Mabe pearl earring made into ring without taking it out of 14kt setting?

Hi, i have a single moby pearl earing, set in 14kt bezel. I believe there is some glue holding it in the setting
Well I’d like to turn it into a ring . Is there someway to keep it in its original bezel setting and solder it with the stone in place ?
Or will it just burn ?
Thank you for your ideas and help

Don’t try to solder near that pearl. It almost certainly will be damaged!

Moby pearls are usually assembled from a hollow hemispherical shell of pearl with a relatively flat cab shaped mother-of pearl back and a plastic or resin core. Heat of almost any amount that is too hot to hold for more than a few seconds will cause the resin core to melt and expand and become unglued. Soaking in acetone or other chemical is likely to create the same result. Damaged Moby pearls are all but impossible to repair.

It is possible to remove the pearl from the setting, but extreme care is necessary. I would first make sure that the pearl isn’t tightly set by the bezel, most likely it’s not, Then I would grip the back strap of the setting with hot tweezers right at the post that goes into the pearl and twist on the top of pearl gently with bare fingers. But I’ve done that kind of thing many times before, so I know what it’s supposed to feel like when it’s getting close to either loosening up or burning up.

If you’re not familiar with this technique of ungluing pearls, I’d defer that portion of the job to someone that is. After that, you can make a shank and solder it on like you would normally do, and re-glue the pearl. Or you could do it really right and set it using the bezel, but remember that the pearl hemisphere is hollow with a plastic backing and not very resistant to damage.

Whatever you do with that pearl, It’s probably going to be risky no matter how you do it, so a conversation with the owner concerning the risk is highly recommended prior to any attempting work.

Good luck!


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Could the setting be laser welded to a ring shank while set, or does that cause too much damaging heat as well?

My instinct, however, would be to unset the pearl and set it again after fabricating the ring.


You could also try soaking the earring in hot water to loosen the glue. (Isn’t it a Mabe Pearl?)

You are going to have to unset the pearl. They come out relatively easily MOST of the time. Be sure your customer is aware of the risk. You cant just laser weld a shank to it. That bezel is not strong enough on it’s own. If the customer torques that shank at all the bezel will bend easily. The bezel needs to be closed in on the back to make it much stronger then you can add the shank. Some under carriage work would be nice so there is not a flat section in the inside shape of the ring.

My experience is that trying to make anything into anything else can be problematic. Cutting the top off of a ring and soldering a bail to it rarely results in a well balanced pendant. Turning a purposely light-weight earring into a ring is another one, as John pointed out. It would be better to unset the pearl and make a ring for it, complete with a proper bezel.

Lasering it is an option, but it’s still a significant risk. Hitting the pearl with the beam will blow a hole in it and even if you get away with it, you still end up with a very light weight ring.

I’ve seen it spelled both ways, ‘mabe’ is probably the correct spelling.


A PUK or laser welder will do it.

Don’t do it. That bezel and mounting are way too lightweight to be used as a ring. Also Mabe pearls are just a very thin filled dome. Not suitable for wearing on the hand. It’d be damaged in short order.
I have worked on many of these over the decades. Removing and remounting them is a dicey operation.
Just have a bail laser welded onto it and make a pendant out of it.
Have fun and make lots of jewelry.
Jo Haemer

Thank you all for your info & advice .

Moby Pearl was the oyster who took my leg!

Please excuse any typos-- curse my clumsy digits…

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I changed the spelling in the title.

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jhaemer52-- I was wondering how you felt about round pearls on rings and do you tell your customers to take them off when washing their hands ? thank you for your time .

I do not use pearls in my jewelry

I know I wasn’t asked directly, but I’ll use whatever a customer wants to use, it’s for them after all, not me. I do explain the pro’s and cons of each component, sometimes explaining that the final piece will be more of a cashmere sweater than a Levi’s jacket, and it will respond and last in direct proportion to the care and handling that it receives.

Washing hands is a mixed thing. Other than adding a little haze, plain soap and water won’t cause any damage to pearls, but leaving your jewelry on the sink and walking out of the bathroom without it is a fairly common way to lose it.


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Yes, it is Mabe pearl.

Regular soap and water won’t hurt a pearl. Every day wear on a pearl ring
will eventually damage it. Remember pearl is only 2.5 on the Mohs hardness
scale just a step up from gypsum.
I recommend that if my client wants a fine pearl ring to only wear it for
special occasions. If they want to wear it daily I have them buy a spare
replacement pearl that matches the original that will need to be replaced
I made a lovely simple black pearl ring for my sister and bought an extra
for her. After about three years we needed to replace it.
Have fun and make lots of jewelry.
-Jo Haemer

Thanks , I hear you .