Tuesday, February 8, 2011
Making a simple bangle
Ahh..bit more jewellery-as-therapy :)
I've been having fun lately making settings & abstract shapes & bangles - different things to the detailed figurative pieces, so here is a step-by-step of how to make a bangle.if you take a 20cm piece of wire (mine is 5mm round wire) it will make a bangle with about a 60cm diameter. the wire was annealed (softened) when i bought it which makes it easier to bend around the bracelet mandrel with a mallet (& a bit of pushing) but if it's too hard to bend then best to anneal it first.
Neaten the join by running a jeweller's saw between the 2 ends until they meet...& handy to have a large soldering torch nozzle (i've used it more than i thought i would when i bought it)
pop the soldered bangle onto the mandrel & make it round using a raw-hide mallet (you'll have to hit it pretty hard) I hold the mandrel on my lap to do this but i've seen others have it upright on the bench, whatever you find easiest.
i wanted to anneal the bangle so that i could make it a neater round shape. To avoid it looking like a machined piece i textured the outside with hammer marks. Also, beating the bangle with a steel hammer will work-harden the metal & make it better wearing.
The bangle is sitting on a 'wig' made of steel wire - good space for annealing cause it's a solder-free area (my soldering mat isn't as spotless as some :))
Voila! Here is the finished bangle, it's available in the real-life store (not online) & is $250.