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Placing pin stems


#1

Hello, I hope some members have some suggestions or comments for what
should be a very simple problem. I am having trouble positioning pin
stems on my fabricated silver pieces that are vertically designed.
(No problem with horizontal placement, that’s easy) By vertical
pieces, I mean long rectangular or shield shapes,for example a pin
1/2" x 3/12". Every jewelry technique book that I have checked says
to place the vertical pin stems in the middle, or middle near the
top. When I do this, my pins lean or wobble to the sides). Am I
missing a secret here, ie the size or length of the pin stem? One
friend suggested soldering balls or half spheres near the edges. Has
anyone tried this? Many Thanks for your help, Sally


#2

It’s the only solution that I know of. I have done it more that once.
When people want to use their pins as pearl enhancers, often times some
type of feet will be needed to stabilize the piece.


#3

Hi Sally. I have made a number of long pins such as you
describe—very narrow in width and long in length. I have had most
success in using long pin stems placed diagonally across the pin. I
make them as long as possible and I put the latching part at the
bottom, so that if the pin should accidentally open it will not fall
off. Hope this helps. Alma


#4

Hi Sally have you considered the tie tack back for a pin back… I use
them all the time on any misshapen piece that may have a balance
problem or a size problem that can not accept a whole pin back…the
hole size that’s made by both pins is the same size the only problem
with this method that I have come against is the clients unwillingness
to wear something that’s not meant for them (TIE TACK Vs PIN BACK)
…other wise it works great .you can have as many pins on there to
securely hold the piece in any position desired . hope it works for
you. bye Hratch


#5

I like using a double pin stem. This kind of mechanism stabilizes
the piece and keeps it from rocking. It is important that the pin
stems be parallel and that they move together. I also find the
craftsmanship involved in custom-making this type of mechanism helps
sell a piece.


#6

Hate to butt in. . .actually, no I don’t. This problem of pin backs.
Might it be considered as a problem not of mechanics, but of design?
Get to the library and take a look at some of the ancient Etruscan
"fibulae" or the Celtic cloak pins that are like “C’s” with pins that
swivel on the “C”. You won’t know what I’m talking about until you
see them for yourself. Perhaps what you are trying to create
requires more than a conventional/comercial pin back. If you are
making production pieces, on the other hand, why not try fabricating
a “double” pin? I can e-mail you a diagram, or invent one for you
just to get you started in the right direction. Will the woman who
started this thread (sorry, deleted the e-mail) e-mail me a scan of a
rough sketch of her pin? Let’s see if we can shift out of the
paradigm. If you think my response here is obtuse, contact Charles
Lewton-Brain. He’ll understand this tack. by the way Ch


#7

Another option, if the piece is heavy, is to make a double pin. In
this case you solder a tube across the top horizontally. You insert
material for a pin stem that is long enough to go through the tube and
leave ends that are long enough to reach almost to the bottom on both
sides of the tube. The catch can be made by simply curling up and
over the ends of a bar of metal that you solder horizonatally to the
base of the pin.

Sharpen your pin stems and bend them so they spread wider than the
catch hooks; that will give you your tension.


#8
    I like using a double pin stem.  This kind of mechanism
stabilizes the piece and keeps it from rocking.  It is important
that the pin stems be parallel and that they move together.  I also
find the craftsmanship involved in custom-making this type of
mechanism helps sell a piece. 

That sounds very intriguing, but I must confess I’ve never actually
seen one. Would you be willing to explain the construction of it in
more detail? I’m a bit fuzzy how that would work, but I make most of
my findings myself and would love to know how you do it. Thanks!

-Kieran


#9

Hi, I make a lot of long, attenuated and slender brooches, often w/ a
round cross esction (so they are very prone to rocking). I use 18 to
20 guage stainless wire for pin stems and i bend the pinstem itself
into a serpentine or “s” configuration in the span from the joint to
the catch. The bends should’t be tight but rather fluid and will
easily poass through fabric.

Make the pin stem as long as possible. I use 18 gauage when the span
is very long since 20 on a long span tends to flex and may pull from
the catch.

The bent and curved pinstem also allows the piece to sit well in the
display case. remeber: pieces must not only function on the body,
but also on display.

Andy Cooperman


#10

Ceil, Have you considered a double pin stem? I use these alot because
they are fairly easy to make and hold narrow vertical type pins well.
To make one start with tubing that has the same inner dia… as your
pin stem gage. Solder a piece of this tubing at the top of your pin
running horizontally across the back. The longer this tubing is the
more stable your pin will be. Next determine where the pin stem will
latch. Here solder a wire about the same gage as your pin stem
parallel to the tubing at the top. leave the wire about the same
size as the piece of tubing above it and instead of soldering the
whole length of the wire bend about an 1/8" on each end towards you
before you attach it. After soldering curve these towards each other
and then down to make two hooks. These hooks should curve up so that
the finished wire piece is smaller in width than the tubing (so the
pin stem will spring into the hooks). Then just place a piece of pin
stem wire in the tubing bend it 90 degrees where it comes out on both
sides, cut the pin stem wire so it is just a little longer than the
distance between the tubing and latch, sharpen the tips and maybe do
a little finish work on the ends of the wire that makes the
hooks/catch, and you have a custom pin stem that will hold a big pin
that is vertically oriented. I’ll send a drawing to the ftp
directory to make things clearer than my ramblez…

hope this helps,

Jeff Cleveland aka JevFro
505 E. 3rd
Ellensburg, Washington 98926
JevFro@hotmail.com
http://www.cwu.edu/~clevelaj


#11

I have always heard the “double pins” called “barrette” pin stems,
called after the way hair barrettes are designed. They are very easy
to construct and are extremely stable when pinned in any direction.
Gini


#12

Andy - I’ve long been an admirer of your work - got to see some of it
in person at Nancy Sachs a few years ago in St. Louis. I’m hoping
that Fl. Society of Goldsmiths will be able to get you to teach at
Wildacres sometime soon. Keep up the fabulous work! Gini


#13
I use 18 to 20 gauge stainless wire for pin stems and I bend the
pinstem itself 

Andrew,

Would you be willing to share your supplier of stainless wire for
your pin stems? I have been in search of stainless wire and I would
appreciate any on suppliers.

Thank you in advance for time spent.

Linda Crawford
Linda Crawford Designs
@Linda_Crawford
http://www.jps.net/lcrawford


#14

I am following this description until “Sharpen your pin stems and
bend them so they spread wider than the catch hooks; that will give
you your tension” - could you take another stab at explaining this so
I can replicate it? How if you sharpen them can you simultaneously
make them wider than the catch hooks? Also, when I have tried a
variation of this, I placed my tubing perpendicular to the line that
the pin stem followed - the end of the pin stem wire close to the
tubing (vs. the end by the catch) would be bent down and the pin stem
coming through the tubing would then be bent at a 90 degree angle so
that it would not come out of the tubing and it would follow the
horizontal line of the piece to the clasp. Could you let me know if we
are on the same page and clear up my confusion on the part in quotes?
Thanks! Shael

ps. Trying to describe these techniques without a picture makes me
aware once more how good technical writers are worth their weight in
gold!! And I don’t profess to be one of those!


#15
    why not try fabricating a "double" pin?  I can e-mail you a
diagram, or invent one for you just to get you started in the right
direction. 

G’day; I think that quite a few people - me included - would be very
interested to see your solutions to this pin problem. Would it be
possible for you to put your diagram(s) into the Orchid FTP site?
With perhaps an Orchid posting to explain things? We’d be very
grateful, I’m sure.

Orchid FTP Server:
Upload using an FTP software
ftp://ganoksin.com/incoming/ganoksin

        /\      John Burgess
       / /
      / /      Johnb@ts.co.nz    
     / /__|\
    (_______)

#16

If you have access to back issues of the Lapidary Journal, there is
an illustrated how-to article in the March, 1998 addition which
explains how to fabricate a double pin finding for a brooch.

Lee Einer


#17

another thought to the " fibulae" use a stickpin clutch on the end
of the stem - that way no one gets stuck or scratched from the sharp
end - that is how I use the fibulae - I love them as the pin can be
set on the fabric almost in any direction I have made fish, hearts ,
stars & etc… Aileen - agem


#18

Hi Linda,

Yeah, Small Parts Inc in Forida. I don’t have their number up in the
office, but I can get it to you if you need it. Order type 304V,
and order it by 1000’s as opposed to gauge. 20 ga. is approx. 32
1000’s and the order # is SGX-320.

To convert to thousandths, find the gauge # on your B and S sheet/
wire gauge (the round one) and flip it over, most have 1000’s on the
back.

Also, I used to use Truchrome stainless orthodontic wire from a
dental supplier, works the same.

Good luck, Andy Cooperman


#19
   I use 18 to 20 gauge stainless wire for pin stems and I bend the
pinstem itself 

My favorite source for stainless steel wire is:

Small Parts Inc., P.O. Box 381736, Miami, FL 33138, Stainless steel
hard drawn wire; nesting tubing; various ball bearings; titanium
hardware, low melting metal alloys.

the size I prefer for pinstems is their .029" wire. It is polished
and hard drawn, so hard you have to cut it with a separating disc or
snap it with flat nose pliers-it will dent your snips. It is about
$2.75 for 25 feet. They have a sampler set of 25 feet of 9 different
sizes or so for something ;like $15.00. Charles

Charles Lewton-Brain
Box 1624, Ste M, Calgary, Alberta, T2P 2L7, Canada


#20

The key (ambiguous) word there is “spread”…Not by forging them
wider, but by spreading apart the two pin stems. You end up with a U
shape where the base of the U is narrow (where it goes through the top
tube) and the arms of it widen out into a very open-topped U. Hard to
describe…did that help? Sharpening the stems has nothing to do
with this stage—it just precedes it.

Also, when I have tried a variation of this, I placed my tubing
perpendicular to the line that the pin stem followed - the end of the
pin stem wire close to the tubing (vs. the end by the catch) would be
bent down and the pin stem coming through the tubing would then be
bent at a 90 degree angle so that it would not come out of the tubing
and it would follow the horizontal line of the piece to the clasp.
Could you let me know if we are on the same page and clear up my
confusion on the part in quotes?

Sounds like you are thinking of one short end of the pin stem and one
long one (otherwise I don’t think you’d talk about a end close to the
tubing). In the double wire version, both pin stem ends are the same
length, and both get caught in the catch. Otherwise, yes,
perpendicular, right angle, the rest.

Makes you wish you could attach pictures to messages, doesn’t it?