Hi, I just wanted to take a moment to say thanks to Andy Kroungold
and Stuller, for helping us at Incline Jewelry, with a finishing
problem that we have tried to find a solution to for a very long
time. Actually, to be fair, I must also thank whoever originally
posted their technique for clean casting using wax to stop the
oxygen from getting to it. But, unfortunately, I can’t come up with
who it was right now. In the end it was a combination of that, and
the magnetic pin polisher that Andy recommended to us that did the
trick. By starving the oxygen from the flask immediately after
casting, and then putting the pieces into the magnetic tumbler, we
now get a really nice finish on these very intricately detailed
Hi, I just wanted to take a moment to say thanks to Andy Kroungold
It was Lee Epperson who came up with the technique of using wax to
stop the oxygen from getting to the casting.
Firescale Prevention During Vacuum Casting - An Inexpensive Method
It was Lee Epperson who came up with the technique of using wax to stop the oxygen from getting to the casting.
Thanks KPK, I always like to credit a brilliant idea to its rightful
owner, so Thank You Lee Epperson, and thanks again Andy Kroungold.
We had been making these pieces by bombing them with 20 yr. old
cyanide we found stored. By the time the cyanide ran out, they had
started selling pretty good. It was either discontinue a steady
seller, or find a new way of getting them super clean. So, you’ve
made the world a little bit greener out here in the high desert.
Sharing a Wonderful Experience
Dear Friends, So often we share our challenging experiences. Well,
today I would like to tell you about a wonderful experience that was
totally unexpected. Just after the first of the year, I ordered a
large piece of equipment from Stuller. I was simmering with
frustration that it was still on back order with no definite ship
date. I have read posts here from Andy “The Tool Guy” Kroungold and
decided to give him a call. He IMMEDIATELY took care of me going
above and beyond the call of duty. I am no “Big Dog” but he treated
me like one. I honestly believe he would do the same for anyone who
asked for his help. Thank you Andy, you have earned a loyal customer
and a high recommendation.
Since this is my first post I would also like to take the
opportunity to send my thanks to all the professors of Orchid who so
generously share their knowledge.
I’ll second the praise of Andy “The Tool Guy” Kroungold. He has
saved my bacon on more than one occasion…Teddy
Yeah, I’ve had similar experiences with Stuller. They really do
treat their customers like gold. But…I’ve purchased twice off their
website and both orders were extremely wrong. They made good on the
shipping charges one way and credited my account for the returns but
it will be a long time (if ever) before I buy anything on their
It is too sad that you had bad experiences dealing with Stuller on
line. I have been purchasing from them on line for over 20 years and
in all that time, had only one small problem that was quickly
resolved. I hope you can find what you want and good prices
elsewhere because I have been very happy with both coming from
Stuller. Guess we do what we have to do.
Don in SOFL.
Well I used to use Stuller more than anyone else but after a hiatus
due to illness. I returned to find my account closed and all my saved
favorites gone. So I took that to mean that I should find another
supplier. No problem. Just bad form to disconnect a customers account
even if it was a tiny one.
I love the Stuller web site. The only time I get the wrong order is
when I click the wrong thing. Usually the wrong color gold on a
finding. I use it almost exclusively, so much easier to add to an
order when I need something, and then before 4 o clock hit send. Get
it the next day, except when the computers were down, or due to
weather. Got to love that. Janine.
Should it be any other way? However, after about 25 years with
Stuller that kind of service is pretty much the norm. It’s what
makes them an industry leader.
I have been reading these reports recently, but I want to add a
concern I have regarding Stuller.
We are a small manufacturing company that also operates a small town
retail store, and on rare occasions suggest to our customers to allow
us to order a mounting from Stuller. This occurs when the new item
does not justify the expense of custom manufacture, and happened to
us last December. My concern arose when the mounting arrived with a
tag that read “Made In China”.
I sincerely have no specific argument with Chinese manufacturers,
however I have been manufacturing fine jewelry here in Michigan for
more than thirty years, and have watched as our manufacturing jobs,
both in the jewelry as well as the automotive industry, have steadily
moved overseas year after year. If I can’t economically manufacture a
piece for my customer, I at least felt good about supporting another
manufacture here in the USA. I guess I am saddened to learn that that
may not necessarily be the case.
I will do some research in the near future, and find another
manufacturer that is based here in the states to place those
occasional orders. I cannot be all things to all customers, but I can
(and will) control where my dollars are going to be spent.
Jon Michael Fuja
(with a General Motors vehicle waiting in the parking lot)
Whoa, Jon. I have never seen this before on items from Stuller
but…today I received a ring setting from a client that he had
gotten from Stuller. I am setting a stone for him. Lo and behold
there was a small tag on the ring that said, “Made in India”! Now the
ring was well made and up to what I would expect from Stuller
but…I agree with you that I would much prefer materials made in
the USA!!! Stuller, are you listening?
Can anyone say with any authority, what the price point difference
would be between a 14K white gold setting made in USA vs India (or
China)?? I can’t believe it would be worth the trouble but…then
I’ve been wrong before!!~
Cheers from Don in SOFL
Can anyone say with any authority, what the price point difference would be between a 14K white gold setting made in USA vs India (or China)?? I can't believe it would be worth the trouble but....then I've been wrong before!!
The only margin that large manufacturers have in their product
pricing is in the labor. When you have an employee who makes a
typical US wage vs one that makes a couple of dollars a day at the
most it is no contest. So the bean counters are going to go with
China or India every time. Stuller like all suppliers are faced with
the problem of competing with product coming in from these countries.
Their solution seems to be to have some of their product made in the
low cost countries rather than stress the made in USA aspect.
James Binnion Metal Arts
Praise for People that provide good service,
Buy quality stuff
Build quality products
Buy locally whenever you can.
It is much better to live in a community of prosperous people.
Money spent locally has a much greater chance of getting recycled in
your direction on the next pass through the till.
That is good advice wherever you happen to be located.
And some days, we all find that no matter which way we turn every
direction is uphill, so some patience is always appreciated.
The Mettle Works
I would much prefer materials made in the USA!!! Stuller, are you listening?
And I would much prefer getting the best quality products and the
lowest possible price.
And I would much prefer getting the best quality products and the lowest possible price.
And most Americans will opt for price over quality every time so
this is why we are inundated with cheap crap from overseas. It is not
that those countries cannot produce high quality goods, they can and
do so but the buyers (both wholesale and retail) are the ones who
choose price over quality so that is what they foreign manufacturers
James Binnion Metal Arts
And most Americans will opt for price over quality every time so this is why we are inundated with cheap crap from overseas.
Most Americans (and people who live within the borders of other
geographic area) also want the best they can afford.
It is not evil foreigners who have wrecked our economy with their
cheap goods. Were it not for cheap goods from China, etc. our cost
of living would be much, much higher.
And in a very few years we’ll see Chinese goods rise to the quality
(and price) of Japanese goods. I hope we will have solved our
homegrown economic problems before that happens.
It is not evil foreigners who have wrecked our economy with their cheap goods. Were it not for cheap goods from China, etc. our cost of living would be much, much higher.
No it has nothing to do with “evil foreigners” it has everything to
do with our cultural attitudes, where price is the main driving
aspect for the majority of the consumer base. Certainly there is a
segment of the population who focus on quality but the majority of
the consumers in the US focus on price. The people who import the
cheap goods understand this and that is why so much inexpensive
merchandise is brought into the US from Asia. If we demanded quality
from the Chinese, that is what we will get. There are many companies
who bring high quality goods in from China, for example Apple has
its products made in China. No matter what you may think of Apple
the quality of their products fit and finish and function is top of
the line and they are many other similar examples. But if one goes
to Asia and is only looking to import the least expensive goods then
that is what you will get. The reason the crappy goods are so
prevalent is that is what we as a country will routinely buy. For
example I constantly see people on this list praising Harbor Freight
tools, They have the worst quality tools I have ever seen, they
recently opened a store here in my town and I went in to look at it
and was appalled at the poor quality, we also have a Grizzly store
here the difference is amazing. While it may not be the same level
of quality of a high end Japanese or European tool company it is
worlds better than Harbor Freight. So both companies import from
China but there is a significant difference in quality. I have no
problem with China or other Asian nations where the low cost/quality
goods come from as they only sell us what we are willing to buy.
James Binnion Metal Arts
Certainly there is a segment of the population who focus on quality but the majority of the consumers in the US focus on price.
FWIW, ABC news had a “Made in America” segment for a week, last
month. The page for it is heRe:
They went into a home (for show, of course) and removed everything
that wasn’t made in America, which gave the owners bare walls and no
I thought it funny that the owners left tags on all their stuff, but
I guess they don’t take them off like I do. Then they filled it will
all American made products. A couple they couldn’t get at all - I
guess a coffee maker was one of those.
One of my Italian (in Italy) cousins made a comment that many might
find uncomfortable, but it’s a fact that he said it: “American
tourists will eat anything that’s put on a plate.” Speaking mostly
of the cruise ship set… All of this is really just
wringing-of-hands, oh, woe is us, because the world economy is what
it is at this point, and it will just keep chugging along with or
I think Jim in right. We live in a global economy, that is just a
reality. Try to buy a product that doesn’t come from China. We also
live in a disposable culture. Jim has a good point. If we don’t buy
the inferior products, they won’t sell, and won’t continue to be
produced. I also agree that just saying China produces inferior
products is not true. They manufacture very well made precision
measuring tools and machine parts, as well as the computer parts Jim
mentions. If the quality control is demanding, the product is made
well. That is the same all over the world! The power to change
consumer products is in our hands. Stop buying inferior products
that are cheap in cost, and be more discriminating. It will cost you
a bit more, but you’ll be helping to improve the general quality of
manufactured products, I’m thinking.