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Setting square bezel punched collets


#1

Howdy,

Recently purchased a square bezel punch and block. Was wondering if
anyone would like to chime in with any experience on how they go
about setting a square stone in the fabricated square collet.

Currently, I make the collet so that it’s edges rise just above the
girdle of the stone so that I will have enough metal to form a bezel
around the stone. To form the bezel, I file away the outside walls
following the slope of the collet. My problem is that once I’ve filed
away enough material to make the top edge thin enough to rub over the
stone, I feel that I am weakening the bezel/collet construction
altogether. What would you suggest?

I plan on make many rings with this type of setting.

Thanks, Chris


#2

The stones I use are faceted princess cut stones for this type of
setting.

Lastly, I understand there may be some different definitions on the
difference between collet and bezel. When I mentioned collet, I mean
to say the fabricated square setting formed by the square bezel
block and punch. Perhaps bezel and collet are synonymous in this
instance. I picked up the term colletas used in Anastasia Young’s
book “The Guide To Gemstone Settings: Styles and Techniques.”

At any rate, was just looking for the proper method on how to set
square stones in this square setting. Grateful for any insight on
this.

Best,
Chris


#3

Chris, while I do not use the technique or the square collets as you
describe, you might find the videos “The Art of Setting Princess
Cuts” and “Bezel and Flush Setting” by Blaine Lewis quite helpful. He
goes into great detail. Between the two videos he covers pretty much
everything you will need to set the Princess Cuts into square bezels.

Even after setting for over 30 years I found his videos extremely
helpful, and I still go back to them now and again to review, when
facing a particularly difficult setting job.

Jim Newton


#4

one problem with punched collets is that to use them one has to saw
them on an edge to make easy modifications- so while you may be
saving time from laying out and scoring lines in the strip, etc. you
still have to score the amount of metal that you will use to rub over
the stone. at that point you can thin it evenly yet not remove too
much material on any face, or otherwise end up with an uneven "top"
that will bend over the stone’s girdle as each stone in a parcel will
be different when using hand cut stones. Machine cut stones allow you
to set up a template using an angle finder that will allow you to
modify and make the 4 bends faster than if you were to use a sawn
strip that you would fold together and solder both closing and
attaching to the shank (or other workpiece) in one operation provided
you are using paillions of solder (roll them thinner if bought
clipped) and placing them between the shank and the collet and
binding or otherwise fixturing so that you may do a few at a go. Also
remember to place one paillion at the top of the closing join as it’s
harder to turn the ring upside down to make the solder flow into the
closing join that simply placing a piece of solder on the well fluxed
top of the closing join and when heated the whole should not only
securely join the shank but close the collet requiring only some
adjustments with the burnisher to hold the stone in place securely
and tighten up the appearance without having to remove material once
the stone is in place. It is important though, to finish both the
ring shank and the collet to the degree of polish or texture you want
before soldering the pieces together so you aren’t tempted to get out
a bur and remove more of the metal that you would rub over the stone
in finishing it once the stone is in place. Some stones can be
soldered in place too- in which case finishing the collet and shank
is even more time saving as you will need only protect the stone with
some wet wadded newsprint or similar and apply heat, then a final
pickle, neutralise, rinse and any further final finishing and you’re
done. hope this is clear to you. if not i would be happy to clarify
anything you don’t understand. rer