ahem, older jewellers
Awhile ago I was asked to make a three stone ring with that sort of
head, duplicating a worn out ring that survived the Titanic, or so
I’m told. I made it in a similar manner as you Hans with a few
challenges thrown in.
The center was six prong but the sides were five prong. The five were
not evenly spaced in the original. The two inner prongs of the
satellite stones had to meet up with the two side prongs of the
center. These four prongs were really the intersection of flats made
in the basic cone, so that there were essentially walls or bulkheads
(this is what gave the ring structural integrity) that flanked the
center stone (this area not cut out like the balance of the prongs,
resulting in V shape tips where the outlines of the 3 diamonds
converged. And these settings were lower and more flared than the
bezel punch could make so between my two 17 and 28 degree sets and a
few ball punches (if memory serves I used a tapered hole just barely
larger than the base of the cone and then dapped the prongs outward)
I eventually got the look of the original. Oh, and the cross section
of the prongs was thicker at the base and finer at the tips. Oh and
the stones were old european with pretty wavy girdles.
The underbezels I did not attach individually. After I soldered the 3
heads (cones) together I attached a single chunk of gold. (prongs
were plat) This allowed me to carve things up true to the original.
Come to think of it I may have carved out the scallops between the
prongs after I had the 3 cones together as the splay between prongs
was not symmetrical on the original. Since they were paying for an
exact duplicate (accounting for wear in the process) I couldn’t take
the shortcut of finishing three heads and then plopping them
together, its just a subtly different set of proportions. Sometimes
the hard way is the easy way.
I’ve got pics somewhere but my photography is not fit for public