size. Since this piece isn’t for anyone in particular, I’ve made it quite large as it should be easier to photograph.

Cutting silver wire
Cutting silver wire

Having decided on the length, I cut off the extra silver. The wire is held in a ring clamp (above) and cut using a jeweller’s hand saw. The saw I am using I got from Otto Frei in San Francisco. It’s an aluminium frame and unlike the traditional jeweller’s saw it is not as flexible so you don’t break as many saw blades. They say that they make the handle and frame red because clinical trials have shown that the colour red promotes accuracy!

Shaping wire on ring mandrel
Shaping wire on ring mandrel

I then use a ring mandrel (above) which is held in a vice to hammer the length of silver into a ring shape. This is done using a rawhide mallet so as not to mark the metal.

Lining up solder joint
Lining up solder joint

I then adjust the ends of the ring using a pliers. This is to make sure the ends sit flush with each other before soldering.

Soldering silver ring
Soldering silver ring

The ring is then soldered using a silver soldering paste. This paste is a solder and flux combined. Click here to see my post on silver soldering.

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