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Fabricate Cluster Charge?


#1

I’m curious to know How much would you charge to fabricate a Oval
Cluster with a 9x7 Oval ruby and 12 Rd. Dia’s sizes measuring 3mm to
3.5mm around in White Gold. Using Tubing, wire and a mounting on
bottom. Yes I have looked for a mounting to fit, but the different
size Dia’s do not allow. I expect a Days work with around 72 Welds.

Material__________ Labor__________?

I went from $800.00 To $600.00 is this to Low?

thanks Johneric


#2
I'm curious to know How much would you charge to fabricate a Oval
Cluster with a 9x7 Oval ruby and 12 Rd. Dia's sizes measuring 3mm
to 3.5mm around in White Gold. Using Tubing, wire and a mounting on
bottom. Yes I have looked for a mounting to fit, but the different
size Dia's do not allow. I expect a Days work with around 72
Welds.

A. I’d charge $125 an hour, plus
B. Triple key on gold (you didn’t say how much it would weigh)
C. Double to triple on stones if you sold them.

A “days work” is 8 hours x $125 = $1000 for all labor plus material

Are you a wholesale trade shop at $600-$800?

David Geller


#3

I’ve done a few similar in description. Finished weight of the
cluster(not including shank, if its a ring) would probably be under 2
dwt. But you will have material loss cutting down from larger stock
so keep that in mind.

72 welds sounds like a lot of touchy work. You could cut that down
by the following…

Pre-form your tubing as desired. After making your center setting,
layout as needed. Lately I’ve been using flux as a slow drying glue
for the layout. You can do it on a metal sheet or if you need it
domed somewhat that works too. The flux is nice because its slow
drying yet has enough surface tension to lightly hold small parts in
place while you monkey with it. I previously used pink wax sheet on a
thin glass plate but it obscures full observation of the mating
surfaces of your parts. When you’re completely satisfied with the
placement and relationship of all the components simply set it aside
overnight to dry. Next day the flux will have dried to a pretty
secure adhesion. (I discovered this once while trying to pry off a
quarter that had fluxed itself to my bench). Now you can plaster the
assembly. When that cures a little heat on the metal sheet and some
careful nudging and the plaster block comes off so you can solder the
backside.

After you chip off the plaster you can solder on your prongs and if
desired, gather the extra length below the setting into a basket, or
just cut them off flush if that suits your finding better.

Another way is to just cut the top plate in heavy sheet and add
prongs as needed, but this has quite a bit of material waste. Upside
is far fewer solder joints to sweat apart in subsequent soldering.
Downside is if you misplace a drilled hole you’re in trouble.

Pick your poison.

As to price, with 72 welds I can easily see 800 or more at retail
and that would be fair for the work involved. For similar complete
rings I’ve made I’ve charged 1500-2000 depending on material.

These other two ways will get the job done quicker (maybe even with
less heartache) so you can either charge less if its an issue or
charge the same since its the finished product that really counts.
If its crisp and clean and better than your competition would do, you
can get the money.


#4
I'm curious to know How much would you charge to fabricate a Oval
Cluster with a 9x7 Oval ruby and 12 Rd. Dia's sizes measuring 3mm
to 3.5mm around in White Gold 

Johneric, it all depends on how much money you need to make, and
what method you use to build it. I would roll out a piece of sheet
to 2 or 2.5mm or so and make a setting plate out of it - lay it out,
drill it, cut the oval and solder (or file) a raised edge if you
like, and then saw it out. It’s one piece and it should take an hour
or two at most. Likewise if you use the old method of clay and
investment it should also take an hour or two at most to make the
plate. If you’re going to try to juggle all those parts then, yeah,
that’s a real headache, and you don’t really say what the back is,
plus there’s setting. You do realize that the circumference of your
oval is 25mm and 12 x 3mm = 38 - 40mm (6 x 3mm + 6 x 3.5mm more like
45mm) with some clearance between stones, don’t you? If you’re
actually going to make some space- ey cluster like that then how you
span the gap between the center and the melee is going to be part of
your cost and efforts. Also style could be a factor - straight,
angled, stepped, offset, various things. For myself, I’d be very
happy to do that work for the price you say (I would be wholesale),
but that’s me, not you.

http://www.donivanandmaggiora.com


#5

Neil,

Your use of flux to hold the small parts together is interesting and
useful sounding.

If I where to do this job I think I would use a plate that I drill
and pierce but if I did choose to assemble the piece here is a method
that I have used in the past with good success.

Use modeling clay. If you want the cluster to have a slight dome
simply mound the clay slightly. Surround the clay with a raised edge
made of clay. In doing so you have created a reservoir.

Now lay out your cluster on the clay with the prongs facing upward.
After all piece are arranged properly fill the reservoir with
investment.

When the investment has dried peel away the clay and clean off any
residue of clay and investment.

You are now ready to solder.

Greg DeMark
www.demarkjewelry.com


#6

Hi Greg & Neil,

Use modeling clay. If you want the cluster to have a slight dome
simply mound the clay slightly. Surround the clay with a raised
edge made of clay. In doing so you have created a reservoir. 

I didn’t see the original on this but instead of clay try using sheet
wax. When you peel off the wax, if there is any residue it will melt
and soak into the modeling plaster… flux & solder. Clay won’t go
away with heat. Also modeling plaster will harden within minutes…I
don’t know how long investment takes.

Mark


#7
Use modeling clay. If you want the cluster to have a slight dome
simply mound the clay slightly. Surround the clay with a raised
edge made of clay. In doing so you have created a reservoir.

Greg has the way right, except I make a dam out of cardboard rolled
into a circle - like cereal box cardboard. I’ll say, though, that
even though that’s the time-honored tradition, I have gone to
sculpting wax instead of clay, because it cleans out easier. In any
case, especially with clay, you’ll have a hell of a time doing it
without steam. That’s how they make bracelets made out of settings
and all manner of things, too.

http://www.donivanandmaggiora.com


#8
Use modeling clay 

Greg try using The Green florist clay. It works Great. Im not
familiar with cutting out the plate. I have made a lot of rings using
tubing and wire. I first saw this in The book on Goldsmithing by
Alan Revere.

Thanks Johneric


#9

The cluster has been completed with a total of 50 welds using hard
solder. Please take a look and tell me how much you would have
charged.


Thanks Johneric


#10

Nice job, well executed, uniform, symmetrical, parallel, clean
joins. Truly a ring with integrity. The fact you did it in all hard
solder speaks for your skill.

$1600 at retail is what I would charge for that in 14K.