Difficulties cutting coils with Pepe jump ring maker

I am in need of help/insight. I purchased a Pepe jump ring maker,
making the coils seemed easy and fast. Cutting the coils…has proven
challenging. First try the blade didn’t go through the coil. Second
try it did, cut some rings, flung many out onto the floor, and bent
the rest of the coil. That seemed to be the theme for the next two
coils I cut. 2 coils were 16g 8mm fine silver, the third was 16g 5.5m
GF. The smaller coil cut a little better in that more rings were cut
loose, less got flung out, but many were bent up in the process. I
made sure the top was level and firmly down, is it possible to be too
firmly tightened down? I made sure my blade was spinning the correct
way, it’s clearly marked with an arrow. I held the fordom with two
hands, tried to go slowly but got kicked about some. Any ideas or is
this a common problem?

Sarah -

When I first got mine a few years ago, I didn’t check the tightness
of the saw mandrel very well. It worked the first time, then began to
wobble as the screw loosened. This made ‘double cuts’ on the wire. I
figured it out before I damaged another coil of wire. Now, I check
the tightness (and make sure it is centered) before every use.

Also, I was tighteneing the top plate on the cutting guide way too
tight…and unevenly! I would tighten one end, then the other. Not
only was it too tight, but it was sloped and pinched the coil so
that the blade began binding in the coil (couldn’t see to confirm all
that, but that’s what it felt like).

Now I put the coil in place, place the entire cutting contraption on
a shelf at eye level, and tighten both screws at the same time. This
keeps even pressure on all parts of the coil, and prevents
over-tightening. It must be firm enough to prevent movement of the
coil, but not any more than that.

One last thing: mine (an older model than yours, this may not apply
to you) came without the little spacer that keeps the ‘front’ end of
the coil at the proper distance from the post. I made a suitable
spacer from scrap copper. Check yours and make sure the coil is not
too close to the screw-down post.

Since I don’t need so many jumprings anymore, I just cut the coils
with my saw. The winding device is wonderful and prevents a lot of
stress on my hands, but I’m fast with a saw, and there is no waste.

I hope this helps!
best regards,
Kelley Dragon

Hello Sarah,

I held the fordom with two hands, tried to go slowly but got
kicked about some. Any ideas or is this a common problem? 

I had no end of problems until I realized I was cutting left-handed
and the saw disc was cutting in the wrong direction (down going into
the coil rather than upward). If you are using 2 hands, is the hand
piece on the right side of the coil or the left side? It needs to be
on the right side. If you cut on the left side you need a flex-shaft
motor that can run in reverse.

If this isn’t the problem I’m sure you will get more replies.

Best wishes,
Neil A.

The rings shouldn’t jump out if you’ve got it securely placed in the
cutting box. Also, don’t make your cools too long. You want to be
able to place the blade into the cutting slot completely without it
hitting the coils, then turn on the power. I have Dave Arens’ Koil
Kutter which, judging by the pictures of the Pepe Jump Ringer I see
on Otto Frei, works on the same principle, albeit it’s not a whole
system connected to a platform. Also, don’t forget the Bur Life. I
also place a thin piece of painters tape on the coil before cutting.
It helps in keeping them together.

I did find a Review/Full Demo of using the Pepe JRM which may help
you. You can find it at

Hope this helps.

Sarah - What’s happening is that the cut coils move and get in the
way of the blade.

Cutting slow is not necessarily the answer - you want to move the
blade fairly fast thru the coil.

There are a couple of ways to keep the cut rings in place - you can
insert a wood dowel into the coil prior to securing it in the holder.
Or you can wrap the coil in masking tape. Wood is the tidy way, tape
is easy but requires that you clean the blade of adhesive regularly.

Be sure that you have lubricated the blade and the top of the holder

  • I use Bur Life or Injun Joes Silicone and smear it on the top of
    the holder, being sure to send some down the slot.

When cutting, make sure that you are moving the blade straight down
the slot. If you are slightly askew, it will grab.

When preparing your coil, wind it so that there are no gaps between
the loops.

These recommendations come from my use of the Grossman ring cutter,
I’m relatively sure that the Pepe cutter problems can be solved in
the same way.

Judy Hoch

Sounds like you may have your blade cutting in the wrong direction.
If it’s on correctly, you might try lubricating the blade with
beeswax. You can always call Pepe, I’m sure his number is in the

I just got one and had the same problem to start with. I realized I
hadn’t tightened the screw on the blade/mandrel properly. My next
cut through went well! Try that.

Monica Jones

I have not used the Pepe model but I am pretty familiar with the Ray
Grossman jump ringer. You can place wood doweling inside the coil to
prevent it from collapsing. Make sure to use a lubricant such as Cut
Lube or Bur Life on the blade - liberally apply each time you cut a
new coil. Be sure to wear safety glasses as the blade can shatter. If
your blade has bounced around on the coil it may be damaged thus
making a clean cut difficult if not impossible. Make sure the blade
is going in the correct direction. Hope this helps.

I might be able to help you. I’ve made a few videos demonstrating my
jump ring maker - actually, Dave Arens’ Koil Kutter that I am now
making. The principle is the same. The most important thing is to cut
slowly and carefully. Make sure your blade is centered and use
lubrication, such as beeswax or burr-life. I’m sure you’ve heard it
all before though.

Here is the link to my video showing how to cut with the Koil
Kutter. Just cut and paste this address in your browser:

I’ve made a few changes to the original Koil Kutter. The new one is
made completely out of metal. It can be used with either a Foredom,
Dremel or Proxon. I actually prefer it with the Dremel because it is
inexpensive and you can leave it set up. I used a Pepe in a class
once and I had similar problems, as did many students. The stop that
prevents the coils from being flung out is in the wrong place, it’s
hard to explain, but that is why people have trouble with that one
and don’t with the Jumpringer or Koil Kutter. Pepe tools are made by
a machinist, not a jeweler, they’ve missed the fine subtleties of
what makes the tool work.

Kevin Potter

I had the same problem. The solution is to have a stabilizer inside
the coils - like a bamboo skewer - to keep them in line. This works

Happy 2012. maja

Hi - there’s been a bit of discussion on this same topic recently,
you might look at the archives. From my personal experience, I have
this happen occasionally, and can offer a few suggestions. First,
inspect your blade - is there a chunk missing? When this happens, it
moves the coil infinitesimally as the broken unsharpened edge hits
the coil, flinging chewed up rings all over. If you see a chunk
missing, replace the blade, then figure out WHY the chunk is missing.
Second, is your flex shaft Foredom brand? The one Pepe recommends for
starting out is made in China, and has just enough wobble to destroy
your $12.50 blades. Get a Foredom, even used (this advice came from
Pepe customer service and REALLY solved the problem for me). Third,
check the tightness of the 3 little screws around your cutting
handpiece. They vibrate loose, creating enough wobble to chew up
sawblades. When you tighten them, seat the blade in the slot so you
can be sure it’s centered in the slot. There’s very little room to
work with here, but it IS possible to tighten your blade too close to
one side or the other, making it more likely to hit the side
and…chew up the blade. If none of these answer the issue, try
inspecting your coil AS you tighten down the lid - is the lid
straight, or bowed from overtightening? Is the coil being squashed?
Perhaps the lid isn’t even contacting the coil because it’s caught on
its own spring? If all else fails, call Pepe - they’re very helpful.
OH - almost forgot - don’t go too slow with your cut - go about 1/2
speed - too slow grabs instead of cutting, and lube your blade on
each pass, and place a one-gallon size ziploc bag over that edge, so
it captures your dust, and your rings if they fling. (Open it and
place the cutting cradle over one lip of the bag so it holds it, then
move the other side OVER the cradle and your hand as you cut - it’s
not airtight but covers on 3 sides for much less mess. If this is
unclear, I apologize. My Pepe sits cradle closest to me, mandrels
further, near the edge of the table. The Ziploc opening is away from
me, as I cut w/ my right hand on the opposite side of the cradle,
left to right. It’s how the space I had worked out.) If you have any
questions, feel free to contact me offline,


Sam Kaffine
Sterling Bliss, LLC

When my students are learning to use the jump ring cutter and this
happens to them, the usual reasons are: 1) the wrong size “ditch” has
been selected, 2) the coil is not pushed and seated at the end of the
"ditch" in the block, 3) The coil is loosely wound and looks more
like a spring, and, 4) NERVES! Going too slow and with trepidation.
Tightly coil the wire with NO SPACES between the turns. Select the
size “ditch” that is best for the OD of your tight coil (the coil
should be barely visible from the side.). Place the coil in the ditch
at the far end of the ditch. Screw on the slotted top (if the coil
lays over or leans then you need to select another ditch). When you
are sure the blade is well seated and will go in the right direction,
place it in position at the opposite end of the “slot” on the holder
block. Hold the block with one hand and hold the flex shaft in the
other. Step on the pedal and get the blade up to speed, onlythen move
the blade down the slot toward the coil at the end of the ditch with
one smooth motion (You can push or pull the blade as long as it is in
the correct position in relation to the coil.). Move the blade with
conviction! Let the blade come to a stop before you lift it out.
(duh!) Now, breathe! Remember: The coil must be wound tight and
firmly pushed against the end of the ditch opposite the blade; don’t
fill up the entire length of the ditch with coil as you need room to
place the blade into the slot and down into the ditch; the proper
size ditch must be selected; the top holder (with the slot) has to be
firmly attached; you need to lubricate the tool; you must move in one
smooth motion at a fairly quick pace. I have heard of placing a dowel
into the coil if the OD is large and the gauge of the wire is small
in proportion to the OD. I’ve never done this…but only because I
have a thing about cutting into wood with my blades. I hope you learn
to have better luck with this tool as it can be one of the most
useful and time saving things you can have in the studio!

I found that by running the coil over a tube of cut lube or
something similar and lubricating the saw, there were virtually no
problems, as long as the case was tightened correctly over the coil.
The blade must be running at full speed in the case and then drawn
in a steady, controlled stroke to the end. Do not remove the saw
until it has stopped spinning.

Another thing to check is the curve of the hand piece cord. If it is
too sharp, it will cause the blade to “buck”. With the lubricant on
the cut rings, I like to wash them in warm soapy water before
tumbling them. I hope this helps.


Do not remove the saw until it has stopped spinning. 

What is the rationale for this? Seems to me you want to lift it
while spinning to avoid binding. Always willing to learn…


Do not remove the saw until it has stopped spinning.

What is the rationale for this? Seems to me you want to lift it
while spinning to avoid binding. Always willing to learn...  

If you are not careful you can knock out the teeth on the blade and
mess up the slot. I’ve seen blades chipped and cracked into giblets
and chunks when a blade was removed too soon and hit the side of the
slot while still spinning.

Here are few things you can try. 1 make sure the blade is not too
coarse. More teeth per inch makes it easier to cut through thinner
material. 2 lubricate the blade. You can use specialty waxes or you
can use bees’ wax or even paraffin (if others are not available). 3
insert a wooden dowel into the loop of wire and pinch the coil
together as you saw.

Good luck
Steve Ramsdell