I would like to create a bezel our of silver which looks melted or pooled around the cabachon. Does anyone know the best method for this? Thanks
Something like that isn’t going to work like a regular bezel; you’ll need to create it, then set the stone in from the back, either with a bezel, prongs or tabs. To create that effect, make a trough the shape you want in some baked investment, or a flattened piece of charcoal, fill it with chunks of fluxed silver, then heat it with a torch until the chunks are rounded and fused together.
This looks very like an electroformed effect. I have only done copper electroformed metal in college, decades ago.
Having never done this, I offer the following suggestions:
- The bezel could be formed in some way and the stone set from the back.
- You could make a regular bezel and then very carefully go around the top edge with a very fine hot torch and fuse down the top edge of the bezel. You would then have to do some smoothing of the inside edge before rolling the bezel over.
- I have been experimenting with fusing the end of pieces of wire with my PUK 5.1 to form rivets and other decorative edges. I suppose that it is possible to do something like this to the bezel edge before rolling it over.
- There are many different ways to modify a standard bezel edge prior to rolling it. Scalloped edges, a series of saw cuts, V grooves cut into the edge, tabs cut into the bezel.
- Just today I ran some 18 G round wire through the top gears of my old economy mill making a zigzag shaped piece of wire. I formed it into a bezel, soldered to the backing plate (not easy to do) and off you go. Lots of fun.
I look forward to hearing other ideas…Rob
Thank you for your suggestions on this.
The chunks of silver…do you have any suggestions on the best silver for this to work. Thanks!
The bezels in the image, (at least to me) look like they were created in wax, where such a melted effect would be quite easy to achieve, and then cast in SS, and back set.
Can you create a bezel in casting wax? Form the bezel and cast it in delft clay. Then attach it to a backing plate with threaded fasteners or simple rivets?
I do a lot of manipulation of puddled sterling silver. Certainly not a fine art but fun. I usually wait to se what what I have as I go but this piece was planned. When I got what I wanted it was filed and soldered to a commercial bezel cup. While it was fun to do and the results were dramatic in a primitive sense I would cast these pieces in the future. Mount the cab from the back and tab it into place.
Ain’t experimentation fun?
When we, or at least I, say silver, we mean sterling silver or .925. There are other silver alloys, but I don’t work in them. I have made fine silver bezels, but they are fairly thick. Fine silver is a lot easier to move and manipulate than sterling, but it also isn’t as durable as sterling.
I only work in Sterling Silver or .925. I tried using Argentium once and found it to too quirky for me. And I didn’t like the look when polished. But then I prefer Vinyl to CDs too. If I am unclear about which silver I am using when I am commenting I am sorry, it’s Sterling.
This is electroforming directly over the stone on a base metal unknown.
Unless you know what you’re doing, forget it. I’ve done this for years in the 80’s.
This is electroforming with silver instead of copper. Interesting technique but totally different than metalsmithing with flux, solder, torch and metal. Also some are made with tin soft solder, flux and a soldering iron like a stain glass application.
f you do an image search on electroformed jewelry, you will see a lot of pieces that look like these. I don’t know much about electroforming and have never done it, so this was an eye opener for me as I was trying to image fabricating a piece to look like this. I wonder how durable it is…Rob
If it is done correctly with the epoxy clay base and covering the stone corectly it is as strong as it gets. It is pretty amazing.