The company that makes the balls for granulation is : SPM, 1 Labriola
Ct., Armonk,NY( 914-273-5500) Their balls are in the 1mm range for
the largest, and are 22kt gold. They might be able to do custom balls
if the order is large enough.
If you need to make your own, I have a granulation ball calculator
on my web site you can download. Go to http://www.rocksmyth.com ,
select Granulation Links, then select Granulation Spreadsheet. Just
put in the diameter of the wire you will use, and adjust the length
for the size ball you need. Cut the wire, heat it till it melts on
a charcoal block, and it will ball up. Balls over about 2mm will start
to have a flat spot on the bottom. The trick to making them perfectly
round is to take a 3mm burr and cut a pocket in a charcoal block,
going half the depth of the ball, or 1.5mm. Place one end of the cut
wire over the pocket, and put the torch to the other end. It will
start to ball up and roll towards the pocket. As it gets to the end
of the wire, it will plop into the pocket, the bottom will be round.
For a 4mm ball , use a 4 mm burr and cut to 2 mm depth, etc..
This will tend to eat up your charcoal block after a while and I
have been trying to re-invent the wheel. Trying to find something
that will work as well as a charcoal block and not disintegrate. I
have tried all the soldering pads on the market (balls stick to
them), soapstone (takes too long to get hot), Pyrex (shattered but
still might try it on the kiln top), agate(shattered), different
fired and unfired bricks (sticks to metal), and am working on
compressing ashes from the BBQ pit into a block..
To carry this one step father, you can use this technique to make
headpins for beading or earrings. Determine the amount of wire you
need for the ball. Lets say we need 20 gauge wire of diameter .82 mm,
and a length of 27mm to make a 3mm ball. Cut a wire length of about 3
inches and measure 27 mm from the end. Cut a 3mm pocket in a charcoal
block, and center the mark at 27 mm over the pocket. Start heating
the short end of the wire, and when you get to the 27 mm mark, it
will plop in the pocket, and you will have a 2.5 inch wire with a 3mm
ball centered on the end. For the cost of the wire and no solder.
Love and God Bless