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Casting rings in different sizes - Is it necessary?

Hello Orchidians!

I have an issue that I am facing right now with making cast rings.

I created my wax master in a size 7 and am having my caster cast
those. Here’s my question. can I stretch the 7 to a size 8 to avoid
re-creating a wax master in size 8? Should I just re-size the 7 to a
6 via old fashioned soldering or should I also do a master in size 6
as well?

AND. if the answer is going to be re-create a wax in the appropriate
sizes. should I just have my caster shoot extra waxes of the size 7
master and alter them to a size 6 and 8…what’s the easiest way of
doing this? Help!


Hi Kennedi,

You could try it with one, and test your casting house.

The easiest way would be to modify a wax, unless your wax is highly
detailed and has asymmetrical elements.

Making the wax from scratch is the best way, and it would look
right. Modifying to re-size a wax never looks quite right.

Regard Charles A.

Here's my question. can I stretch the 7 to a size 8 to avoid
re-creating a wax master in size 8? 

If you are making only one, or just a few multiples, absolutely, go
ahead and stretch it.

If you plan to make hundreds, make new models and rubber molds for
each size and you can just stretch to make the half sizes.

It will vary with the design, but what you have to ask yourself is,
in time or money what does sizing the rings cost compared to making a
new mold. If you are making 10 rings size 8 maybe you are better off
with a new mold. If only one, probably not.

Stephen Walker

Andover, NY

Kennedi- It depends. How many are you making at once? If they are
going to a gallery or retail store, just make them one size and then
let them be sized as per the retail customers needs. Most folks are
not just a size 6 or 7 or 8. They’ll be, oh say, a snug 6 or, a 6
3/4. Maybe a 7 1/2. You just never know. It’s just not cost
effective to make them all in different sizes unless you are doing
thousands. By the way, I remember when the standard size for women’s
rings were a size 6. Have fun and make lots of jewelry.

Jo Haemer

I too remember when women’s sizes were 6, maybe 7 at the most.
However, at some of the recent shows in which I participated, I
received a lot of requests for–now get this, sizes 10 and 11. And
these were for women. So, I have solved the problem by making what I
refer to as “unisex rings,” in large sizes and am able to fit the
fingers of men and women. I do all my own casting, and make the rings
with extra thick sterling shanks which I can easily enlarge using my
metal mandrel and hammer on the spot to fit the customer’s finger.

Hard question to answer without knowing what the ring looks like.
Some times you can resize the wax some times you have to make a new
model depending on the design of the piece.

Example if you have a ring with no stones in it and a basic design
on the service you might be able to just resize the wax. . but if
you have stones involved for instance if you increase the size you
also change the diameter of the piece thus changing the size of the
stone settings. Works both up and down with sizing. One or two sizes
should not make a big difference.


call the casting co.- some will size the waxes for a couple of bucks
to make a size 8 master. but it all depends on wether you are having
a run of 100 or 10- I’d stay with your size 7 and use a high quality
stretcher if necessary and you are using high karat gold (14kt, Pt
and other metals are less forgiving than 18-22 or fine silver),
Otherwise size in the studio to order- you will both make more and
save more in the long run. If however you are talking about a big
production run of say 1000 bands, then go ahead and get 300 in 6, 200
in 8 and 500 in size 7…most wearers don’t have true static sizing
stick size fingers anyway. don’t even consider 'adjustable" bands, or
open shanks- (they are problematic in so many ways!)- again find out
the caster’s price for wax modifications - I know one company that
charges less than 6 bucks to size a master and another that borders
on 32 bucks - so it’s very variable. If you are providing them to an
exclusive retailer (production run of castings) like a museum gift
shop, they can tell you what their most popular size called for is.
if it’s a unisex design, consider sizes 7 for women and 10 for men as
a starting point. It is easy to downsize! again, it depends on the
number you are having cast as to the best recommendation.

I sell at festivals, and I have found that women’s hand and finger
sizes are very diverse. Not only do I see tiny petite women whose
ring finger is a size 4 strolling the show with their friend whose
ring finger is a size 10, but I sell rings that people may want to
wear on their other fingers as well. It does take a lot of inventory,
but my larger customers are delighted to find a ring that fits that
they can buy on impulse.

I’m a small-potatoes operation and cannot afford to make molds in
sizes from 4 to 11 for women and from 7 to 16 for men. I pay my
casting company to size the waxes. It helps to make the master model
as large a size as possible - it costs less to downsize the waxes,
and having done some myself, I understand why!

Laurel Cavanaugh
San Jose, CA

I also make the rings heavy so that I can use a mandrel and hammer
at shows to fit them to customers. I find tiny tiny fingers including
children at the Celtic festivals I attend I try and have a few size
4’s, 5’s, and 6’s more 7,8,10 and have made 10 11 12 for men. I had
some of those great big hulking football players say they can never
find rings so I listened and supplied a few size 14,16 and they were
gone very fast.

stretching a full size is a bit much I rarely go past 1/2 size
depending of course on the ring design. Just my personal choices