Metal gauge for a rattle

Hi Folks,

Quite some time ago on the forum there was a thread about making baby
rattles. Well, I will become a grandfather for the first time in
February of the new year, and I thought that it might be nice to make
a sterling silver rattle for the little mipper as a remembrance of
grandpa. What I need to know is, what would be the preferred or best
suited gauge of metal to use? Any other “tips” would be greatly
appreciated also.


i sell lots of material in the 24-26 gauge range for rattle makers.
Twisted wire at the handle-ball joint looks real nice. Fill rattle
with garnet pebbles. 1/4" sterling tubing makes good handles.

Best of luck and congratulaltions,
Dan Woodard
Indian Jewelers Supply co.
Gallup, New Mex

Hi, I’m in the process of doing the very same thing. I began to look
into dapping dies, but once I saw the price I decided to find another
way or forget about it entirely. My solution, inspired by another
subscriber to this list, was to cast them. Then came the question of
how to get a wax sphere model. What I did was to take a large quartz
marble (what I had on hand) and suspend it from a piece of
monofilament with epoxy. Then I melted down some spare purple carving
wax and dipped the marble. When the wax cooled I took a scalpel and
cut around the sphere, then carefully removed the halves. The result
was a wax model of fairly uniform thickness of what looks to be about
20 gauge.

To assure proper alignment when it comes time to solder the halves, I
keyed the two pieces with alignment pegs made of wax and set in the
interior of the model.

I have not cast yet, but by all indications it looks like its going
to work out better than I expected.

What I want to know is how to make it chime like a xylophone like I
have seen now and then. If anyone knows how to construct the chime
mechanism please help me out.

Oh, and to answer the original question; as thin as structurally
possible. 22 or 24 gauge would be ideal.

Thanks and I hope this helps

Hi Skip: I made a rattle last year for my grandchild. I went up to
my studio to look for my notes and, of course, couldn’t find them.
(The recent thread about organizing suggests that chaos is a sign of
creativity). Anyhow, I’m pretty sure that I used 20 gauge silver.
Probably because I was using a hydraulic press to form the spheres.
Also, keep in mind that the handle should not be like a stick on a
lollipop; baby sticks everything in his mouth. So, I made the handle
in a bracelet shape, using twisted wire of two colors, silver and gold
filled. I have a picture of my grandson with the handle in his mouth.
I hope this helps. Frances

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