I need to solder bezels all over a rounded cuff bracelet. If anyone can offer me some tips it would be appreciated. I know I can't solder the bezels on a flat sheet of silver because then I will not be able to hammer out the bracelet shape. I guess I would have to slightly bend and distort the bezels so they conform to the contours of the bracelet. What is the "proper" method?
Ooh easy…or rather, a major pain in the neck, but not so
difficult. In fact, a multi-stone cuff bracelet of at least 30-40
bezel-set stones, has been a mainstay of my work, since 1992.
It’s where the name of my company originated from, because the
cuff looked,“Byzantine”. I recently made one out of boulder
opals, pearls, emeralds, and odd-colored, faceted tourmalines.
That was scary and fun. You can look up a picture of two early
examples, in the ancient April issue of Lapidary Journal circa
1996, under Byzantia if your local library happens to have it,
and, you’re incredibly bored, and have nothing better to do. The
picture of the sperm that I described in an earlier post, is in
there too…remember, this is old work in this mag…so be
kind… The trick is to form the cuff first, and then to make
your bezel a little bit taller than the stone, in order to sand a
curve into the bottom of the bezel using your fordham with
sanding discs. The curve sanded into the bezel should exactly
match the curve of the cuff. Fit each bezel as you go. Do not
bend or distort your bezel to the shape of the cuff’s curve, or
the stone will no longer fit in the bezel, and you will be left
tearing your hair out, with all of your hard work soldering the
darn things on done for nothing… If I’ve missed anything, or
you need more help with this, feel free to ask.
Lisa, (did I forget to say Happy Saint Patricks day to everyone
yesterday?), Topanga, CA USA