Laser Welding Solid Back on Opal Ring

This article is a step by step procedure in Laser Welding Solid Back on Opal Ring.

The customer wanted a solid back on a ring in which the center stone wouldn’t take heat or where you would have to butcher the mounting to remove the stone.

So this was a job for the Light Saber (What we affectionately call our Laser Welder).

Laser Welding Solid Back on Opal Ring

Laser Welding Solid Back on a Man’s Opal Ring

image_2 I wanted a really accurate copy of the bottom so I used a piece of clear packing tape. Laying it across the inside you can see through it and trace very accurately. I traced the inside with a Twin Tip Sharpie so the line would last through being used as a stencil.
image_3 Once the tape is removed from the inside of the ring, it easily sticks to the gold sheet and is ready to be cut out. Once it’s cut out, bend the metal gently with the tape still in place to minimize clean up. Match the inside curve of the ring, then remove the tape from the gold.
image_4 Check the plate for fit and make any adjustments until you’re sure it fits well. Then weld one end in place.
image_5 Push the other end tightly into the hollow back and tack it into place.
image_6 Check again to make sure the plate fits properly, then weld this end solid.
image_7       image_8
Weld the center section solid making sure that you smooth the welds as much as possible.
image_9 File the inside smooth now and burnish any porosity
image_10 The finished inside shank.

By Steve Satow - © Bench Magazine
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BENCH Magazine is devoted to the Bench Jeweler in retail jewelry stores and small trade shops.
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 Steve Satow is the owner of Gem Services & Imaging and Senior Goldsmith at Saxon Jewelers & Engraving. Seteve graduated from Bownman Technical School in Lancaster, PA in August 1976, with additional GIA training in bench tricks, setting, wax, casting in place, and platinum, and received digital imaging training from GemVision Digital Goldsmith. Steve built a 750 sq. ft. laser equipped repair shop at his home. When confronted with recurring problem at work he can come home and make a tool or technique to resolve it.
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