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A client wanted a traditional design for his engagement ring.
This instructable shows you how his ring was created using the lost wax casting system.
To begin with I cut a section of jewellers wax, ( a special wax that has great properties for cutting, sawing and carving) into the basic ring shape. I created a hole the same size required for the finished ring.
Step 1: Seating the diamond.
I decided how high the diamond was to sit, then using small engraving tools, I cut a square hole for the diamond to sit in.
You can also make out lots of faint white lines on the wax ring blank. These will determine which partsof the wax are to be cut away to form the shape of the ring.
Step 2: The basic shaping.
Step 3: The setting is begun
Once this was complete, I scribed the central part of the ring shank, so that I could determine how wide the ring was to be.
Step 4: The ring shank is cut back.
The wax is now beginning to look more like an engagement ring.
Step 5: The prongs revealed.
Here you can see that I have cut back the wax in the mid section of the setting to reveal the four corner prongs.
Step 6: Making it visually lighter.
Step 7: Making a mould
Sometimes in the casting process, their may be a casting failure, where the item doesn't cast perfectly. By making a mould, I can create duplicates of this ring.
If the first wax produced, fails to make a good platinum cast, I can simply go to this stage and create another wax model using the mould.
During the "lost wax casting " process, the wax is lost in the process when it melts in the kiln. By making a mould I wouldn't have to re-carve the model should a failure occur.
Step 8: Pouring the mould.
You can see that I have half poured the liquid rubber into the mould box. I stopped to take the picture, and the mould box was filled to completely cover the ring model.
Step 9: The finished mould
Encased inside is the wax model.
I use a sharp blade to cut the mould open, to remove the wax model.
The cavity left in the mould is a perfect copy of the master wax model.
To produce more wax models, liquid wax is injected into this mould. Within 30 seconds, it cools and the mould is opened to reveal a wax duplicate.
If I wanted to produce hundreds of this design, I would simply use this mould again and again. tat however is for the "high street". I make unique items for each client, so I won't re-use this mould again.
Step 10: A ring is finished.
Whilst I cast my own gold and silver items, platinum casting requires some very specialist equipment. So the wax is used in the "lost wax casting process" and the platinum ring is returned.
I then clean up the cast piece, I file, sand and polish it and set the diamond.
Here is the finished item.