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Flush setting cushion cut sapphire


#1

Im new to this forum, and am a little confused how it works, so I
apologize in advance if I don’t present my post in the preferred
manner.

Im not really a jeweler but last year I hammered an old silver coin
down to the size of my finger and hollowed out / smoothed the inside
to fashion a ring. Recently Ive come into a small (~93mg) cushion
cut sapphire and Id like to set it flush to the band, I know for
sure that the band is wide and thick enough to hold the stone. Im at
a loss as to exactly how I would go about doing it, especially since
the stone is rectangular / squareish and not round.

If I make a practice ring I might be able to figure it out with the
good old trial and error method, but any would be
greatly appreciated.

Jordan


#2

Jordan,

We fools rush in where angels fear to tread. IDK what color your
0.93 ct sapphire is, but if it’s decent, you’re playing with some
cash should you chip the stone. However, sapphire is a hard stone,
and if you’re careful and practice (maybe more than once?) on a
copper ring and a cushion cut CZ, perhaps you’ll do OK when you come
to see the sapphire. There things are hard to describe in words.
There are numerous videos of flush setting on Youtube, and I suggest
you start there. There is one by solham harrison that is close to
what you are describing, except it is a round stone.

Search for gypsy setting @ Youtube. If you like books and want a
little more education on various jewelry processes, Tim McCreight’s
Practical Metalsmith is a good one and even a cheap older edition
will tell you a lot about various jewelry processes, including making
your own tools. If you order yourself a Rio Grande catalog, you can
leaf through it and see all the different tools and figure out their
uses. You can keep the catalog in the necessary room and read it
there, if you like, a little at a time.

A few points. You will need to drill a decent sized hole through the
band so that you can clean the back of the stone, getting solvent and
preferably even a toothbrush in there, or it will be dull as can be
after picking up dirt and grease. Then you will need to enlarge this
at the top to a very precisely sized and shaped and angled cavity to
fit your stone. You will note that the videos all show flush setting
round, calibrated sized stones (that is, exact size of stone matched
to size of the setting burr), because it is so much easier to do this
way. At most you have to wiggle the burr around a little to make the
hole the right size. It is certainly possible to make a squished cone
shaped hole for a cushion shaped stone, but you are not talking about
doing something easy, even if you do have a flex shaft and the right
sized burrs. My guess is that you would make the biggest round hole
that would still be small enough and then use very small burrs or
needle files to file out the hole to fit the stone just flush with
the surface of the ring. Remember the stone has to have at least four
good bearing points to sit level while you are burnishing. You will
need some sticky wax or something to put the stone in and out of the
setting maybe a hundred times as you cut and try. If you get the hole
too big, the culet (point in the back) of the stone could protrude
and be very uncomfortable for the wearer.

This is kind of like starting to read War and Peace two thirds of
the way through, but I suppose some will do it this way. Not
impossible, just difficult. Good luck, and ask on here if there are
points you don’t understand after looking at videos and books. Hope
this helps.


#3

I doubt the that stone will fit into that ring. You will most
likelyhave to put a bezel on the top to hold the gem. You would need
some serious depth to flush set that. Easy to tell by holding the
ring up to look through it and hold up the stone needy to it. If the
gem is deeper than the ring, make a new plan.


#4

Hi Shannon, & Jordan,

I hadn’t thought about how deep the sapphire would be. Using an on
line gemstone weight estimator for a square cushion with a depth of
2/3 of width, I get a stone with dimensions of 5.4x5.4x3.6mm for a
0.93 ct sapphire. If the whole stone is 3.6mm deep and the table was
flush with the surface of the ring, the ring would be 3.6mm thick or
just a bit more. This equals about 9/64 of an inch and it’s clunky, I
agree, but not impossible.

Some folks are into massive and some just don’t know any better yet,
right?


#5

If you don’t have the stone yet you could request a shallow one. I
assumed you already had it. Flush setting is all about the proper
size tight hole. Almost press fit. Not easy with round much less
oval, but you have to try it or you won’t know. Don’t let anyone
ever tell you you can’t do something. Just try it


#6

I have just finished setting courses at two community colleges where
I taught Gypsy/Flush setting. I tell my students that this style of
setting is about 6+ out of 10 on the difficulty scale! The nice part
is that setting on .925silver it is the most easiest metal to work
with. It can be very ‘confidence building’.

Gerry Lewy


#7

Gerry, how would one find a listing of your classes and locations
for 2014? Thanks, Michelle


#8

Round stones in a Gypsy/Flush setting is about 5, out of 10 on the
’Difficulty Scale’.

I sometimes set “Princess stones” in a Tiffany style band using the
"Gypsy Setting" method.

Now that would be a definite challenge. I would only use a #006
round bur, #007 bud bur, then when finished I always “Bright-Cut” the
inside of the bezel. Not for the ‘faint of heart’, either! Gerry
Lewy.