Introduction: How to Make a Silver Droplet Pendant Using a Dremel and No Casting
I wanted to make my wife something special for Christmas and after much thought finally settled on a silver droplet pendant. I wanted to make it using just a Dremel multitool, without casting, and thought it would be great to write up as as Instructable for you.
I inscribed it on the back using a compass and used silver-coated copper wire to attach it to the chain. It measures 12.5mm wide by 20mm long.
- 2mm silver sheet
- 0.5mm silver plated copper wire
- Medium and fine sandpaper
- Silver polish
- Yellow duster
Step 1: Draw Your Pendant Shape
Draw the shape of your pendant on the silver, fitting it so there will be as little waste as possible. You could print the photo I have taken, cut it out and use the same outline I did, or draw your own. I found pencil didn't mark the surface so used a black fine-liner instead. Otherwise you could scratch with a compass or jewellers scribe tool. Sometimes the metal is supplied with a plastic coating which can make it hard to draw on. Peel it off.
Step 2: Cut It Out
Cut the shape out using the 1mm cutting disc on your Dremel. Hold the silver with a folded piece of paper in the jaws of the pliers so they don't mark. It gets too hot to hold by hand. You are better off cutting it slightly too big, rather than slightly too small; you can always even up later.
Save the silver dust and shards for melting down or another project.
Step 3: Cut It Out 2
Cut round the edge, keeping the cuts as short as possible to save the silver. Take your time! If you mess it up see it as a practice!
Step 4: Tidy Up With Sanding Drum
Use the sanding drum on your multitool to round the edges off. Take your time! Once you shave off metal you can't put it back! After removing a small amount, turn the piece over in your hand so you can check you are making it even and symmetrical.
Step 5: Sand the Top and Corners
Use the multitool to thin the tail and round the corners to make the piece droplet shaped. Use cold water to quench it if it gets too hot to hold.
Step 6: Medium Sandpaper
Use some medium sandpaper to smooth the edges and create a neat rounded edge.
Step 7: Fine Sandpaper
Use the fine sandpaper to smooth the edges further. If you can't get a scratch out go back to the medium sandpaper. If it's too deep for the medium sandpaper, go back to the grinding drum.
Step 8: Cut a Notch for the Wire
Cut a notch across the back for the wire to lock onto. Start by cutting notches on either side at the back then join them up.
Step 9: Polish
Polish using silver polish and a cloth. I started with a blue cleaning cloth before using a yellow duster and the polishing wheel on the Dremel; I found the Dremel gave the most scratch-free finish. After dipping the polishing wheel in the silver polish cover it with your gloved hand or a cloth when you start running it otherwise there will be a line of silver polish across the ceiling.
Step 10: Add the Wire Chain Attachment
Polish the 0.5mm wire by rubbing it with a clean cloth and silver polish, then wind twice around the notched part of your pendant. Twist tightly behind the pendant, checking that the wire is fitting into the notches and that the wire isn't wobbly on the pendant afterwards.
Make a few twists and then wind round a 2mm drill bit, as per the photos, before twisting again and then snipping off with pliers or wire cutters. Make sure you leave a couple of twists above the open loop so that it doesn't come undone. If the end doesn't look neat you can neaten it up with a metal file or sandpaper. Check the diameter of the loop on the end of the chain; it needs to be able to fit through the loop on your pendant. I gently squeezed the loop on my chain to make it narrower as I didn't want to have to make the loop on the pendant too large.
Thread the chain through and you are done!
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