Sunday, February 7, 2016

Those Stones Are Getting Set

As I prepared for my display of paintings at
Wallingford Community Arts Center,
I also kept busy at my workbench determined to get the pesky jasper stone set in my make-it-up-as-I-move-foward bezel.
Picking up from where I left off....
two additional sterling tabs were soldered onto the back of the etched base.
I had the great idea to solder two sterling, oval shaped links that I had previously made which would provide a way to link an eventual chain.

That's when my soldering problems began.

Compared to the other parts of my assemblage, the links were pretty fragile.
Meltage happend.
Melting a part of your piece is never good and can lead to sighing and sadness.
After a couple of failed attempts, I said, 
"Forget it."
Actually, I said something else, but I don't think it's wise to reveal that.
My attempts to remove the failed links left a bit of a ghost.
I decided to accept the ghost partly because it tells part of the story of how the piece was made,
but mostly because I didn't want to risk making the solder of the tabs flow again.

I still had a couple of segments from the sterling braclet that had been used for the tabs and decided to shape them into loops that could be riveted to the base.
Sterling rivets were made with 14 gauge wire.
With all the necessary metal in place, I could finally set the jasper.
The sterling tabs were cut back to reveal as much of the jasper as possible while still concealing the pre-drilled hole.
After a treatment with liver of sulfur, my new pendant is ready to become a necklace.

Other efforts to set stones continue.
Wanting a stash of material to use as a base for future bezels,
I etched pieces of 16 gauge nickel and copper.
The thickness will help me to avoid any warping as heat is applied during soldering.

Sections were cut...
filed and sanded.
Sterling bezels were soldered into place...
two beautiful labradorite cabochons 
and one yellow cabochon of unknown pedigree
were set in place,
also ready to become necklaces.


  1. What is the metal used for the labradorite charms?

    1. I meant to ask what type of metal is the base of the labradite bezel?

  2. This comment has been removed by the author.

  3. I used some of the nickel that I had etched.