Faux Ivory Ring Carved From Bone





Introduction: Faux Ivory Ring Carved From Bone

This little tutorial will show you how to create a ring that will surely have the does chasing you down.

Above you can see the finished ring, it shines like ivory, perfectly matching my pasty pale self!

If you like my tutorial, please click the vote in the top right to help me in the Jewelry Contest!

Step 1: Tools and Materials

Before beginning this project, you must realize that bone dust is very fine and has the potential to be poisonous. Do your best not to breath it, and if you don't have a mask, DO NOT ATTEMPT THIS.

That said, the requirements for this project are as follows.

Selection of spade bits
Fine tooth saw (many options here)
Dremel (optional)
Belt sander (optional, but significantly reduces time consumed)
Hydrogen peroxide (for whitening)
Polishing compound

Bone (I chose a deer antler)
Dowel rod matched to your finger size (optional)

Step 2: Creating a Blank

The final check, put on your safety glasses and mask!
Now we can begin.

Put your bone of choice into your vise, make sure its secure. You do not want to get hit in the face with your drill if it stalls.
Chuck a spade bit roughly the size of your finger (go smaller rather the bigger if you have to, you can always make the hole bigger with the dremel later), and drill a hole a little deeper than the desired width of your ring. I went about 1/4 of an inch to give me a little extra material to work with.

Step 3: Slicing Away the Ring

You'll need your saw for this step, and it's going to get dustier from here out, so make sure you have your mask on. Another tip is to spritz your bone with water as you cut to keep the dust down.

This is fairly simple, use your saw to cut perpendicular to the hole we just bored and you'll get your finished blank.
If you wanted to created numerous rings of the same size you could have drilled much deeper and made several slices.

Starting to look like a ring isn't it? Don't fawn over it just yet, we aren't quite finished!

Step 4: The Final Stretch

This is by far the most arduous and time consuming task in this process, and there isn't a lot a guidance I can provide you. I don't think there is a single dominant method for smoothing the ring, just start out removing your largest bits of material, and end with your fine sanding.

For example, this was my process:
1. Grinding away the burrs with the dremel
2. Hitting the ring with the roughest belt I had
3. Dropping the grit until I was satisfied with the shape
4. Using the fine wheel in the dremel to smooth the ring to a satiny kind of finish

Bone tends to crack and brown under high heat, so try not to let it get hot, keep a cup of water to dip it in between sandings.

Step 5: I Wish Crest White Strips Worked for This Step

Whitening the bone will take several days, or you could just be satisfied with what you have and move onto the polishing step.

First, soak the bone in hydrogen peroxide for several hours, this will kill a lot of the bacteria that grown on bone.

Next, use fishing line or dental floss and hang your ring outside where it will get a lot of sunlight. You'll want to leave it hanging and move it around so it's always in the light for the next several days. When it is white enough for your liking, move on to the polishing.

Step 6: Polishing

You probably don't have bone polish, I don't even know if that exists. But a tube of simichrome metal polish really works for about anything.

Before I polished my ring, I carved two grooves into it purely because I thought it would look prettier. They were cut with a dremel bit. If you choose not to decorate it just go ahead and polish it.

Grab your buffing wheel or a piece of cloth or towel, squirt a pea sized spot of your polish of choice on it and go to town. Shine it until you're happy with the sheen and wipe off the excess with paper towel.

Step 7: Look at That Fineeee Jewelry

You are now the proud owner of a genuine bone ring. Now go to the bar and tell all the ladies about how you wrestled a giant grizzly bear to the ground and took his tooth to make into a ring to remember the occasion!

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    if you boil the bone in honey then bake it in the oven you can get some nice colors from gold to brown. The color depends on how long you allow it to brown in the oven.

    hiya fellow bone lovers where can i buy buffalo bone here in the uk?

    i carve or shape with bone quite a lot but have not got to grips with engraving whats the best bit or tool or burr out there that i should buy?

    Will the bone be damaged (withered away/eroded) if the ring is left in the peroxide too long?

    1 reply

    I've left bits in it for days at a time with no structural damage, in fact after a while the peroxide stops reacting with the bone and nothing will ever happen unless you add more peroxide.

    If you can get in good graces with a local butcher You can get cow bones which work pretty well for jewelry too. Never tried to make ring with them though.

    1 reply

    I've tried with a femur bone, the cylindrical nature of the bone doesn't lend itself well to ring making. You'd need a really thick piece. You're right though, lovely charms for necklaces and such!

    Iv'e made one from moose antler, you have to let your antler dry a year before making a ring to your size because they shrink and mess up your work.

    1 reply

    Whats the story with the frogs under glass photo by your name,where can I get a better look at it,its an eye catcher.

    I just used my bech belt sander for the outside shaping worked beautifully!

    I made mine the hard way by 100% Dremeling away and my ring fits but is a tiny bit oval, kinda hard to keep steady without proper tools :)

    Nice instructable Zero, I like it. I find it funny that the kind of comments HowGlidd posts come from people that have published Zero instructables!

    They have several in the works, they just can't get them perfect enough to publish.

    Have you tried human bone?

    Nicely done. One thing I will say is, don't wear gloves around anything that has any circular(or stroke) motion to it. It can and will grab the glove with your fingers/hand and do great damage! Lose a little skin and keep your fingers hopefully. Beware of clothing and hair as well, insofar as things getting caught in the werks!