Soldering is a skill that all bench jewelers master at an early stage in their career. Although this process soon becomes second nature, sometimes itʼs good to review the basic principles involved to remind ourselves why we do certain things. Remember, an ideal soldered joint must be strong, but at the same time invisible.
Introduction With the Baby Boomers reaching their retirement years, the problems associated with ring fit and finger joint swelling will become a major issue for jewelers. This paper addresses the medical causes of swollen finger joints due to rheumatoid and osteoarthritis and solutions for the jeweler.
Knowing how to professionally install Superfit shanks for enlarged finger joints demonstrates another aspect of quality in your shop.
Laser welding improves overall shop proficiency while increasing quality for repair, reconstruction and jewelry manufacturing.
Many rings incorporate yellow and white gold elements to produce a rich contrast of warm and cool colors. But when both colors are incorporated into the same shank, the bench jeweler who sizes the ring faces a challenge. To size up a two-tone ring, the jeweler must:
Sitting at your bench one day, you reach for the next repair envelope, examine the contents and read the instructions. The envelope says, Name: Mrs. JB Tipton. Article: Lady’s yellow ring marked “14k” w/3 clear brilliants, approx. 3.2mm. Tips on all prongs are worn. Size 5 1/2. Instructions: Retip all with solder.”
Beginner-to-Intermediate project. This ring was always tight on Mrs. Ghirardelli’s finger. But as she was getting ready for a party the other evening, she could barely squeeze it over her knuckle. And once it was on her finger, she noticed that the ring pinched her skin like a tight corset.
Before they invented garbage disposals, we jewelers had it easy. But since the ’50s, when the industrial revolution invaded the kitchen sink, we have been fighting back in the war against home convenience devices that eat jewelry and flatware.
The tools needed for this job are a hammer, a flat-headed punch or a hammer hand piece for your flex-shaft, a small round burr, and some platinum wire: You will also need either; dog-leg style burnisher or a tungsten burnisher made from a burr, as well as a wire curter and a pair of needle-nose…
Editor’s Note: Working with platinum is unlike working with any other metal: It polishes differently, requires greater heat to work with, and is easily contaminated.