Jewelry makers use many small tools for projects of all sizes. Our Small Tools section covers the equipment you’ll need for delicate procedures.
Made in Germany. Panther has earned a reputation for the highest standards in precision tool production in the world. Our burs and tools are manufactured on the most technically advanced computer assisted machinery in existence. Only the finest quality hardened…
Editor’s Note: Want to know how to make a bench jeweler’s day? Send him a box full of new tools and tell him that if he plays with those tools for a month, you’ll let him keep ’em. That’s just…
3M XR wheels, formerly known as XK wheels are ideal for sprue removal and smooth deburring with minor surface reduction. A channel can be created in the wheel for repetitive multiple part processing. They replace stone wheels, have superior edge retention and last up to 4 times longer. The side of the wheel can be used as a lap to produce crisp edges and they generate less waste than conventional wheels..
3M Radial Bristle Discs were introduced to the jewelry industry in 2000. Additional discs and end brushes have been added to the selection and over time and with the extensive selection I’ve reinvented how I semi-finish castings and perform other pre-finishing techniques. They are flexible, cool running, clean, non-loading and provide a controllable uniform finish. Here’s an overview of semi-finishing a rough casting using the discs.
– Gold and precious stones scales – Multiple weighing units: carat gram troy ounce pennyweight pound ounce grain and tael – Large LCD display (16mm height) with backlight – Control zero mode selection and data output with standard RS-232C –…
Ever spent way too much time trying to retrieve tiny jump rings, links, or other small parts out of a hot acid bath using too-large copper tongs? If you make a lot of chain or work with a lot of…
For use with piercing flat and spiral saw blades. Serrated clamps hold blades firmly. Strongly constructed with flat steel frames hardwood handles and thumbscrew locking devices. Most common depth is 2 1/4″ (57mm). Others are used when greater cutting depth…
As well as being used for chasing they may also be used as punches to make textures. A stamp or texturing punch can be struck onto an annealed blank tool to get a negative impressions of its end. Each texturing tool can then produce its own negative. These blanks in turn are then hardened and tempered. It is wise to always wear goggles when using punches of any kind.
In working on jewelry there are many tasks that seem simple – you just do it and don’t think about techniques. Milling is a prime example. You stick a bur in your flex-shaft, step on the pedal, and away you…
The Smith Little Torch™ is the versatile torch countless jewelers turn to when they need to accomplish a variety of tasks. Using a variety of tips, it’s capable of producing a flame the size of a pin head or one…
Like most bench jewelers I do a lot of bead setting and like most
bench jewelers I take pride in my work. When I bead set I want crisp
and clean beads. Recently, I was setting one pointers into white
gold skirts that would become a pair of earrings. I hadnt gotten
very far when I noticed that the beads were getting raggedy and
there was quite a bit of finning between the edges of the bead and
the melee. I knew this meant that my beading tool was becoming dull.
I would like to share with you a tool tip for sharpening a worn out
This article lists the following useful bench tools for jewelers including contact information where they can be purchased or ordered. Grobet USA LED Bench Lamp Suitable for use at the bench or on the sales floor, the Grobet USA LED Bench…
Faces can be changed to provide any combination desired. Faces can also be replaced when worn. Sold with two different faces and a wrench to tighten or remove collars. Faces are brass and nylon.
Of all the burs used on a setters bench, my one good true friend is the bud bur. Why? Because it’s one of the most diverse tools at our disposal. It is used for opening holes, cutting azures, cutting seats, as…
Stone-in-place casting is growing in practice with manufacturers and retail manufacturing operations taking advantage of these labor saving techniques. Stone-in-place casting requires gemstones be properly set in the wax model prior to casting. The most often utilized style of setting for this procedure is channel for round, baguette and princess cut gemstones..
This paper describes the conversion of dental tools into wax engraving tools, how they are held and how they are used.
Five pieces each in 36 different lengths: 4.5mm to 22.00mm in 0.5mm increments. All in 0.9mm diameter being the most commonly used.
Jewelers have been going green for many years by recycling old or worn-out tools into something new and useful. Setting burrs, normally used to cut seats in prongs, can’t be used once they become worn or damaged. But instead of throwing them away, you can create a new tool called a rotary burnisher to repair solder pits or minor surface porosity on a casting.
This article is about creating and sharpening gravers before using for your work or project as described by Tom Weishaar. Before beginning a discussion on creating a graver it might be helpful to identify the different parts of a graver. Prior…
With these pliers you can pre polish platinum and gold peg heads of any shape. Remove any nicks one prong at a time at your bench with a pumice wheel then off to the polisher and right into the sonic,…
I like to hold small pieces of metal with a clamp that allows me to file hands free. I feel it gives me better control, which means faster jobs and better fits. I took a plain mini hand vise and…
Steve Satow shares his procedure on customized bench tools such as 3 prong or peg head holder & wax stone holder used for stone setting and prong works. 3 Prong or Peg Head Holder Many times I have needed a way to hold…
Uses a 13-watt compact fluorescent tube (included) located behind the magnifying lens. The unique placement of the bulb casts light at an angle for highlighting object details. This unique shadowing feature makes details of uneven surfaces pop out to the…
Ergonomics is the safe and effective relationship between a worker and the work environment. For the bench jeweler who spends hours working with a bench pin, it is important to make it work efficiently and effectively for you. There are many modifications you can make to ensure this. People prefer different bench pins, namely a flat piercing pin vs. an angled working pin. Some modifications can be used with either type, while others work better with a specific style of bench pin.
These are some of the metal ‘ tools that you will find useful in fold-forming. Ear muffs or plugs and safety glasses.
The 1/6 HP reversible SR Motor with FCT foot-operated speed control H.20 Hand piece and 43-piece accessory kit offers superior performance and combines all of the features expected. H.20 Handpiece comes with a 1.5mm allen wrench to adjust collet tension….
Foredom has redesigned the popular Series SR Flexible Shaft motor. It has more power/torque and is rated at 1/6 HP versus 1/8 HP of the former series SR and S. It also has 33% more power over the variable speed range from start up to full speed.
Dental probes and knives make good wax tools. Your local dentist or dental hygienist or school for the same can supply you with used tools for free. If they don’t.
Created especially for jewelers by expert metalsmith and tool designer Bill Fretz, the Fretz® line of tools is precisely designed for excellent ergonomics, maximum durability and impeccable results
Heads are made of the finest quality specially treated rawhide which will not mark or scar metal. Handles are made of hardwood. Made in the USA.
Tapered in width and thickness coming to a point. Only flat side is cut providing safe edge and top.
By Old burs can serve a number of useful purposes in daily bench work. Here are two tips from jewelers at Chris Ploof Studio in Pawtucket, Rhode Island, for giving new life to old burs.
This article lists the basic tools found in a standard Western Goldsmith’s toolbox.
Pitch is used all over the world by goldsmiths and silversmiths to hold metal in place while working it with hammers, punches or chisels. It should be hard enough to fill the requirements of the chasing work done on it. Most chasers will therefore have several hardnesses available, a soft one for deep forming, a medium for regular work and a hard for planishing on. In the old days chasers would even have summer and winter formulations.
A sharp graver can improve cutting performance at the bench. There are several approaches to use when detailing a graver, including the following.
This is the first in a two-part series on green bench tips shared by jewelers who are taking an eco-friendlier approach in their shops. Small changes at the bench can make a difference. Window to the World Jennifer Dawes, Dawes Design,…
Use for engraving stone setting and other precision work. The Microblock’s stainless steel low-profile body stainless steel jaws and compact design are especially suited for microscope work or other situations where the size of a larger vise is an obstacle.
Shaping a bezel on stakes is a process of forming the metal by stretching. First the metal is bent with pliers to fit the gem, forming a shape smaller than the stone while following its contour. The gauge of the sheet metal chosen is slightly thicker than the final result. As the process unfolds, the metal is plannished (hammered) on small stakes, causing the metal to conform to the stake as it stretches. If the gemstone and the shape of the stake are the same, a very accurate bezel can be made with a minimum of time. The advantages of this technique become obvious to the craftsperson that uses creatively shaped stones or gems that do not conform to the bezel mandrels on hand.
These are high-quality Hastings Triplet Loupes. Hastings lenses are constructed from three lens elements cemented together to form a single lens. The unmatched clarity of these triplet loupes is further enhanced by black outer lens edges which eliminate color distortion….
Learn to harden and temper your own custom-shaped jewelry tools. By master goldsmith Charles Lewton-Brain. Filmed in full HD 1080p. IMPORTANT NOTE: Hardening and Tempering is a two step process, the steel MUST be tempered (softened) after hardening to be…
This paper describes two simple methods of creating a shield to be used on the end of a Foredom handpiece. The shield will prevent grindings and dust from being slung into the face. Always wear eye protection when using the handpiece.
These pliers notch round prongs easily to a given depth and replace a bur for the job. They are made to suit a specific size prong and one makes similar pliers for different prong shapes, but all based on this idea. One obtains a pair of chain nose pliers either new or from a flea market and converts them into prong notching pliers.
Jewelers and metalsmiths have had to make their own tools throughout the ages to accomplish different tasks at the jeweler’s bench. One tool a jeweler can’t do without is a hammer. Today, many styles of hammers, made in a variety of shapes and materials, are available to the jeweler. The hammer used here as an example of how to make modifications is used for riveting, shaping, forming and working on rings for sizing. The hammer has one round/slightly contoured end (called the pean) one chisel-shaped end and a hardwood handle..
This is a great modification of pliers to give you a tool that mimics the shape of your thumb and forefinger meeting, but can get into places where your fingers are too large to go.
Casting is the most important method of commercial jewelry production. Even for small workshops, lost-wax casting is often the fastest method for creating a jewelry piece, especially if there is any complexity to it. However, one of the things that jewelers forget when carving wax models for lost-wax casting is just how different wax is from metal. They often use techniques and tools designed for working with metal for carving wax, even when it does not make sense to do so. By approaching wax as wax, not metal, jewelers can come up with new and faster ways of creating wax models for casting.
One persistent daily challenge a bench jeweler faces is trying to figure out the best way to hold onto tiny, delicate objects while performing mechanical operations such as sawing, filing or burring bearings for stone setting.
There are dozens of tools available for this purpose, some centuries old and some that are modern, sophisticated and often quite expensive. An alternative is to make a simple modification to a wooden ring clamp which holds rings and other jewelry items that turns it into a useful, multi-function holder.
Small, fine drill bits used for jewelry making will become dull with normal use. Worn cutting edges make tasks more difficult and time-consuming and can cause costly accidents, including damage to jewelry and gemstones or even injury. Maintaining the cutting surfaces on your tools will ensure clean, consistent work at the bench. This installment will teach you how to sharpen the cutting edges of a fine drill bit. There are different styles of bit tips, but this example features a chisel tip. Let’s begin with a look at its anatomy.
Soldering with power generated by this hydrogen torch system is a terrific alternative to using pressurized fuel and oxygen tanks in your shop! This state-of-the-art system, designed to meet a full range of jewelers’ needs, is extremely safe and easy…
Japanese chasing tools are made from steel blanks available in Japan called tagane. Japanese chasing hammers are lightweight with long straight handles and smaller faces than European styles. They balance beautifully in the hand and are effortless to use. The type of Japanese chasing I learned was called uchidashi. Mostly a top-down technique, this style of chasing includes chiseling to remove material, line and dot inlay, and hammer engraving using a chisel. The tools are shaped at the working end to exact specifications including angles and millimeter measurements of the faces for their particular use.
Euro Tool, Inc. offers a wide variety of innovative and standard holding device’s to make working at the bench easier, safer and more productive. Here’s an overview of a selection.
Knew Concepts saw frames are light and rigid, providing precise control, reduced blade breakage and very little flex.
Myth: Magnesia blocks are superior soldering surfaces to charcoal blocks: A topic that seems to raise a fair amount of spirited discussion and strong opinions is what is the best soldering surface: firebrick, charcoal, magnesia, solderite – the list goes on. Charcoal is a very traditional choice, but it is seen as having limitations in terms of both longevity and safety. I was curious to see if any of the practices out there served to really mitigate these issues, and how charcoal compares to magnesia, another popular choice.
I make all my own wax carving tools and hot wax tools.I have done this since the early 1970’s when I could find only dental tools ready-made on the market. I was told a bent nail would suffice, but thought I could do better. So my tools and techniques developed together and now the one is probably a reflection of the other.For a long, time I thought the variety in tools was endless, but now I only make modifications of a few basic shapes. They are shown below. The tools are easy to make and require no specialized equipment.
Learn to be able to quickly identify what quality of steel a tool is made of and whether it’s low quality or worthwhile to use. By master goldsmith Charles Lewton-Brain. Filmed in full HD 1080p.
Here iss a nice little tool that makes use of an old setting bur. If you take the bottom teeth off a setting bur and polish the surface, you will have a tool that allows you to get right up next to the wall of a bezel and work on it without harming the metal on the bottom of the piece..
A bench jeweler typically uses a split mandrel to sand and finish the inside of a ring. Various grits of abrasive papers can be cut to size and inserted into the slit of the mandrel, where they are held by friction during the rotary filing process. With minor modification, you can use the split mandrel as a holding device to finish round bezels and other small jewelry components quickly and consistently..
Down on your bench, look: It’s a file. It’s a bur. It’s Super Tool! At first it seemed so ordinary. You went to use it for a project you were working on, but for some reason it didn’t work so…
Dapping tools are punches with a ball shaped end. As they are used to dome metal discs and making halves of beads they are sometimes called doming punches. They are usually used with a dapping block, a square or rectangular block of steel or wood which has perfect hemispherical indentations in different sizes.
When one gets a new file one traditionally dips it in alcohol and sets fire to it to burn off any grease (this could be dangerous-use great care). Get the longest files you are comfortable with as the long stroke is very efficient. 20 cm or longer needle files from…
OptiVISOR lenses are ground and polished to precise ophthalmic standards. The OptiVISOR frame is made of lightweight durable impact-resistant materials. The comfortable continuous headband is fully adjustable to fit any size quickly and easily. Adjustable pivot knobs hold visor in…
Cup-shaped cutters used to form a decorative bead or fine row of cuts on any piece of jewelry. Set of six contains sizes 2, 4, 6, 8, 10, 12, and a chuck holding handle.
These high-quality reasonably priced diamond tweezers are equal to the quality of more expensive brands. Available in black or matte stainless finish. Made in Italy.
Our castings can be flawless, our assembly precise, and our settings secure — but let any surface go a bit rough, a little uneven and wobbly, and the jewelry is judged to be inferior. Ironically, even the ultimate finish begins to deteriorate as soon as a piece of jewelry leaves the showroom. But to attract a willing buyer at a fair price, a piece needs be in top form when it enters the showroom. The tools, tips, and techniques presented in this article can help manufacturers avoid the harsh criticism that can result when a less-than-perfect finish clouds the public view.
Tried and tested at Stuller. Premium Swiss-made saw blades. Note: 8/0 is smallest size #14 is largest.
Chasing and repousse is carried out on various surfaces using steel punches to strike and manipulate sheet metal or cast objects. Flat pattern chasing or stamping sheet metal can be done on an anvil, or the bottom of an old iron which makes an excellent surface to strike on. Sometimes thin double-sided carpet tape works well to stick a piece of metal onto a flat surface for stamping or chasing like this. Most chasing and repousse however has more dimensional relief than flat chasing and is often done with the metal fixed onto pitch. Various pitch types and hardnesses are available from most tool suppliers.
This Compact (pocket) digital gauge measures from 0 to 25mm and 0 to 1″. Millimeter accurate to two decimal points and inch fractions to three decimal points. Stainless steel with high-impact plastic housing. Inside and outside measurements. Comes with protective…
For polishing it is recommended to use primarily bristle brushes for most of the removal work and to follow up with a buff where necessary. Feel free to use a lot of compound, it is the compound that does the work, not the buff. Old polishers would have dozens of shaped and turned wooden, leather and even paper shapes and wheels to go on the spindle for different problems.
The mantra of polishing jewelry is the shinier the better – and obtaining polishing perfection takes skill and practice. It also helps to have the right tools in your polishing arsenal. The following are some suggestions for tools and tricks you can use to obtain a better shine.
One of the most frequent foldforming questions Charles Lewton-Brain gets is that someone’s forging hammer isn’t working well for them. See how Charles changes a commercial forging hammer to be useful for foldforming. Filmed in full HD 1080p.
how one of 3M’s radial bristle discs to a non-jeweler friend, and you are almost guaranteed to get a lukewarm response: ‘This is what you’re so excited about?’ But to the jewelers who have eagerly adopted them, these simple circular brushes are ‘the greatest thing since flexi-straws…
Beading tools and dot punches lose their form and become dull as you use them. You can recondition a tool at least ten or twelve times, or you may need a special size, or perfect polish for a particular job. They can be reconditioned fairly easily. The best tool that I have found to do this is the 40 hole.
This unique tool allows you to access the entire circumference of your ring. Includes nine plastic sleeve inserts marked clearly in U.S. sizes from 2-13 and in millimeter sizes 13-22. Firmly grips ring from the inside without marking, which allows…
While it is clearly impossible to give a set of rules for each tool and procedure that goldsmiths use, this section gives some examples of the kinds of rules that may be helpful to review when using powered equipment. hand tools and processes have been left out, primarily because their dangers tend to be of the “don’t put your hands in the way of things that might snap or slip” kind. Many specific hints associated with hand tools can be found in the procedures section.
This article provides and describes the useful tips for selecting the correct saw blade by Alan Revere including some important things to consider for blade selection. Sawing is a fast and easy way to cut and separate a piece of metal…
Sheet Metal Tool Modification, Look for: WISS Hand Seamer (as LAST resort BRAMEC or VISE-GRIP) sheet metal bending tools and modify as shown. Recommended for quick, tight crimping! I prefer the Wiss Hand Seamer Model HS-1 or as a LAST resort you can purchase Vise-Grip Locking Sheet Metal Tool #23 or Bramec sheet metal tool-straight handle.
This selected list describes a number of small, easily made tools which can improve efficiency, speed and ease of working at the bench. While by no means a complete listing of the tools one has at one’s bench or of vernacular goldsmiths tools it demonstrates examples of the kind of thinking required for ease of working at the bench. Remember, speed and efficiency give one more creative time. Each tool represents a useful production aid and involves skills applicable to other areas of metalworking in it’s making and discussion.
Stakes are objects used for shaping metal over, on and into. Hammers or mallets are used to form the metal over the shape of the stake. Stakes can be made of various materials. A wooden stump can be considered a kind of a stake. Usually in the West most stakes are steel.
Gravers are small cutting tools used for stone setting, texturing, de-burring and applying decorative embellishments and traditional hand engraving. Steps required to prepare new gravers include mounting, sizing, shaping, sharpening and proper storage. Gravers are among the most useful tools at a jeweler’s bench. Failure to properly prepare and maintain gravers not only presents a hazard, but also affects quality of work, proper technique and time efficiency. Here are some steps for preparing gravers for utilization with hand techniques.
Tim McCreight answers 13 of the questions about stone-setting tools most frequently asked by his metalsmithing students.
This article lists the basic tools someone learning stonesetting might want to have around. One would of course add to this list..
Ask for a catalog with an English supplement. Order by surface if a heavy order as shipping from Germany is very expensive by air. For best speed send them a money order in Deutsch marks with your order and open an account with them as the normal procedure is first send your order, they send you a pro-forma invoice, you send them the money in German Marks and then they finally ship it to you.
Hammers are an essential part of silversmithing and goldsmithing. While one can buy hammers ready made one can also do a lot with home-made versions and adaptations. Ordinary hammer heads may be reshaped providing they have not been cast. Reshaping.
Hoover ‘ Strong, Inc. in Richmond, VA provides a line of Tru-Seat settings that include solitaire earrings, pendants and solitaire rings in yellow, white and palladium white gold alloys. By using Tru-Seat mountings and the system outlined below, jewelers can reduce material costs, labor and improve quality..
When beginning to do tube settings, the first thing anyone should do is buy a “Setters Tube Holder” which appears in many tool supply catalogues. I have two of them for easy access. Expose only the very top of the…
Stonesetters frequently convert and and reuse tools intended for other purposes. Often when a tool is needed they will cast around the bench looking for raw material – and as every setter knows, used burrs abound. There are a number of tools that can be made from such defunct burrs. One of the most useful of such setters tools is a point burnisher.
Tweezers are a constant in a jeweler’s life, particularly in these safety conscious times. Tweezer use can help reduce your contact with nasty dermatitis causing chemicals. For example, when used for handling objects in solutions such as pickle, soap, and cleansers, tweezers limit potential damage to your skin.
Bench jewelers hate to throw out used tools. By training and by nature we try to conserve the materials we use. An unfortunate side effect is that old burs and dull files tend to collect on our benches. All is not lost, however. There is life in those tools yet. A Sneaky Goldsmith Trick with chemicals in your workshop can get them sharp and useful again..
Many tools sold in model/hobby stores can be used for jewelry making. During a recent visit to a hobby shop, I found these tube bending coils, which model makers use to build models that require bent tubing. Jewelry makers will find these coils handy when bending tubing for projects.
Euro Tool, Inc. has developed five wax tool kits and a cordless wax pen for the overall improvement of wax working projects..
Ganoksin is the worlds largest educational internet site for the jewelry, gemology and metals field. We also offer an online orchid community which has emerged from this project. Learn more
Enter your email to receive our occasional newsletter and updates!