Project Ideas for High School

Hi Folks:

I’m a high school metal teacher in northern BC Canada, that is
slowly adding a jewelry making component to his program. At present
we are doing bracelets out of copper and brass using simple hammer
techniques to texture the metal. Also we are doing some etching
using circuit board etchant, as well as band rings. I have started
to play with enameling, but still in the process of getting all the
proper equipment together (glue, hot plates etc). And I’ve good
success with twisted wire for rings and bracelets as well as chain
making. We also use the machine lathe to make rings from aluminum
and steel which we mount beads for stones by crazy glueing. We’re
experimenting with chasing and rabbis using shop built tools and
lead as a chasing surface.

I’m hoping to get ideas for basic projects that use only basic
tools. I’m thinking of trying gem stones and cabochons and have
started to experiment with making our own bezel cups. Does anyone
have ideas for gem settings? We have tried some patinas which the
kids like, is there anyway of protecting these patinas other then
using a spray on clear coat?

At present I have ordered some new material for projects ideas, low
dome silver wire and paranoid bezel cups. I was thinking we could
make a simple silver ring with setting that would be a good
soldering exercise and (hopefully) the kids would end up with a nice
result. I’m also getting some copper foil (36 guage) for rabbis
work. Has anyone tried using copper foil for keum-boo?

I’ve read many articles here and they have been a big help, but many
don’t really apply to my situation. So I hope you can help and if
possible pictures showing procedures really add to the description
of processes. Thanks.

Best regards,
Chris Gravenor

Chris, Pick up a current copy of Art Jewelry and all the back
issues. It is full of projects for your students. Also get in touch
with Nanz Aalund she is one of the editors and writers.