Melody Armstrong - Jewellery Level One
Use 18 gauge silver (minimum) = 1.0 mm thick
Measure: Paper around finger, fold excess so edge meets edge. Cut excess, butt up ends no gap or overlap and tape ends together. Try on paper band – should be snug, but able to remove over knuckles.
[Optional] Apply pattern to band: sand up to a 400 grit first and apply texture: roll printing, hammering, wire imprint, stamping. *Do this before filing.
Square up silver band, use best end. FILE the band using large blue handle flat file.
File the best end. Butt up band against bench pin, perpendicular to floor, [vertically at 90° to floor], with best end at top. Using a wide flat file, file the good top end at a right angle. Use a light touch and controlled movement keeping file level and parallel with bench top, file slowly from front to back. File only in one direction, away from yourself. Aim: a solid single plane across the top end. Keep an eye on the reflection of the edge. Use jewellers’ square to check the right angle. Check that the reflection is even all the way across the filed end. File more if needed.
Open up the paper ring. Use calipers to measure paper band, and gently tighten calipers. Butt up calipers on filed end of silver band, and scribe line across the back side of band to mark the other end of the band where it will be cut.
Place band on top of bench pin, near the top of “inverted V” for support. Saw band slowly and gently on the scribed line.
File this end of band and true up with the square. (See step 4.)
If the surface is hammered, roll printed, wire imprinted or stamped, you will need to anneal the band to soften before proceeding. (See note on Annealing at end of these instructions.
Hold band alongside ring mandrel and, using fingers/hands, form a gentle U shape. Using half-round pliers, hold band near edge of one end parallel to edge, with flat part of plier on outside of band and round part of plier on inside of band. Bend the end a bit. Alternate sides, bending. Bring two ends to butt together. Band will be flat across the area where ends butt together.
Close to where ends butt together, hold one end with pliers and place one end just over the other end and push together. Lift out under-end so ends snap together. Repeat with other end. Check to see that no light comes through the joint. Adjust as needed, using pliers.
Using snap-on disc at 90° to band, smooth the best end of the seam (where 2 ends of band conjoin). To make a flush spot for soldering.
Soldering - Turn on ventilation system. Clean off solder brick. - For plain ring, use MED solder. If adding other soldered on elements to the ring, start with HARD solder for the seam, then use MED, then EASY for subsequent soldering. - Cut tiny square of solder, and place on solder brick. - Stir flux well. Brush flux over entire ring (all surfaces). - Place flush side of seam on top of solder.
Solder: turn on gas, then Oxygen. Heat entire ring, then the seam area at the end making sure the solder flows all the way to the top of the seam. - Turn off oxygen first, then gas. Then Quench the ring in water. Leave the steel tweezers at the solder station.
Pickling: put ring in pickle pot for 5 minutes. Remove using copper tongs, then dip in baking soda solution, and rinse with water. Dry off.
Making the ring round. Using a rawhide mallet, hammer the ring on the ring mandrel, gentle at first. As it gets rounder, rotate the mandrel and hammer harder until all edges of the ring are in contact with the mandrel. As you do this alternate the direction the ring goes on the mandrel repeatedly.
Finishing Slide edges of ring back and forth on top of flat 150 grit sandpaper stick, to smooth the edges and and make them flush. Using half-round new needle file, at a 45degree angle to the edge, file the sharp inner edges of ring to make it rounded, not too much, should only take a few seconds each side.
Using 280 grit sandpaper mandrel (on flex shaft machine) in an up-down motion, smooth inner surface of the ring and remove excess solder from the interior.
Use snap-on disc (on flex shaft) to round off the outside edges of ring.
Polishing. For a smooth surface ring that is not textured or printed: use 320 and 400 grit sandpaper to sand the entire outside surface and outside edges. This will eliminate the seam. If you want to do a high polish, sand with 600 and then 1000 grit. Then use greystar on the buffing machine, is is VERY important to remove all greystar compound before doing the super high polish with the rouge compound.
DO NOT CONTAMINATE THE ROUGE WHEEL WITH THE GREYSTAR COMPOUND.
Remove both compounds with the ultra sonic cleaner, be sure to turn on the ultrasonic cleaner 30 minutes before hand and set to 60 degrees. When finished with the ultrasonic cleaner please turn off.
For a hammered ring: use a small worn-down rubber wheel (on flex shaft) to imitate hammering along the seam, or the edge of a 400 grit sandpaper stick.
[Optional] Apply patina if desired to textured rings. First brass brush with detergent and rinse under hot water then immerse in fresh, hot liver of sulfur. Rinse.
On a textured Ring. Burnish if desired the outer surface of band using small, circular motions with the burnishing tool. This will burnish and highlight the raised portions. Then burnish outer edges of ring. Or sand off the high spots with a fine sandpaper stick.
To soften metal that has been textured before bending into a u-shape on the ring mandrel, anneal the metal: - Lay the silver on top of soldering block. - Using the torch with light turned off, heat the entire metal surface until metal turns grey and you see a hint of a dull red glow appearing on the metal. - Turn off flame. Using tweezers, quench metal in water. - Pickle the metal piece (see step 11 above).
HIGH POLISH (for smooth rings)
Sand up to 1000 grit: start with [150 maybe, if you have deep scratches to remove]- 280-320-400-600-1000 Turn on ultrasonic cleaner to 60° 30 minutes prior. Use buffing machine: - Use face shield. Turn on ventilation, light, buffing wheel. - Add GREYSTAR compound to the buff on right side. - Hold metal with fingertips with both hands. - Hold metal at a 45 degree angle to the buffing wheel.
is is VERY important to remove all greystar compound before doing the super high polish with the rouge compound.
DO NOT CONTAMINATE THE ROUGE WHEEL WITH THE GREYSTAR COMPOUND.
- Clean using ultrasonic cleaner, [or with hot water, detergent, toothbrush] – to remove compound, make sure it is all off of edges and pierced out areas. 5-10 minutes.
- Then proceed with ROUGE Buff using rouge compound on the left buffing wheel for a super higher polish.
-repeat cleaning as above.