A Ring From Scratch




Introduction: A Ring From Scratch

My inspiration for this project came to me when I visited the Cartier exhibit at the Denver Art Museum. Since I am a very resourceful machinist by trade I figured that I could try this. These rings are just for fun. If I were to propose to my current girl friend I would probably need a bit more practice!

With readily available materials I began work on some just-for-fun rings!

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Step 1: Machining the Ring Blank

At one time Aluminum was the most valuable metal on earth because it was so hard to manufacture! The reason I use aluminum was because it is cheap (today), relatively soft, and easy to work with.

I started with a 1.00" diameter 6061-T6 aluminum rod which I machined down to size.


-Metal Lathe

-Drill bits (Center drill, pilot drill, Silver & Deming drill)

-Turning, Facing, & Boring tools (HSS, Carbide, Indexable)

-Calipers or Micrometer

1. Pick your Ring Material




-Stainless Steel


2. Pick your Ring Size


3. Know your Stone Size

-Round (diameter), Rectangular (Width/Height)

Step 2: File Like MAD!!

File the Ring Blank into the shape that you want!


-Files (Bastard, double cut, smooth)

-Needle Files

-File card (for cleaning files)

-Assorted engraving tools

-Dremel, burrs,

-Buffing tools

File using a "PUSH" stroke. Keep both hands on the file; drive hand and palm the tip.

Step 3: Making the Prongs!


-Needle files

-Rotary tool


Again, using files make shape the prongs for the stone! Be careful and take your time!

Use your imagination to shape the metal !

Step 4: Polish!


-Sand paper (sanding sponge)

-Scotch brite pads

-3M wheels

-Cotton Buffing wheels

-Buffing compound (medium, fine, ultra fine, super fine)

-Rotary buffing tool

Using care and taking your time, buff, polish and sand the ring into shape!

Step 5: Fitting the Stone


-Pliers (jewelers, precision)


Be careful with step! You want the stone to be solid but no crushing it!

Step 6: Oops!

Well....I broke it. I pushed too hard and broke on of the prongs off!

Conclusion: Since this was my first time making rings and fitting stones I feel that I did fairly well, but I still need loads of practice. I tried and that is what counts!

Also the aluminum was 6061-T6 which is a hardened aluminum the prongs are less malleable and therefore, are more likely to fracture.

This was worth the try! In the future I will make more, try harder, and have fun!

Step 7: Boxes

Here I made the hinge and the box. Just for fun!

Good luck making! Have fun!

Thanks for viewing!

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    4 Discussions


    5 years ago on Introduction

    Nice work! Being a machinist sounds like a fun trade.


    5 years ago

    Are you sure that was your first one? Good job! When you set the stone, do you just use pliers to bend the prongs or is there a different method?


    Reply 5 years ago on Introduction

    Well..the purple heart ring was first but by a day. I'm sure there is a better method of bending prongs, I only used pliers.

    I should have made the prongs thinner. Also a rectangular stone is hard to fit.


    5 years ago on Introduction

    you make it look easy, nice and straight forward