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Making a Two Piece Ring


#1

I am planning to make a ring out of two pieces of 0.75mm 14K gold
sheet. The first sheet will be cut to about 7mm wide by whatever
length the ring size requires (say 60 mm) and will be pierced with an
intricate design. The second sheet will be cut to the same size and
will be sweat soldered to the first. so that I will have a 7mm wide
by 1.5mm thick by about 60 mm long piece.

The ring will then be closed and soldered. The reason that I am using
two sheets of gold, is that I want the pierced parts to be backed by
gold and not to be see through to the skin of the finger. Also, I
need the thickness because I also plan to tube set some small, 2mm,
rubies into the ring.

I decided to try this with sterling first, so that I didn’t make any
expensive mistakes with the 14K.

All went well until I tried to close the ring.

First, I found the 1.5 mm metal very hard to work with. I bent it
with ring pliers and used a ring mandrel and rawhide mallet etc.
Once I got the ring to close, I discovered that the two ends were not
perfectly square to each other. I had a real hard time squaring the
two 1.5 mm x 7mm surfaces to match with no gap. This surface is much
larger that the typical ring that I have made our of 18 ga sterling
in the past. Also I annealed the ring several times while trying to
form it

Does anyone have any suggestions or tips? Regards Milt

Milt Fischbein - Jewellery Artist
Email @Milt_Fischbein_Jewel


#2

Haven’ tried any pierced overlay rings, but have done some heavy
guage sterling rings.

What I have done is,

Step 1- bend the strip so that the ends meet squarely, without
worrying about getting the ring round. This is generally somewhere
between a D shape and a round ring. It is easier to get the ends to
meet flush if you are not trying to get a perfect round shape, but
keep the ends straight and bend them so they meet each other in a
straight line.

Step 2- Solder the ring.

Step 3- Now, worry about the ring being round. Use a plastic or
rawhide mallet and a steel mandrel to get the ring to the desired
shape.

Lee Einer


#3

Form the rings separately, and then sweat them togehter afterwards.


#4

could you finish one ring first then make the 2nd one to go on top
of the other then solder the 2nd one has to be more metal than the first so to fit


#5
       I am planning to make a ring out of two pieces of 0.75mm
14K gold sheet. The first sheet will be cut to about 7mm wide by
whatever length the ring size requires (say 60 mm) and will be
pierced with an intricate design. The second sheet will be cut to
the same size and will be sweat soldered to the first. so that I
will have a 7mm wide by 1.5mm thick by about 60 mm long piece. 

Milt, you’ll have a harder time doing this with the gold than with
sterling. The main problem is that the pierced outer layer will wish
to stretch around the inner piece much more than you may wish, as it
may well distort the pattern. If you can tolerate this distortion,
then your main problem will be the seam.

In general, don’t bend the ring to a simple round shape and expect
the seam to square up. in the main portion of the band while you
bend it, the inner layer compresses a bit, and the outer layer
stretches. At the ends, neither of these happens, and the result is
too long an inner surface and too short an outer one, so the seam
ends up V shaped. the usual practice in such a situation would be to
leave a slight bit of extra length to the blank (so the short outer
layer is still long enough. then saw through the closed up seam,
perhaps several times, each time closing the seam again, till the
sided have been matched up. If you’ve got a lot to remove, you
might try a seperating disc for the first cut.

the other method, and one I prefer in many cases, may not always be
appropriate since it requires an even tighter bend in two places,
just in from both ends. whther this will work depends on the delicacy
of the pierced work at those areas. The idea is to bend your blank
by first bending the ends up at almost a 90 degree angle (soft curved
bends, still) Now bend the area between the two bends to complete
the closed figure. But it will give you a sort of D shaped ring, not
a round one. What this does is to keep the ends of the blank flat,
so they don’t distort, and you line up the ends in a straight
line/flat plane. this allows previously carefully cut ends to be
lined up. After the seam is soldered, you then put the D shaped ring
on a mandrel and use a mallet to round it out.

However, it may also be that you’ll find the lengthwise stretching
and distortion of the pierced layer when you bend your laminated
blank to be unacceptable. In this case, make the solid band the
right length to form the ring size you wish, and bend it around to a
ring, solder it and finish the outside surface to a smooth ripple
free surface. Then the pierced band is left a bit longer, (the
actual amount longer, for .75 mm sheet, will be about 2.3mm longer).
that will give an outer band that, once bent around, should just
slip over the inner one snuggly.

You then solder the two together AFTER they’ve been bend around into
telescoping bands.The soldering can be trickier, and you must take
care to get the two bands to fit snuggly together. but you’ll have a
lot less distortion of your pierced pattern this way.

In bending heavier stock, you may find that rather than ring
benders, which can be pretty brutal, it may be more effective to use
a groove in a hardwood block. the groove is either half round the
size you wish, or better, a V groove. You place the blank over the
groove, and a ring mandrel in the middle centered over the space
underneat the blank, and use a mallet on the mandrel, not the blank,
to forch the blank into the groove, forming it around the mandrel.
This avoids tool marks on the blank. And you can get a lot more
bending force with an impact from a hammer or mallet on your mandrel,
than with most pliers.

Peter


#6
    All went well until I tried to close the ring. <snip>  Does
anyone have any suggestions or tips? Regards Milt 

Since I have not tried this type of construction, my idea may be
totally unworkable, but could you make the interior ring first, then
make the outer ring to fit over the inner ring, and then fuse them
together. Just a thought.

K


#7

Milt, You will find it a lot easier to construct each ring
separately, fitting one inside the other and then using beads of
solder to join the two. I would suggest that you size them a little
smaller (like a quarter size) than required, and don’t forget to
allow for the thickness of the inner band when sizing the outer. You
will want a very snug fit that will require hammering into place.
You can then size the completed ring as needed. It is a good idea to
run through this with sterling, as you did with the first approach. I
use this method which was learned from past experience and find it
works well for me. On wedding bands that I do, pieces are added
after the ring is formed, and they are curved by dapping before
application. Good luck! Susan Ronan in beautiful Coronado CA, where
the mornings are overcast, but the days are sunny and in the low 70’s.


#8

Milt, 1st, A ring bending tool is a real asset; in forming thick and
awkward sectional and otherwise unusual shaped rings ( as well as
being an asset in some other bending projects).

Unless you are making this out of two different colors, you may be
able to do this out of one piece of 1.5 mm thick stock. IE:

  • Lay out your design to the outer circumference dimensions ( you
    can get these from a chart or from measuring the outer circumference
    of a 1.5 existing band.

  • After you make the ring, transfer the design to the outside of the
    ring. Consult " The Engravers Manual 94 if you need to understand a
    proper method for transferring a design. Another way would be to
    epoxy the scale drawing to the outside of the ring and use a fine
    pointed scribe to outline the design by making very fine punch marks
    through the drawing, into the metal( This second method would be a
    better method for the heavy handed). You can then burn off the
    epoxied paper and find a stippled ( sort of ) outline. 95 If
    necessary, and possessing the patience and skill with a pencil,
    darken the design/outline, carefully, with a 003. Mechanical pencil (
    Drafting pencil ).

  • Outline the design with a with a very small footed lozenge graver.
    95 You then cut the outline to the depth you want to achieve. ( Use
    whatever Gravers you feel comfortable using to do this ( Pointed
    Lozenge Etc Etc, There are even right hand and left hand blades, if
    you want a pure vertical wall.

  • The next step requires having or making ( out of old files ) an
    assortment of fine polished flat gravers. You want the gravers to
    leave a hig polished cut ( easier to finish that way ).

  • Remove metal until what you want to become negative space; appears
    as negative space.

  • You then matt, texture or burnish the worked area and file, sand
    and otherwise finish the ring, to desired perfection.

If You Want To Do This In 2 Colors; 95 Make a two color sandwich,
sweat it together with paste flux and the desired solder, then
proceed to the former process. ( as a matter of fact, if this is the
first time (or first few times) you are attempting

this, It would be prudent to use two colors, as the second color
acts as a depth indicator. If you purchase that bending tool and
become proficient with it, you’ll kick yourself, for not having it
with a project like this.

DM Allen


#9
After you make the ring, transfer the design to the outside of the
ring.  Consult " The Engravers Manual 94 if you need to understand
a proper method for transferring a design. 

Your response was fascinating. Forgive my ignorance as I have not
done any engraving. Would you mind relating where one could find
"the Engravers Manual 94?"

I have admired North West Coast Haida Indian designs for years and
hope your idea is a solution to transfer designs to be carved.

I have become addicted to Orchidian daiily contributions…from all
those Orchidians who are good, kind, creative folk worldwide,
amazing.

Virginia Vivier
Artes Primitiv
Apache Junction, AZ
@Artes_Primtiv


#10
In bending heavier stock, you may find that rather than ring
benders, which can be pretty brutal, it may be more effective to use
a groove in a hardwood block.

Peter you too use this method? Isn’t it useful. I find it allows
almost anyone to form thick gauge metal into rings. Well, D-shape. As
in <www.adam.co.nz/workshops/techniques>. Getting the ends together
requires careful whacks with a mallet, hitting down onto the one end
then the other.

Brian


#11

Hi,

I have been following the postings on this and wandered if any one
who has made them before could offer some advice. I have tried this
before and never been happy with the finished result. I can
construct it ok, but am not happy with the finish - how do you get
the bits of the internal solid band that you can see through the
pierced sections to look polished and finished, I just can’t get in
there to finish it properly no matter what I try. I am only using
thin sheet (sterling silver) 0.5mm for the pierced layer. So I
thought my polishing mop would get in there and do the job, but
apparently not. Any advice would be much appreciated as am getting
very frustrated with it. :slight_smile:

Many thanks,
Karen


#12
       Peter you too use this method? Isn't it useful. I find it
allows almost anyone to form thick gauge metal into rings. Well,
D-shape. As in <www.adam.co.nz/workshops/techniques>. Getting the
ends together requires careful whacks with a mallet, hitting down
onto the one end then the other. 

Hey Bri! Apparently equally depraved minds swim in the same gutter
or something (grin). Matching the ends can be tricky, but it’s also
sometimes tricky using common “bow bender” ring bending pliers, which
often are trying to bend the metal into a slightly cone shape, not a
cylender and the pliers which bend the metal around a proper arc end
up being the very costly fancy ones.

The mandril/grooved block method is a real old and traditional
method, but not as widely known since it doesn’t sell costly pliers
for the tool catalogs. That’s rather true of many methods which use
tools or materials you make yourself. Since it’s not in the catalog,
some folks don’t know it works. (Prips flux is another good example
of this phenomenon…) This method is essentially the poor mans
version of those handy bolt-down benchtop shank benders, except that
those press the metal into a steel die. The result is a handy long
lasting tool, but also a bunch of tool marks on the outside of the
ring blank where it gets crunched into that hard steel. The grooved
wood block with a mandrel and a mallet suffers only from the very
occasional limit that it’s not always quite a two handed procedure (
It’s sometimes tricky trying to hold the mallet, the mandrel, and the
blank positioned correctly over the groove all at the same time), and
may be slightly slower than the costly tools. But you make up the
time in not having to remove tool marks…

Peter


#13

Karen, I haven’t tried to make a ring such as being discussed
but…re cleaning and polishing into the inside parts…suggest you
try a tumbler with steel shot. It does wonders at getting into the
hard to get into places!

Cheers from Don at The Charles Belle Studio in SOFL where simple
elegance IS fine jewelry! @coralnut2


#14
The grooved wood block with a mandrel and a mallet suffers only
from the very occasional  limit that it's not always quite a two
handed procedure ( It's sometimes tricky trying to hold the 
mallet, the mandrel, and theblank positioned correctly over the
groove all at the same time) 

You can cut a groove at right angles to hold the ring stock tightly
so it leaves your hands free. You can do it at various angles and
widths to suit. The wooden blocks are very easy to make so I don’t
have any problems cutting them about. I quite often use the torch to
close thicker ring shanks when I don’t want to mark them. I all ways
like to bend my shanks as round as I can get them, this comes from
constant nagging from my German mentor when I was young :slight_smile:

Chris


#15
how do you get the bits of the internal solid band that you can see
through the pierced sections to look polished and finished, I just
can't get in there to finish it properly no matter what I try.  I
am only using thin sheet (sterling silver) 0.5mm for the pierced
layer.

Before you assemble the inner and outer bands, polish the inner
surface completely. Assemble carefully, and solder using proper
methods to avoid fire scale. i’d recommend prips flux only as the
soldering flux for this, or perhaps a little of the liquid “self
pickling” fluxes such as batterns in addition. Avoid the white paste
fluxes. Be careful in soldering to use only the least amount of
solder needed, so it doesn’t flood into the previously polished
areas. And i’d suggest a medium silver solder, rather than hard. The
lower heat won’t do as much damage to the polish. After pickling,
your original polish won’t be quite as shiney, but it still should
be halfway decent, mostly needing rouge, rather than anything more
agressive. Now, rather than using brushes or buffs, which won’t, as
you’ve noticed, get quite into all the nooks and crannies, use a
tumbler. If you choose the right media, such as finely ground
walnut shell or corncob with rouge or dri shine compound, you should
be able to get most of those areas looking pretty good.

However, I’d also suggest that this may be a case of expecting
unreasonable results from the materials you’re using. a bright
background wouldn’t be quite so hard to get in gold or platinum, but
in silver, it’s more difficult. Plus, it’s not permanent. Even if
you get it bright, you cannot easily prevent it from tarnishing over
time. So why, then, are you designing with a finish that the
material itself isn’t suited for? The traditional finish for this
sort of thing involvs recognizing that the backgrounds on silver
items are hard to keep tarnish free, so one deliberately darkens
them, getting a nice contrast, and choosing the raised outer surface
to be the one left bright. If you don’t like this look then at
least consider choosing a finish which you CAN easily restore, in
spite of the difficulty of getting into the background areas.
Choices such as sand or bead blasting, or the use of a gentle scratch
brush come to mind, rather than a high polish. All of these are
easy to put into the background areas, and can easily be restored
if needed. Trying to put a high polish on areas that cannot keep it
over time is fighting the materials intrinsic properties, rather than
working with it. Design choices one makes are not just the shapes
and lines of one’s design. They also involve choosing methods and
materials appropriate to the design, or altering the design to fit
the intrinsic properties of the material used. If a process is
driving you nuts, consider whether you’re maybe trying the wrong
process, or insisting on an unfortunatly chosen end result. No
sense tilting at windmills.

Peter


#16
 Your response was fascinating.  Forgive my ignorance as I have
not done any engraving.  Would you mind relating where one could
find "the Engravers Manual 94?" 

I have admired North West Coast Haida Indian designs for years and
hope your idea is a solution to transfer designs to be carved.

I don’t know how the 94 got in there, “The Engraver’s Manual” has
been around for years. I think, if you look for it in one of the book
sections of a large jewelry supplier, you should be able to find it.
I’ll try to describe a transfer method for you.

  1. Put your design on tracing paper, remembering that it is a good
    idea to keep the lines as thin as possible, for engraving or
    piercing. In piercing, Logic runs: trying to approximate the
    thickness of the saw blade. This can be best achieved with different
    sized Drafting Pencils and Pens.

  2. After you have the design on tracing paper, turn the paper over
    and take the side of a soft graphite pencil and rub the pencil over
    the the back of the design; the logic here being to leave a thin
    layer of graphite on the reverse side of the design.

  3. Put a thin coat of Transfer Wax on the surface of the metal to
    be worked. This should be available in engraving supplies, If not, a
    wax that will spread thin leaving a slightly sticky feel should
    work.

  4. Using a paint brush dipped in talc, baby powder will do, coat the
    wax.

  5. Position the design , on the tracing paper over the metal,
    graphite coating down, gently running the finger over the top of the
    tracing paper.

  6. Remove the tracing paper slowly.

  7. Very carefully, draw over the impression if needed.

  8. Proceed to finishing, taking care to keep the fingers off the
    transfered design. It might be prudent to keep the design close at
    hand , in case you need to correct any slips.

    Another version of this would be to create a Stencil, then moving
    directly to step 3. This was a practice, much used, in lettering for
    hand engraving. Any further questions, regarding this, I would be
    happy to answer.

North West Coast Haida Indian Design? I have a great book of their
pottery and as such, their designs. Great reference material!

Re: In bending heavier stock, you may find that rather than ring
benders, which can be pretty brutal, it may be more effective to use
a groove in a hardwood block.

Peter you too use this method? Isn’t it useful. I find it allows
almost anyone to form thick gauge metal into rings. Well, D-shape.
As in <www.adam.co.nz/workshops/techniques>. Getting the ends
together requires careful whacks with a mallet, hitting down onto the
one end then the other.

The only time, I ever found the ring bending tool to be difficult,
was when one of my apprentices neglected to properly anneal the metal
being worked on, and tried to compensate by using the ring bender;
like a jack hammer. Used properly, the ring bender is extremely
accurate and provides consistent alignment for parts, as complicated,
as those for fine pierced, cluster or ballerina rings.

DM Allen

#17
 2.  After you have the design on tracing paper, turn the paper
over and take the side of a soft graphite pencil and rub the pencil
over the the back of the design; the logic here being to leave a
thin layer of graphite on the reverse side of the design. 	 5.
Position the design , on the tracing paper over the metal, graphite
coating down, gently running the finger over the top of the tracing
paper. 	 

Since the back of the tracing paper is covered with a uniform
coating of graphite, just running your finger over the design would
seem like it’s transferring a uniform coating of graphite, not the
design, wouldn’t it? I’d guess you need, with a thin stylus, to
retrace your design lines, not generally rub the whole thing. Or
did you, when originally drawing the design, press hard enough to
emboss the paper, so the design forms, on the reverse, slightly
raised lines, which might perhaps then be coated with a bit more of
the graphite as well as being raised, and, which would preferentially
leave more graphite on the wax than the un-embossed areas between the
line? Did I understand you correctly here?

Peter


#18
   The only time, I ever found the ring bending tool to be
difficult, was when one of my apprentices neglected to properly
anneal the metal being worked on, and tried to compensate by using
the ring bender; like a jack hammer.  Used properly, the ring
bender is extremely accurate and provides consistent alignment for
parts, as complicated, as those for fine pierced, cluster or
ballerina rings. 

The bench mounted ring bender is indeed an accurate tool. In most
cases, it does a fine job. You’ll find the mandrel and the wood
block to leave less of a tool mark on the outside, when using very
heavy gauge metal, especially with softer metal. The example I’m
thinking of is bending up ring shanks from, for example, 2 -
2.5mm thick platinum stock. The platinum is resistant enough that
some force is needed, but soft enough that the bending die surfaces
will leave somewhat of a mark on the outside of the ring. the wood
block and mandrel won’t. This is somewhat of an extreme example,
though. More of a problem are the hand held “bow bending” heavy duty
bending pliers. Again, they’re often just fine. But because the
inner and outer jaws aren’t hitting the metal in parallel except with
quite thin stock, if one is bending wider stock into a shank, the
bends form a slight conical form, not a cylinder. In a few cases,
this can cause a slight problem, such as bringing a seam closed for
soldering, since the edges don’t want to quite line up from side to
side, requiring then some additional tweaking. And the bow benders
leave very definite marks on the outside of the bands unless you go
to some care to cover them with something soft, such as leather. I
have a pair of benders where the outside jaw is nylon, and these are
much gentler, but there are still plenty of times I just use the
grooved block of wood and the mallet.

Peter


#19
    I have tried this before and never been happy with the
finished result. I can construct it ok, but am not happy with the
finish - how do you get the bits of the internal solid band that
you can see through the pierced sections to look polished and
finished, I just can't get in there to finish it properly no matter
what I try.  I am only using thin sheet (sterling silver) 0.5mm for
the pierced layer. 
An assortment of very tiny flat gravers with well polished points. I

make mine out of old broken drill bits and old files. I polish mine
on an ultra fine ruby stone, after sharpening. If these are footed
IE: the tips are on an angle so as to act like the flat of an ice
skate, with the front of the runner peeling thin strips of metal,
like a wood plane. The object of using these is to make clean lines,
while bright cutting, at the same time. To finish; make some fine
burnishers, again; discarded drill bits or fine quality carbon or
high speed steel, polished to a high gloss and some rouge. Rub these
over the cutout area. A little .03 aluminum oxide mixed with water or
a light oil would work too.

DM Allen


#20
    ... but there are still plenty of times I just use the grooved
block of wood and the mallet. 

Me too. Exclusively. The only opposition I’ve had to this method was
when I was introducing it to a class in a jewellery school. I was
co-teaching with a rather more traditional jeweller. He violently
objected to malleting directly onto the mandrel (when forcing a heavy
gauge silver strip into a 3/4" wooden groove). In his opinion once
you let them do this it’s only a matter of time before one of them
will pick up a steel hammer and hammer the mandrel directly. His
solution was to limit what we allow the students so that they don’t
damage our tools. I thought at the time as now that was an unecessary
and almost unsustainable attitude applied to other areas of
jewellery-making. I think it was possibly more about personality
politicks.

Brian