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Adjustable ring fabrication

Hi everyone,

I wax carve some very chunky rings that are not complete circles, and since I primarily sell online, sizing is a constant issue. I have begun playing with the idea of adjustable sized rings. Typically, I size the band in my wax model before casting, and I am wondering if I could do this with an adjustable, open band? Would the properties of cast metal (sterling silver) hold up to the movement of an adjustable band? Or is it better for me to solder each band on from silver sheet, after casting?

I am planning to try an open bottom cuff-style, as well as an overlapping round band. If one method is better than the other, I’d also love to hear thoughts on that.

I attached an example of the kind of work I make, so you can see the idea.

thanks for your advice!

I have no answers for you, but I love the ring!


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Jenny, Because the front of the ring is chunky as you describe, you might try an open, adjustable band that has it’s ends concealed behind the top element of the ring. I’d probably solder a hammered band.

Depending on how many of these you sell a week, I suggest only casting the ornament. Prepare your models with a couple of flat spots on the back where the ends of a fabricated band will be soldered once you have the order in hand.
You can get low-dome and oval wire of appropriate thickness from several suppliers, so bending the shanks would be relatively trivial. Or you can get a comfort fit drawplate and make your own wire.

Hi Jenny,
Ive used 3 types of ring sizing,
1,with for example a tea spoon turned into a ring, I thin the handle and overlap this end underneath the main front design,
2,with an all wrought as in minted fronts like a button design or a rectangularshape, i made a press tool to blank out a shape thats got a shank with small ears on one end. where these 2parts of the shank overlap the ears are closed around the shank to make a tight sliding joint,up or down.
3,for complete circles, I use a ring roller thats made for fixing to ones bench but mine is portable with 2 handles so it is used when ive the finger infront of me, this only makes ring bigger.
with of course a raw hide mallet and steel ring mandrel to hand to true up and make round.
I separate making from marketing and will do the extra work of being in front of the customer.
Never lose a sale that way, and also get the size right there and then.
Whether casting the shank into the design will work?
try one! and bend to destruction. If your sterling is not ductile enough, then up the alloy to say 950 and youll find it much more malleable.
Your still stuck with sizing being away from the fingers in question, you cant send out a mallet and ring steel with every order!.
Technical Ted
in Dorset

Jenny- Cast silver doesn’t have the tensile strength that forged silver does.
If you really want to make adjustable shanks, cast the top and solder on a forged band.
I’m not a big fan of open shanks. Even with forged metal it will be just a matter of time before the shank gets deformed with every day wear. Also it will eventually become fatigued and break. I have personally seen the resulting deformations and breakage on adjustable silver ring shanks several times when folks ask me to fix them. They usually break near the top of the ring. I always end up just making a new solid shank in the right size. Sterling and flexing especially on a ring not such a good idea for the long run.
Have fun and make lots of jewelry.
Jo Haemer

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Thanks so much everyone for your advice and ideas!