Small studio in my apartment

I did my casting outside when I wasn’t able to because I lived in a place that made casting molten metal a dangerous situation!
Tufa casting I learned from my father and the technique makes very unique jewelry. One of a kind.
Right now I’m faced with the Same problem and my solution is: I am going to use a trailer as a portable shop that I can weld and pour molten metal without endangering the place I live. I would send pictures but I’m just starting this journey. I’m not going to cast and create on a big scale. Custom Creations.
Welding and power supply is a problem I’ll have to address because welders don’t play nice with generators.
Just a few of my ideas and plans.
So much of what we do begins this way.

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Your workspace looks a lot like mine (but way more neat); I’m an amateur of five or so years and I see that you may have carpeting, as I do. For this reason I decided that casting is out of the question, since a drop of molten metal would ignite the synthetic material of the carpet (though it is ugly…). I have a Smith little torch with acetylene/air and am always unsure about any city regulations, so a bit nervy when soldering. I have a fiberglass fire blanket and and extinguisher at arm’s length. I find it a little reassuring that you feel comfortable with your setup in similar circumstances. I know I’m rambling… glad that you’re getting back into the craft!

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very nice!.. everything that you need in a small space… great job! congrants!

PS: I got my drill press for cheap… it was a stand with a lock-in for an electric hand drill. It had a stage with it… it’s not as sturdy as a dedicated drill press, but was accurate enough to drill straight holes into almost any material, including steel, using a good quality hand drill with good bits. I don’t know if these kinds of lock-in devices are still made…

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Question - are you soldering or intend to do so in this space?

Looks great.

Thank you.

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There is a torch, propane cylinder and O2 concentrator in one of the pictures.

My thanks to everyone for their kind words. @ Karen: I do intend to solder. I’ll be using a Meco Midget torch running oxy/propane with an oxygen concentrator. Initially I had intended to solder on my workbench, but I think it would be better to use the small table to the left where the annealing pan is.

Hi Rob:

You are correct. I finally settled on this setup. So far I’ve only used it for annealing steel, but I get to try it for real today as my first silver order arrives shortly.



I use the same setup except that I run both a Meco and a Little Torch off Y connectors from each gas source. Your shop looks nice, but it is too clean. Get busy and mess it up. Good luck…Rob


Rob, what do you use the Little Torch for? I actually have one that I tried out first but it wasn’t hot enough. I would guess that you use it as an additional heat source for larger, heavier pieces, perhaps for overlay.

I didn’t use it for much until I started using Paige tips on both torches. I use the Little Torch now more than the Meco unless I am making heavy bracelets. I also have an EZ Torch that I use for annealing and a Blazer GT 8000 butane torch that I use as a secondary source of heat when casting ingots to keep the mold hot. I am experimenting with the Blazer to see if it could be a substitute torch on smaller work as our club would like to do some metal training. If you don’t know about them, look into Paige tips. Good luck…Rob

I got three Paige tips along with the Meco torch. I also realized that I misspoke in my last post, as I actually have an EZ Torch not a Little Torch. It’s what I get for typing in the middle of the night.

I have never used the EZ Torch for anything other than annealing. There are people who swear by them for filigree. I need to figure out if I can make the Blazer work for soldering smaller work as our club would like to use them to teach intro jewelry making courses in a rented space. Paige tips were a game changer for me. I had moved from acetylene and O2, both from regulated cylinders and stock tips, first to propane and O2 from regulated cylinders to propane from a 1 lb. cylinder and O2 from a concentrator. At the same time I also discovered Paige tips. They have served me well ever since. This transition may have happened over a 15 year period of time. In the end, we do what works or just keep looking. There are too many variables to say that one solution works for everyone…Rob

Hi Rob,
the smalker blazer works for small work…I woulc venture to say that Andrew Berry uses the small size for 80-90% of his projects…


Man oh man I really wish that I would have invested in a Jeweler’s desk. I made mine myself and while it’s functioning it just doesn’t have some of the stuff that I need. Love your setup

Hi Kimberly:

Thanks. When I was making jewelry years ago, I used a workbench I made myself. It worked, but it could have been better. As to my present workbench, had my wife not insisted that I get it, I would not have gotten such a nice one. I love it.


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