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Tool Envy

Greetings, all. I’m getting started goldsmithing using Alan Revere’s
book and video series. In the third volume, Mr. Revere has a couple
of tools I’m unable to find in any of the supply houses I’ve checked,
including Gesswein, Rio Grande, and others. The first tool is a
nifty little oval mandrel that he uses to form a bezel to 25x18
dimensions. The oval mandrels I’ve seen for sale in catalogs are
either bezel mandrels (too small) or bracelet mandrels (too large).
Next, he reaches under his desk and whips out a gigantic crossing
file, apparently wider than 25 mm. Man, am I jealous! The only
crossing files I’ve seen by Friedrich Dick and Grobet are nowhere
near this wide, and getting a uniform curve in the bale is proving
difficult with a lesser tool.

Can anyone clue me in as to the source of these things? I’m afraid I
don’t own my own machine shop.

Thanks in advance.

P.S.: Apologies to Sigmund Freud.

Chris, Please Try Indian Jewelers Supply for the oval mandrel. I
believe that they used to carry them. They are in Gallup, NM.


I found one at a jewelry suplyer in florida tool free 1 800 323 6091
1180 Solana avenue Winterpark florida 32789 and they had much more
anusual one Myriam from Canada

One solution to the mandrel problem, although not a perfect one,
would be a wooden mandrel. You could carve, file and sand your own
out of, say, oak, but the proper hammer or other tool handle should
also work. I have a hammer in my hand with a handle which is smaller
than 18x25 at the throat.


Hi all,

The BEST source for files I have ever found is Providence File
Company. Not only do they have every possible file shape, size, and
number, their prices are excellent. I learned about them through the
Society of American Silversmiths [there is a tasty member discount]
and live close enough that I could go down and have a look. Wowee! If
you love files, this is wonderland. You will have no trouble at all
finding a crossing file of the width you describe. They also have a
huge range of file handles which solved my poke-in-the-palm problems.
They are set up more for mail order than retail, and keep odd hours
so if you want to visit call first. To reach them:

Providence File Company
16B Dewey Avenue
Warwick, RI 02886

800.352.9506 or 401.732.8430
fax: 401.732.8432

By the way, the web site for the Society of American Silversmiths is
full of excellent technical book reviews, and this
month’s featured Artisan member is Valentin Yotkov, an Orchidian. You
can visit it at

Anne Hollerbach