Make your own Jewelry Tools

I am not the type of person to make my own tools.
My first jewelry class was at the College of Marin north of San Francisco.
If it weren't for my teacher I might have given up on jewelry.
I'm really mad I can't remember his name, he was so cool.
All you had to do was try. It was all about learning.

If you have a jewelers saw, a vise, a dremel and a coat hanger you can make this tool.
Well you don't need a dremel, but the tool you are making will be a dremel bit.

Straighten out your coat hanger enough where you can cut an inch and a half off (using your jewelers saw).
okay now put that wire standing up in a vise.
Using your jewelers saw cut about 1/2 an inch right through the middle.
You now have a sander bit for your dremel.

You can buy a larger version from a supply place. However I find them a bit too long and wonky.
So I modify it by cutting off about a half inch from the bottom of the bit.

Once you put the bit into your dremel you will need a piece of sandpaper to fit the bit. The little bit made with the coat hanger is great for sandpaper scraps. You put the sandpaper in with some extra hanging out the end. Slowly depress your foot pedal on the dremel to make sure you have the right direction and the sandpaper facing the right way. It will curl up to make a nice round sander.

The last pic might look a little strange considering my hand isn't holding the dremel.
I needed that hand to take the picture!

One of the best tools ever.
If you can figure out ways to lessen the time you spend finishing the better.
Your rings will always be comfortable if you finish the inside.

Next up Make your own Sanding sticks!

Follow my blog with bloglovin Delicious Save this on Delicious

Jewelry Making Tips - My Bench Skin

ok back to spreading the jewelry making tips and tricks....

after a few years of no jewelry making,
I spent 4 days cleaning my bench area
(and creating a pile of crap in front of it)
I got rid of all the 'stuff' I never used,
moved things around and made it more efficient.

Ok so today's tip...

I use a BENCH SKIN that I made from a piece of leather and grommets.
I hang it from hooks beneath my bench to catch all the silver filings and scrap,
and a few bounced gems or anything else I have butter fingers on.
It's large enough to have the front lay in my lap as I saw.
When I'm not sawing I can fold it back into itself a bit and it's out of my way.
I used the smooth side up so it's easy to use an index card to lift the silver filings and into my 'scrap' bag.

I've used other people's setups where they have a drawer that catches the filings.
However I sit extremely low in comparison to other people and I would constantly hit my elbow on that darn drawer! So this works well for me. Plus my bench was handmade for me by a friend so it's not your standard setup.

A word on my collection of scrap filings...
anyone who makes things out of gold or silver should (and most likely does) save all scrap because IT'S VALUABLE! We save it and trade it back in to get MONEY or CREDIT! I hold on to it until silver prices skyrocket then I send it in to my favorite jewelry supply shop There are other places to refine your metal if you don't want to set up an account at Rio Grande.

So to anyone who buys ECO FRIENDLY METAL thinking they are doing the right thing you have a great intention but are being bamboozled by savvy sellers hitting that emotional ecological button of yours. We all reuse metals as much as possible but we don't own refineries so no one can say where their specific sheet or wire or ingot came from.
It's my greatest pet peeve when I run across someone selling under this guise.
The more you know, the better decisions you can make.

next up
sawing tips and tricks

Follow my blog with bloglovin Delicious Save this on Delicious

Mid Century Jewelry Collection

My late Aunt Dooley's jewelry collection is being featured at M. Schons gallery and website.

Please click on the description link next to the two lines of photographs for more information and prices.

Follow my blog with bloglovin Delicious Save this on Delicious