Paperclip Jump Rings? No Way!





Introduction: Paperclip Jump Rings? No Way!

Using tools that you probably already have you too can make inexpensive jump rings!

First off though, I have to say thanks to Mat from BENTFORMS, for answering all my random questions.

Step 1: Supplies

You only need a few things,

1. A Phillips head screwdriver you wouldn't mind gouging up. The screwdrivers diameter will be the same as the rings you make.

2. Pliers. Any will do, just make sure they're not really tiny or really big.

3. Paperclips. I use the 'Jumbo' kind from a certain store that rhymes with 'Maples' you can get 700 for around $7, great deal if you ask me. Too thin of a clip won't make very good rings, however, so make sure yours are thick enough.

4. Rotary tool with cut-off wheel. This is what you'll use to cut your rings. While you CAN use a wirecutter, they will leave points on the ends of your rings, eventually 2 ring's openings will line up and they will come apart. The flat edge a cut-off wheel makes is perfect for this, although your rings will be a little misshapen due to the material the wheel takes away.

5. Vice-Grip. This is what you'll use to hold the straightened out clip on your screwdriver.

Step 2: Straighten Your Clip!

This step really needs no explanation, just use your pliers to straighten out the clip as best you can. Avoid bending the clip too much though, otherwise it will become brittle and break. It's okay if there's some curvature to your clip, it won't matter because you're wrapping it around the screwdriver anyway.

Step 3: Prepare Your Clip for Wrapping!

Position your paperclip into one of your screwdrivers wings, this will make it easy to hold the clip in place when you vice-grip it, and also keep it secure while you wrap it around the screwdriver.

Sorry for the blurry picture, but I think you get the point.

Step 4: Wrap!

Finally, the fun part!

Twist the clip around the screwdriver, but go slow and make sure you get a good coil. If there's any space between the rings, that will show up as a... very open ring once you cut it. Take the time to make sure you wind it as best you can, it will make using your rings a lot easier! Don't try to wrap the whole thing around the screw driver, you won't be able to use the last ring anyway.

Step 5: Cuttin' Time!

Wear safety glasses for this step!
I can't tell you how many times I've had a cut-off wheel break and go flying.

When you cut your rings, go slow and use a steady hand. You want your rings edges to more or less match up. If you rush your hand will wobble and you'll end up with slanted edges which won't be very useful.

In the second picture, you can see that I ended up with 6 rings, the 2 off to the side are the ones I couldn't use, the bottom one being where I clamped the clip to the screwdriver

Step 6: That's It!

There you go, now you can make jump rings out of paperclips all day long, which you'll probably end up doing seeing how you only get 6 rings per clip.

Have fun!

Note: In the last picture you can see what I made using these clips. I put the bracelet in some Tarn-ex, and it left it black, I think it looks neat so that's why I'm sharing it with you!

A perfect companion to this instructable would be my other one, on how to make a simple jewelry clasp.



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    Since paperclips are short, pre-bent and of unknown gauge, I'd suggest some bulk wire like others have above. You'll get better rings and waste less time and material. If you're a newbie, you can get 30 yards of 20 gauge wire for maybe $6. It's not the best value, but you also don't get stuck with 3 miles of wire you don't want. 20 or 22 gauge is a lot easier to cut and work with, but when you get more into it you'll need to get 18 and 16 gauge. The thickness matters - some kinds of weaves require rings of a specific thickness to size ratio (called aspect ratio or AR).

    Thank you for the nice, clear Instructable. Now I can't decide if I want to make a ton and create chainmaille jewelry or something larger for the fantasy enthusiast inside me.

    Start with making some chain. Start with some basics like mobius or byzantine, then try some sheets of European weaves or more complex chains. Big projects might just put you off ring mail forever. Learning the basics with some simple projects will prep you for that shirt-'o-mail.

    what's this ( noob) is this the keychain ring thing or what? please explain what's this for

    Jumprings are used when working with chain and charms. The keychain rings are called split rings.

    it's for making chainmail you'll also typically need two pairs of needlenose pliers

    thanks for the instructable its nice and clear!


    i think the byzantine weave looks good....

    ..When i say "started"i mean like gaining popularity, lil kids making stick and rubberband bows and arrows.
    That kind of thing. =S

    Yeh, kids have been making rubberband weapons since I can remember, and I predate the consoles and pc by a few years. As for the "medieval guys" They've been doing that for even longer than I've been alive. My mom was active in the SCA before I was born. So, I doubt videogames have as much of an influence as you think.