Day 6 Fixtures (Details)

Being a jewelry model maker for years, the majority of the pieces I work on are pieces that are going to be molded and reproduced many times over, so if there is a pit, mark, scratch, etc. that flaw will be visible in every piece that comes out of the mold. So extra time and patience is needed to make sure that the model is as flaw-free as possible, which will save time over and over from cleaning waxes or castings on reproduced pieces. When working on small pieces, sometimes it is difficult to hold onto the piece to get the scratches and marks out. So today, here is a quick tip to hold onto small pieces for cleanup.


One of the things I have always done is kept a large portion of my old used up burs and mandrels from wheels. I have a pile of them and am constantly grinding them into tools, shapes, burnishers, etc. In the future I will show some of the ways I make cutters, burnishers, grinders, and pit-beaters, but today I will show you a quick jewelry holding fixture.

If you have ever used mounted rubber cratex wheels, when you are done, instead of tossing it in the garbage, remove the last bits of rubber or abrasive cratex and you will find in most cases an end that is perfect for holding a small bit of Dop Wax.

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There are many types of materials that will hold a piece of jewelry, JETT-set, pine tar, loading wax, but I prefer Dop Wax. Dop Wax is used for holding stones for grinding and faceting, but I find it works best for holding small and large pieces. It melts about 160 degrees, and cleans away after a soaking in alcohol. (Faster in a container in an ultrasonic).  Just heat the piece up, not too much, (you will get the hang of it) and hold it in place with tweezers for a few seconds until it is cool enough to set firm. this also works good for setting stones in small pieces. Sometimes you might have to load the wax on a larger fixture. I have many different sizes of wooden dowels and fixtures with Dop Wax on them for different sizes of jewelry. I even use it on one of my fixtures on my GRS BENCHMATE .

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 1j Locket Earrings 08

Now go make it a Great Day!


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0 Responses to Day 6 Fixtures (Details)

  1. Stephanie June 6, 2014 at 2:13 pm #

    Doug, this is such a great idea, thank you! What do you use to heat up the Dop wax? I know with Jett set you only need to put it into boiling water, but what do you use for the Dop wax?

    • jewelrymonk June 6, 2014 at 2:39 pm #

      Thanks Stephanie, I just use light heat from my torch. Have a good day.

  2. Lisa Rose Aronow June 6, 2014 at 2:47 pm #

    Thanks so much for sharing this! I never knew exactly how to use Dop Wax. Often, by the end of the day my hands ache from holding the settings or findings that I’m working on. I can think of so many ways this will help lessen the fatigue.

    • jewelrymonk June 6, 2014 at 2:49 pm #

      Lisa, glad this helped you.