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Picture of Bullet Necklace

This is my first go at any kind of jewelry. It will end up being a wedding gift for my fiancé. It has been a fun project to see come together.

 
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Step 1: Preparing Bullets

Picture of Preparing Bullets
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You may start with a bullet that is meant to be loaded or you can remove one from a live round. I removed mine from a live Russian 7.62x54R round from my Mosin Nagant. You can use what ever round you desire. The best and safest way to remove a bullet from the brass is by far a bullet puller. I tend to do things the hard way so I used a copper tube cutter. I do not recommend this do to the hazards working around live gun powered. Spend the money I didn't and buy a puller. Once I cut open the brass I punched the bullet out on a vise.

You can now take one of your spent rounds and first drill out the primer making sure the hole stays in the center. I used a 1/4" drill bit. Counter sink the hole to add a nice clean taper. Drill one more hole through the side near the primer to feed the chain through. The size will depend on how big your chain will be.

Step 2: Preparing Back End of Bullets

To add more to the necklace then just the bullet I wanted to use the back end of the brass to give more variety. For my project I needed 10 ends.(Only use rounds that the primer has been ignited. It is extremely unsafe to drill into a live primer. Thank you ralbert17) 4 for the necklace 4 for a matching pair of earrings and 2 for a matching pair of cufflinks for myself. You need to drill and counter sink the primer on all the ends before cutting the ends off. Use a copper pipe cutter to cut as close to the end as possible. Sand the cut end flat for glueing 8 of 10 ends into pairs and the remaining 2 onto cufflink blanks. I found some extra blanks at my work. I used gorilla 2 part epoxy to glue the ends together. You can solder the 2 ends together but i didn't want the ruff finish of the brass to change with the heat. Now drill a small hole in the seam of the the 2 ends after the epoxy has fully cured. I used a 1/16" bit. I could not find an eyelet that matched the finish of the ends and was the right size so I modified some jump rings to fit my needs. Use the same epoxy to glue the eyelets into the ends.

Step 3: Adding a Little Sparkle

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I wanted some color added to this sea of brass. I found some glass gems pulled from a bracelet bought at my local craft store. They were just the right size to drop into the hole drilled into the primer. Use the same epoxy for this step. They will go into the main bullet, cufflinks, glued ends and earrings.

Step 4: Assemble the Necklace

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I used a 30" brass/bronze chain. Start with feeding the main bullet onto the chain. Next I added some brass skulls using small brass jump rings to connect them to the chain. I then added the brass ends with glass gems using more jumps rings. To finish it off push the bullet you pulled at the beginning in the empty brass. I was lucky that my bullet "snapped" into place and stayed firmly in place. If you want you can glue it in place.

Step 5: Enjoy Your New Necklace

Picture of Enjoy Your New Necklace

I hope my fiancé will love how I have designed and built this piece of jewelry for her. I plan on making a gift box to present it to her. I encourage you to add new and different items onto the chain to make it unique. I would love to see your creations.

Happy building!

ralbert171 month ago

Do Not cut live ammunition. Get a bullet puller. While the case is brass and you will probably not create a spark there are other sources of ignition available; including the live primer.

Also, how is that live primer being removed? Please do not use a punch and hammer as that is a good way to set it off. The primer is the largest source of lead poisoning so if you set it off you will be breathing lead vapors.

And you do not want to leave a live primer in any jewelry you create so make sure that is removed.

Always treat live ammunition with respect; extract the bullet, powder, and primer the correct way so you don't get injured. The best way would be to go to someone that reloads and enlist their help.

velokenneth (author)  ralbert171 month ago

I agree with you on using a bullet puller to remove a bullet from a live round. I even mentioned it in step one.

"The best and safest way to remove a bullet from the brass is by far a bullet puller. I tend to do things the hard way so I used a copper tube cutter. I do not recommend this do to the hazards working around live gun powered. Spend the money I didn't and buy a puller."

I took ever safety measure I could short of using a puller.

As far as the primers go I only used spent rounds to drill out the primers. I have no doubt that if I were to drill into a live primer it would go off. The only live primer was on the one live round I cut into. That primer was not used on any of the jewelry and was disposed of properly. I do admit I was not clear on what brass I used to when drilling out the primers and will make that correction without fail.

I do treat everything involved with guns and ammunition with respect as my father taught me from a very young age.

Thank you for your concern

gravityisweak11 months ago

Awesome! Don't wear this to Massachusetts though. Unless you have a Massachusetts firearms license, it is illegal to possess even an empty shell casing. This also seems to be the case in Washington D.C. Although I'm sure there is no clear definition of how much you have to change this shell casing for it not to be considered a casing anymore. Totally ridiculous on all accounts, but still worth mentioning.

Delace11 months ago

This is beautiful!

I think you should also enter this in the vintage contest- it would have my vote!

buck2217 made it!11 months ago

I have made something similar to the cufflinks, and also a necklace (not pictured) which I engraved my name on (they say everyone has a bullet with their name on-- you should own that bullet!!).

I cut my bullets (9mm) in a pillar drill, turning slowly in contact with a hacksaw blade-- haven't killed anyone yet!

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velokenneth (author)  buck221711 months ago

Very nice, I really like those cufflinks. I agree about owning the bullet with my name on it. I'll need to get mine soon!

snicholson11 months ago
this is very cool. well done.