This instructable will document the process of making this simple elegant ring that I made for my sister.
It's made with as few special tools as possible, so it can be done without investing too much money in tools. All in all it cost me around 40 dollars. I'm a student, so I have to keep things as cheap as possible, while still looking good.
Enjoy, and feel free to ask any questions, I don't bite.
If you think I did a good job, please vote for me in the Rings and the On a budget contest.
Step 1: Tools and Materials
For this ring you don't need much really.
- About 10 cm 3x3mm square silver wire
- A 3mm round cut stone. I used a peridot, because i like the olive color, and it looks nice in the silver
- Welding clamp
- Something round the size of the designated finger. To find it, either measure the finger, or borrow a ring you know fits. I found a socket that fit perfect, but anything steel and round can go really. Be creative, or even better, get a ring mandrel.
- The only special tool for this ring, is a dremel bit, a so called hart bur, specifically designed to cut seats for stones. It cost me about 5 bucks, so i don't consider this a huge expense.
And that's it! Most of this is common tools found in every workshop.
Step 2: Wrap the Silver
This is not the best way, but it works and it requires less tools. The best way would be to cut the wire to size, and shape it around a ring mandrel.
To get the ring shape, clamp it to the socket or whatever round thing you found. Then secure the clamp in a bench, so you can pull the silver without it moving. It will be very hot, you do NOT want to hold it in your hand!
Get a plier and grip the end of the silver. Gripping it will damage the silver, so the less you grip, the more of the silver can be used.
Now start heating the socket and silver. Keep the heat concentrated on the socket, and the part of the silver that is closest to the socket. Be careful not to melt it, keep it at a dull red, and start pulling and twisting the silver at the same time. If it's heated right, it shouldn't be difficult. When you reach a full round, put the rest as close to the first round as possible. This will inevitably make a little warping when it's straighted out, but it will be very little. Push the end in with the end of the pliers.
And again, this is really hot. Use common sense, and a little caution and you'll be good.
Step 3: Cut the Ends Off
Now, clamp the wrapped ring in a bench vise with some protective padding to not scratch it, and cut the ugly ends off.
I used a dremel cutting disc, the thinest i could find. A jewelers saw would be better but again, the budget and accessibility.
The cut has to be as perpendicular as possible. I used a magnifying glass to better see what i was doing.
Save the leftovers, they can be remelted.
Step 4: Straighten Up and Cut Out for the Stone
Now that you have a ring that don't overlap, it's time to straighten it out, so it's flat. Be careful if you use pliers, it might scratch the silver. If you do use pliers, use parallel jaw pliers. I used a bench vise, padded with wood and a lot of pressure. It left a small warp, but you'll have to know it to notice it.
To cut the gap for the stone, set the ring back in the vise and score a line with the calipers set to the correct diameter. Cut the silver with the cutting disc, again as perpendicular as possible. Refine the surface of the cut with a small file, and also round off the edges of the
Just as a test, I put my stone in just to get an idea how it would look like.
Step 5: Cut the Seat for the Stone
Since the top of the gap is the size of the stone, you will have to widen the gap a little. I found a plier that did the job nicely.
Then back in the vise, and very carefully cut small seats for the stone on each surface. Cut the seat about half a millimeter under the top, and straight in the middle. I recommend trying it out on the leftovers first, to practice, it can be a little tricky. It's important that you cut it straight, otherwise the stone will be at an angle and look weird.
After it's cut, sand it over with sanding paper going up to about 1200 grit, and finally polish it with a buffing wheel.
Step 6: Set the Stone
To create the tension that holds the stone, start by clamping the ring in, and squeeze it in so the ends touch. Then open it again, only enough to slip the stone in and hold it in place. I made a overly complex setup to do this, but it was just because i was alone at home, if you have someone to help it's not that complicated. It's also extremely satisfying to hear that little click then
Step 7: All Done!
And there's your ring! It's not the most complicated ring, but it's a little different than the rest, homemade and quite nice looking. I spent about 5 hours in total, and about 40 dollars in materials, so for a unique silver ring, that's not too bad.
Once again, thank you for reading, and please feel free to ask questions.
(I'm just an amateur doing things because it's fun, please don't be too harsh)
And finally, if you think this instructable is worth it, please vote for me in the Rings and the On a budget contests.
First Prize in the
Second Prize in the
On a Budget Contest
Participated in the
Burn It! Contest