Day 12 Pearl Posts (Metalsmith)

Step8

If you make jewelry long enough, you will eventually make a piece of jewelry with a pearl or a post that will hold a glued stone to it. Here is a quick way to make sure the pearl or the stone you set will be more secure.

If you have a Rolling Mill with a grove for rolling square stock, you are ahead of the game, just roll a piece of silver down to approx  0.7mm or so. If you don’t have a mill with those rollers with it, well here is another way to go about it.

Find a piece of sheet silver approx 0.7mm thick and file the straightest edge flat and then scribe a line the same width as the thickness.

Step1 Step2 Step3

Now it is time to work on and perfect your sawing skills. Use your Jewelers Saw to cut along the side the line that you scribed. Take your time and cut right on the outside of the line. The straighter the cut, the less filing you will have to do. I use a Saw Blade 3/0 to cut this. Now file the edge that you just cut off and make the piece as wide as it is thick. 0.7mm in this instance.

Step4 Step5

Next it is time to anneal the small piece you just made. This piece is very small, so be careful not to overheat it in the process. Use a “bushy” flame and turn off your bench lamp. Watch the color of the silver as you  heat it, you want to aim for a dull pink color in the silver. Try to maintain this color for between 15 and 30 seconds, waving the flame (not too close) back and forth over the piece. I use a Smith Mini Torch for soldering and for annealing. Do not get it red hot!  If you do, cool your piece and start over.

Step6

Use 2 pair of pliers or a small vise and 1 pair of pliers. I prefer to use Smooth Jawed Parallel Pliers, so the silver is not marred. These are same pliers I use to hold the silver while I cut it with my saw. Now twist the silver.

Step7 Step8

Step9

Next, just trim off enough to hold the pearl or stone and solder into place. I use a cup bur to finish off the end of the post, and drill a small divot, a little larger than the post, in the piece to be soldered to. The divot will give the post more contact area for the solder to attach the post to, and make a stronger solder joint. The twisted action of the post will bond the glue or epoxy to the stone much better.

Now, go make something beautiful and have a great day!

Doug

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5 Responses to Day 12 Pearl Posts (Metalsmith)

  1. Babette Cox September 9, 2015 at 10:34 am #

    Doug – Mr. Jewelry Monk:

    You posts inspire me. There is so much to learn and getting this spoon fed to me for FREE is absolutely priceless. I can not thank you enough. Well, maybe I can. I am a lampworker … and I make my glass beads into jewelry and sell in 2 gallereries and at craft fairs.

    Anyway, I’ll be glad to send you some (one) or whatever. Just to say thank you. Thing is, my website is woefully out of date…. my fault I know. But anyway ……. THANK YOU ……. for all you do for us ‘out here’.

    Babette in Dallas, Texas

    • Doug Napier September 9, 2015 at 10:45 am #

      Babette, thank you for the kind comments and offer, that means so much. Just pay it forward… Find someone else who is hungry to learn dump into them.
      Doug

  2. Beverly Burns September 17, 2015 at 2:38 pm #

    Thank-you for your generous spirit and for reminding us to pay it forward.

    • Doug Napier September 17, 2015 at 5:31 pm #

      Thank you Beverly and thanks for visiting the JewelryMonk website. I hope to continue to create content and pass it along.
      Doug

    • Doug Napier September 29, 2015 at 12:27 pm #

      You bet Beverly.