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How to make an Omega chain


#1

This necklace belongs to a friend of mine

So, I can’t take it apart to see how it is made.

The Great oracle in the cloud (google) was not all the forthcoming
either.

What I do know, is it is regarded as a “Psuedo-Chain” (not a real
chain, but one that pretends to be)

and that it’s links are crimped onto something else. Which I get.
But what I am looking for, is what exactly is that something else
and does anybody have pictures of it?

Thank you all who here who are so generous with your knowledge!

Christopher Lund
Neurascenic - Industrial Design


#2

I’ve seen plenty of those worn out and distended. It’s a multi strand
weave with bands of thin material wrapped and the seem
fused/soldered/welded. not sure how one would do that by hand, and
i’ve never seen how they are machined.commonly called omega chain or
necks.


#3

As a designer, you should be able to work this out, without knowing
the diameter of the piece, length and weight, one cannot tell if its
hollow or solid.

this makes a difference how its done.

If solid, it will most likely use the principle of the plastic
popper beads, tho being metal each link will be swaged down onto its
neibour.

If larger in dia say 3/8ths in and hollow then each link will have
on one end a semicircular groove around it and the other end will be
hollow with a cemicircular bump inside it.

Then when pushed together they will be swaged down just enough for
the groove and bump to interlock but still have sideways moving
clearance.

The swaging will be done between 2 half round rolls on a rolling
mill.


#4

Christopher, Omega chains are certainly “real” chains. Inside is a
chain made like a watchband or something like chain-mail. I don’t do
chains so I can’t name the link exactly - like a woven mesh, in gold
or whatever the chain is made of. The things that you see on the
outside are sleeves that are made exactly to fit over the inner
chain, finishingit off. Not so complicated, but not something you’d
want to try to make without machinery either.


#5

Christopher-The omegas that I have repaired have a fine metal mesh
that the outer links are crimped over.

Once broken, a b***h to repair. Once they crimp, it’s time for a new
one.

I do not recommend wearing anything heavy on them.

Have fun and make lots of jewelry.

Jo Haemer
timothywgreen.com


#6

Christopher, unless you are going to do it for your own satisfaction
only, I can’t imagine you will be happy with the results without
several years of full-time practice. I don’t think that even Leonid
would like to tackle this one!

Lee


#7

Thanks everybody for chiming in on this.

Ted, do you have images of anything of the sort?

Jo,
FYI, I don’t exactly plan on making an omega chain… really. but
rather want to use that technique in making something else.

Probably 10 to 15 links at the most any my links would be larger
than you would typically see in a real Omega.

Any Idea if such an internal mesh can be purchased?

Challenging, yet, the method looks enticing.

Does anybody have an image of the internals? would be greatly
appreciated.

Cheers!

Christopher Lund
Neurascenic - Industrial Design


#8

Sorry, no images, but clearly recall seeing a stainless steel
version of the omega chain using the plastic popper bead principle of
linking each segment to its neibour.

As for making such links, the components will be made on a
production CNC lathe, then assembled with a swaging press.

Its a development of the GI id tag chain also in stainless steel.

This principle is also used in fishing swivels. these are usually in
brass. These are made from short lengths of tube connected with wire
which has a head swaged each end, the tube is then closed around this
swaged head.

Hope you follow.


#9

Christopher- Just buy a cheap plated or silver one and take it apart.

Destruction can be a great teacher. I know, cause I learn from
messing up stuff. After 43 years in the trade I’m an expert at
screwing stuff up and fixing it so it looks like it never happened. I
guess that makes me a Master Goldsmith:-) Have fun and make lots of
jewelry.

Jo Haemer
timothywgreen.com


#10
Any Idea if such an internal mesh can be purchased? 

Challenging, yet, the method looks enticing.

Christopher, I’ll be the first to say that anything is possible. If
I were to say that hand-makinga true omega chain were impossible,
Orchid would light up with postingsabout how people imagine they
could do it if they wanted to, though they never actually have.
There are chains that only exist because there is machinery built to
make them, and the omega is one of them. No doubt a person could
spend a month making one and soldering the half million tiny joints,
but I’ll respectfully suggest that we all can find better things to
do with our time…