Jewelry Making Bench Tips

Jeremy Pavlow shares his common jewelry making bench tips by taking advantage of other tools and materials not normally used for jewelry making. Here are some very useful tips he uses around the shop every day.

Not Just For Oral Hygiene

I use a motorized throw away toothbrush, such as a Crest spin brush, on articles that need a quick cleaning. I let the brush do all the work. It gets behind stones perfectly without scratching polished pieces. I keep the brush next to the ultrasonic at all times for quick dipping.

Fast Food, Fast Find

I use small paper cups (the kind fast food restaurants have for condiments) to hold my parts. I keep them handy on my bench to hold jump rings or sizing pieces. I label them on the side for quick spotting.

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Loop-De-Loupe

I attach my loupe to my bench pin with a string just long enough to dangle a bit. It’s always there when I need it.

Bottoms Up

I rubber banded a bottle cap to my bench pin for a pool of oil for my setting burs. It’s always there when I need a quick dip.

Nail It Down

Don’t think it’s not possible- you can nail that runaway pedal easily. Just find the right hole and attach it to the floor. Velcro does a good job also.

Eye This

I use a small empty eye drop bottle for my flux. Soldering has never been easier. Just drip it on and solder away.

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Java Jewels

Use coffee filters to clean your plating solution. It works best if you pour the solution through the filter while the solution is hot. Then throw the used papers in with your sweeps.

Forget Those Lighters

I know it’s quick but it is not safe. Never keep a lighter around a flame. Look into getting an electric starter. They are available in most suppliers catalogue.

Tarn X

This stuff is awesome. Keep a beaker full of it near the sink to dip your tarnished gold or silver. Make sure you rinse well, and cover the beaker when not in use.

More Dental Fun

My dentist gave me some of his old dental picks. They work great. Grind them to a tip and use them for solder picks, to unknot chains, apply glue, and to check for loose stones. These are just some of the uses I’ve found. Explore away!

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Soft Sounds

If you use a mini anvil or bench block on your bench, you can curb all the hammering noise by putting a flat piece of cloth under it. What a difference.

By Jeremy Pavlow
© Bench Magazine, 2004 Winter
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BENCH Magazine is devoted to the Bench Jeweler in retail jewelry stores and small trade shops.
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