Sizing a spinning band

I’ve been asked to size a 9k yellow and white spinning band. I really
don’t want to cut it; I’d rather stretch it, but the customer for
some reason, still wants the ring to spin. Suggestions appreciated.

(Here’s a short video if my description above is unclear)

Hi Pat, Stretch the ring up an extra 1/2 to 3/4 of size and then
shrink the edges back down to the proper size.

Have fun,
Tom Arnold

To do this right each ring needs to be sized separately. Also the
price should be close to sizing the rings individually. I charge
$35.00 for sizing a narrow ring and more for the wide ring. So for a
ring with 3 spinners the charge should be at least $125.00 giving a
little discount off regular prices. I had to take one of mine up 1/2
size and was able to put a silver liner between the spinners and the
main band. It stretched up as one piece so the spinners still spun
after the silver liner was removed. I would not do this with a 9K
ring of someone else’s, actually I would not even attempt to size it
at all.

Bill Wismar

Well, Paf, unless somebody else has some miraculous solution, I only
see three answers. First is to size the ring so it no longer spins -
just stretch it up. You say that’s not an option, so there’s that.
Second is my choice: refuse the job. Actually there would be a
fourth in some cases. That’s to grind out the inside to make it
larger, but I can see in the video that the ring is too thin for
that. The only other solution I see is to cut the rings, size the
inner (spinning) band to a size (for you to figure out, as you don’t
say the sizes to begin with), size the outer ring to a smaller size,
assemble them and stretch the whole thing up to size so the inner
ring still spins. People who make those have that all figured out
from experience, but I don’t, which is why I’d just refuse it. Pretty
much of a miniature nightmare, getting all that just right. Certainly
it will be a learning experience if you do the job. I’d probably
charge like $150, which would be wholesale, and that would put them
off anyway, most likely.

Gorgeous ring - I love spinning rings! How much bigger must the ring
go? Did I see correctly that the spinning part is slightly domed? I
usually have to cut and rebuild the spinning rings that I made (much
simpler design tho). I’ve tried whacking and stretching the ring and
it has marred the metal under the spinner (different style of band).
And, for a ring with a similar type of spinner, tapping caused the
band to become misshapen (and it stopped spinning).


Stretch the ring up an extra 1/2 to 3/4 of size and then shrink the
edges back down to the proper size. 

Sometimes that works, but all too often the center of the inner
band, in which the spinning section rests, is very thin, and buckles
when you do any significant shrinking, so your end shrinking doesn’t
give a good surface for the spinner to ride in. That can be a
problem. Also, shrinking that thin a band means only the edges
shrink, causing the previously flat interior surface to become
domed/hollow, with the outer surface following that shape. That can
sometimes allow the spinning section to simply slide off, no longer
adequately trapped.

If the ring has no existing solder seams (check carefully), so that
it seems like it will stretch the required amount without cracking,
then here’s how I’d do it. First, very carefully measure the existing
ring size. Be exact. Now shrink the ring slightly, from one side
only. The ring in your video is flat enough that the shrinking die
should only contact the edge of the inner band, not the spinning
section. Choose the shrinking die you use to make sure of this.
Shrinking the inner band on one edge should allow you to slide the
spinner off without cutting. Now measure the ring size of the
spinner. Again, be exact, noting the exact difference in size between
the two. Stretch the spinner sectioh up, seperately, until it’s the
same amount larger than your desired end size, as was the original
difference in size. Annealing it first is a good idea. If find it
sometimes useful to go slightly more, and then lightly shrink back
down to the size, since the compression of the shrinking die seems to
lock in an exact round shape better than stretching does. Clean up,
polish as needed, etc, being sure there are no burs on the inner edge
of the spinner section. Now anneal the inner portion. Due to your
shrinking of the edge to seperate the two, it is likely more in need
of annealing. Now you can stretch the inner ring up to the desired
size, while holding the spinner in position over the center of the
inner ring. If you’ve done this right, the spinner should still be
loose and movable as you reach the desired end size. As with the
outer band, if there is any tendancy for the inner ring to not be
totally round, tweaking the edges slightly with shrinking dies, not
enough to really make anything smaller, just enough to true up the
shape, should help. Be careful not to overwork the metal with too
much up/down/up tweaking, or eventually you’ll tear somethng…

Making these smaller is somewhat similar. Again, measure the initial
size, shrink enough to seperate the rings. measure the difference,
and shrink the inner spinner to the needed size plus that difference.
Then size the inner ring smaller. Given the thin narrow center cross
section, you often will find it necessary to cut and solder this
part, not merely shrinking it, to avoid that doming effect. But if
it’s only going down a little, you may be able to shrink it. Again,
now shrink one edge enough to slip the spinner on, and stretch it
back up. This can be tricky, given the seam you’ve now got in the
ring, so be careful. At any sign of cracking, stop of fix before
stretching any more, since a slight hairling crack is a lot easier to
fix without freezing the two bands together than is a wider more
serious crack.

If you’re initial examination of the rings found solder joints, then
the whole thing becomes more complicated, as then you have to do it
mostly with conventional sizing, where getting both rings very round
so they not only lock together but still move, can be tricky. If
that’s the case, charge a lot more…


Gorgeous ring - I love spinning rings! How much bigger must the
ring go? 

It has to go from a 6 to a 10.5

Did I see correctly that the spinning part is slightly domed? 

There’s a half-round band inside a channel.

My machine stretches and reduces. Perhaps you could stretch the whole
ring, then reduce the inner ring. It looks like there is enough of
the inner ring to do this. It would be a bit of a gamble so maybe not
a good experiment to perform on a customer’s item. ;0)


There's a half-round band inside a channel. 

Whoa, Paf. I sent another post last night with ideas on sizing these
things. Ignore them. It involves shrinking and stretching, without
cutting. That works with size changes up to perhaps a size or a bit
more, depending on the metal. But 4.5 sizes? That’s a lot to stretch
even a single seamless solid band without trouble. Even if you can
stretch a ring that much without it actually breaking, at that amount
of stretching, you’ll get a lot of deformation and distortion of the
finish. For that amount, if you want a good job, you pretty much
have to cut the rings, size them by adding the appropriate amount of
material, and reassembling them. You might even consider actually
remaking the rings in their entirety, perhaps using the customer’s
metal in the new ones. That would allow you to avoid double seams,
possible uneven stresses giving you out of round shapes, etc. To do
that, you’d fabricate the two new bands to the proper size and
reassemble by stretching the inner band up into the outer one, as I
described in my other post. Then you only need to make an inner band
with a seam capable of withstanding the stretching involved. This may
sound like a whole lot more work, and perhaps it is, but it’s much
more assured of getting a good result. The inner ring on a spinner,
especially, is usually quite thin in the channel under the spinner,
and sizing that cleanly, while getting it perfectly round at the end,
isn’t a slam dunk.

If you do decide to try and stretch them anyway, or at least, if
you’re going to stretch the outer band, don’t just stretch it on a
stretcher. Use those ring roller type machines that roll the band
larger. Combined with stretching, this can alleviate the distortion
in finish from stretching alone. Roll/stretch it a bit too big (1/4
size over is enough) then use the stretcher’s shrinking dies, after
annealing, to reshape the ring. That’s much more effective at
getting a plain band truely round and even than is, say, a mallet on
a mandrel. For these rings to work (spin), that outer band must be
truely round. Any oval to it and it will either jam up, or be prone
to slipping off. The inner band can be a little (very little) bit out
of round, and if the outer one still spins, then it will continue to
do so. But in those cases, again, if the inner one is too far out of
round, the two can seperate.

If you don’t think you can stretch the inner band up into the outer
band to assemble (if you think the seams will crack, or if you’ve
tried, and they do), then you can get it to the right size and shape
without the outer band. Get it round, to size, annealed, but without
soldering shut the final seam. Then seperate the two sides of the cut
“vertically”, and squeeze the ring so one side ducks under the other.
Now you’re creating just a little section of a spiral, and by doing
this, you should be able to fit it into the outer ring. Then onto a
mandrel and slide it up to snap the seam back into it’s proper
position. If you’re accurate with the fit of the seam before all
this, you should be able to solder the seam without freezing the two
rings together by putting a tweezer on the two at the opposite side
of the rings, so the gap between the two is maximized at the seam.

If you’ve not done these before, don’t be surprised if the job takes
you a couple hours or more (once you’re used to them, even then it’s
a half hour, and I’m figuring that with the availability of my laser
welder…). more if the job goes south on ya. Price it accordingly.


It has to go from a 6 to a 10.5 

And an addendum to my longer posts on this subject. I’d have sent
this offlist if the sender’s email were valid…

“Paf”, if you want help with this job, contact me offlist in email.


It has to go from a 6 to a 10.5 

I see snapping metal in your future.

I have a stupid question what is spinning band, could someone send
me a picture please thank you Orchid, I got lot of useful info from

There's a half-round band inside a channel. 

I fail to see what the big problem is.

Look for seams.

Slice apart and size the spinner by measure and finish Size the
mother band, match the inner profile,slice and assemble with spinner
Solder mother band with your choice of dirt, white out, yellow
ochre, or rouge to avoid problems. Finish the mother band. Charge for
3 sizings + a bit more for having to futz around. No rocket science
and nothing too scary.

Demand Designs
Analog/Digital Modelling & Goldsmithing

Hi Anna! A spinning band ring is exactly as it sounds, though it has
my variations as well as names. Basic idea is that a portion of the
ring = is moveable. Try a search on the 'net for Worry ring,
meditation ring, spinner, fiddle ring and you’ll see lots of
different ring styles! I weara worry ring on my thumb and love it
(wasn’t a thumb ring kinda gal before).


Wow, that’s a huge size change. I agree with Jeff D - I would
imagine that cutting the two bands and resizing each would be the
best way. I’ve made a more rustic version of that ring, in all
Argentium silver, and had to use white out under the spinning band to
prevent it from fusing down/ solder running. Of course, I wasn’t
trying to resize it, so I built it by soldering one rail to the main
band first, then slipping the spinning band (already soldered) on and
then soldering the second rail on to complete. I made mine with a
flat, spinning band and the client wanted it flush to the rails. I
would worry that in stretching, it might change the heights of the
components, but with that nice half dome spinner band, that
shouldn’t be a concern?


About this stretching of the spinning ring 4 1/2 sizes up. That is a
lot. It may well make the ring too thin. It might be a good idea to
size the base ring 1/2 size too small by adding a piece. Size
thecenter bend to just fit over the wider band and then stretch up
the whole thing to the proper size wth the center in place.

Have fun.
Tom Arnold

Look for seams. Slice apart... 

You missed the part about not wanting to cut the rings.

Look for seams. Slice apart…

You missed the part about not wanting to cut the rings. 
  1. Uri Geller?
  2. Suggest wearing on a string around the neck.
  3. Send back to the company and get the right size.
  4. Shrink customers finger.
  5. Cut and weld.
  6. Come up with a solution those of us who have been doing this for
    30 or 40 years have not come up with.

Richard Hart G.G.
Denver, Co.

You missed the part about not wanting to cut the rings. 

No way to stretch 4.5 sizes unless you are really really good and
very lucky.


No way to stretch 4.5 sizes unless you are really really good
and very lucky. 

Jeff should have stopped here: No way to stretch 4.5 sizes

Your job is to return the ring in the same state, but larger.

Stretching any ring that much will change it’s state in a
fundamental way.

In a more general conversation Don’t take the first part as ego,
as there’s a point beyond that. I’m the local problem solver. People
bring me the jobs that are too difficult for them to do. They bring
me other people’s mistakes to fix (I charge double for that and don’t
think I’m kidding). The difficult takes awhile, the impossible we
take to John. That’s a very satisfying place to be - getting
challenging jobs, jobs you may not even want but are capable of.
Tricky, complex, nearly impossible stuff. But that’s entirely
different from tinkering around with other people’s gadgets and
gizmos, which is just a glorious waste of time, almost always.
Swinger rings, spinner rings, interchangeable stones that don’t
interchange like they should, catches that don’t work and never did.
Strange designs, odd designs, tiny little bearings that came from
who-knows-where, rings that are unsizeable or you won’'t get paid if
you do it anyway. I saw a spinner ring that was poorly made - you
could almost knock the spinner out with your thumb, it was so loose.
But the sample is close-tolerance, and somebody figured out just what
sizes to start with so the whole thing goes together smooth, tight
and clean. Quickly. Thing is, they didn’t tell me about it, and I
don’t want to know anyway . Don’t get me wrong - there are gadget
pieces that sell extremely well. People LIKE gadgets. Just don’t
bring them to me to fix, size or redesign like they should have been
designed to begin with, because I already dodged those bullets
before. It’s a fine case of "Just Say NO