Monthly Archives: November 2011

Tool Order and JINX

Well, I must have jinxed it. LOL. We are not moving in 4 weeks after all. It looks like I have closer to 12. So we are still moving, but now I can breathe and relax and not have to do it all so quickly. Of course that would all come about after I have already booked my trip to Vancouver in 3 weeks to do some house hunting. Oh well, guess I will just go and get to know the area a little bit more. Perhaps a February move will have more mild weather than Christmas? Fingers are crossed.

If you have sent me an email in the past couple of days asking about tools and such, chances are, I have it and just haven’t been able to get back to you just quite yet. Things have been busy, especially with the changing schedule and figuring everything out. I am sorry and I will be in touch. Since I am not going as soon as I thought I was this also gives me a little bit more time for this order. I will still be placing it this next week. I was hoping to have it done today, but other things have come up that I had to take care of first. Not only that, but there have been a lot of questions about Tube setting tools and such. So I thought I would take a bit of time to answer them for you now.

I have had a lot of questions about which burs and sizes to buy when it comes to tube setting stones. Here are the tools I use every time I create my tube settings from scratch (or at least from a premade length of tube.)

 

  • Thick walled Tube (outer diameter is .5mm larger than the stone I am using. The wall thickness is approximately .5+mm)
  • Tube Cutting Jig (I currently have 2 in stock – $35.00)
  • Jewelers saw & Blades
  • Miter Cutting Vise (I have 2 in stock – $60.00)
  • Files (flat, cuts 2 & 4)
  • Burs (Setting and round)
  • Calipers (Digital –  I got mine at Harbor Freight)

Choosing the Right Bur

So how do you know which bur to use? You want to use a bur that is just slightly smaller than the diameter of your stone. For instance, if I have a 6mm stone that I am going to set, I would start with a 5.9mm round/ball bur to get the depth of the tube close to where I want it to be. Then I would switch to a 5.9mm setting bur to complete the setting.

The stones I tube set are typically 3, 4, 5 & 6mm. So here is what I use:

  • 3mm  stone
    • 3.5mm outer diameter heavy walled tube (Rio 100452)
    • 2.9mm Round ball bur ($3.40)
    • 2.9mm Setting bur ($4.05)
  • 4mm Stone
    • 4.5mm outer diameter heavy walled tube (Rio 400427)
    • 3.8mm Round ball bur (4.05)
    • 3.8 Setting bur ($4.85)
  • 5mm Stone
    • 5.5mm outer diameter heavy walled tube (Rio 100429)
    • 4.70mm Round Ball Bur ($4.75)
    • 4.70mm Setting Bur ($5.35)
  • 6mm Stone
    • 6.5 mm outer diameter heavy walled tube (Rio 400431)
    • 5.90mm Round Ball Bur ($4.75)
    • 5.9mm Setting Bur ($5.35)

I hope that helps answer the questions regarding the size of burs and tubing. I know that rio also sells tubing for stones 1.5mm – 6.5mm every 1/2 size. If you need help figuring out which tubing and/or bur to buy, just let me know. Again, the email is at the top of the navigation bar for the blog.

Upcoming Classes

I am still working on my schedule, but if you have a day that works for you and you would like to take a class, just drop me a line and let’s work something out.

I am trying to work on a locket project using the hydrualic press. I am trying to figure out how long to make it, but for now, I think it will be a Saturday class that is about 5 hours long. If you are interested in this, please let me know.

Beadtini Boutique

Beadtini Boutique is located in Sawmill Run at
1245 South Cleveland Massillon Road, Copley OH 44321

To Register for classes at this location please call:330-668-4717

Wire Angel

Wednesday, November 30, 2011
10:30 am – 12:30 pm

Thursday, December 1, 2011
6:30 pm – 8:30 pm
Spinner Ring

Saturday, December 17, 2011
10:30 am – 1:30 pm

MOVING!!! This time, I think, for real.

Well, the contract hasn’t been signed, so I hope I am not jinxing things, but he has given notice here in Ohio and the preparations have begun. Dallas is out and I am sad about that, particularly now that the cold weather has settled in and this moves involves my family traveling on I-80 during Christmas Break. That is something I said I would NEVER do again. It is not fun and this time, I will be towing a trailer full of my equipment behind me. YIKES! So prayers for good weather and roads that week would be greatly appreciated.

So where are we going? Well, we are headed way out WEST. We are moving to Vancouver, Washington, just outside of Portland, Oregon. I must say, I think this will be a better fit for me. I was really worried about being in nothing but heat with no mountain or lush landscaping in sight. Our goal is to save every penny we can and buy a place up in the mountains and build my dream home and studio. And the best part of that is, my hubby will still only have about a 30 minute commute. To some people that may be a long time, but it is shorter than he has now, and it is much better than our hour minimum we had when living in the DC area. And if I can live in the landscape I dream of, it will be worth it. I just hope students will feel it is worth it for the drive up to my studio for classes.

I am not sure what I am going to do about classes and making jewelry over the next year while we rent. We aren’t finding any homes that have the space necessary for a studio set up. There are a couple, but the rent is so high that we have decided it is better to save that money and use it as a down payment for my dream studio… er, I mean home. The next couple of weeks, I figured I would document a little bit about packing up the studio. If anyone has some great ideas they would like to share with me, I would greatly appreciate it. Everything in my studio here is NEW, well, not new, but I didn’t have it before we bought this house. So I haven’t ever had to move a studio like mine before. It really is daunting. My husband and I stood in the studio last night and we are both a bit horrified at the task sitting before us. Yes, I have a tool problem. So sad.

Last week I mentioned that i am going to be placing a couple of tool orders. I was hoping to place it tomorrow, but I think it will be more like on Friday (No later than Friday.) This is a great time to get your Christmas Lists out and let me help you get some fun stuff for your studio. I will also be selling some of the tools and equipment from my studio. No, you cannot have my rolling mill, bench shear, hydraulic press, or sand blaster. You can order a hydraulic press through me if you would like. Contact me for details if you are interested.

I figured I would share some of the tools that are being ordered by others. If we get enough of them, I can usually get it for a little better price. I am listing the retail price here on my blog. Depending on the item, I can usually save you about 10% and sometimes 15% or 20%.


When I first saw this dapping set, I was really hesitant to get it. I have a set that “looks” like this that I purchased from Harbor Freight. Well, my HF set is wonky and the punches are not all round. Some of them have a slight point to them. When I was first starting out, they served me well. It was $35 well spent. But these are closer to $70 and I was a bit gun shy. Then one of my students ordered one. I pulled it out when it arrived and looked them over. I was totally impressed that the daps were all rounded beautifully. Now they aren’t as nice as my Pepe set, but they are also about a 1/3 the cost. So this is a really great “middle of the road” tool. If I could fill my shop with nothing but Pepe tools, I would do it in a heartbeat, but since that doesn’t fit my budget, this would be a great alternative.

Retail: $69.95

This is a popular item and I hate when they are out of stock. I checked and they are currently in stock. YAY! These are the setting burnishers I used in my Tube Setting Tutorial. There are 18 punches ranging from 2mm – 6mm. Again, these aren’t the top of the line, but they are a great set of tools that while I could live without them, I wouldn’t want to. They make setting round bezels and tube settings so easy.

I have several people purchasing this set internationally and we will just send it without the little box to help keep shipping down (per their request) so just keep in mind, that might be an option too.

Retail: $51.95

These hollow core diamond coated drill bits are what I use when I need to cut through ceramic, tile, or glass. The set currently on order includes 1.5, 2.0, 2.5, 3.0, 5.0 and 6.5 mm bits. They can also be purchased individually and in more individual sizes.

Retail: $38.95

This little divider is great for scoring my work in preparation to cutting it.

Retail: $5.95

There are also several orders for various burs used in tube setting and such. They can be ordered in any number of sizes and shapes. they typically range in price from $3 – $7.

I can get any number of other tools also including Lindstrom, some GRS, and others. If you have something on your wish list, just let me know. I will do my best to get you the best price on them. If I can’t, I will certainly be happy to let you know where to get the best price.

I don’t mind shipping internationally if I can. Just keep in mind that the cost will be higher due to shipping costs and possible customs stuff. You can decide if you want insurance or not also.

TRONEX.
I am going to be placing a tronex order as well. I can offer you 15% off their prices as well. If you would like to view their tools, just check out my Tool Time Tuesday posts Here and Here. They have also recently come out with a flat nose plier with a skinny head, only 3mm at the tip. I don’t have this pair yet, so I can’t tell you much more than that, but I have heard it is pretty nice.

Here are the prices of some of my favorites:
$44.55 – #711 – Chain Nose Pliers
$44.55 – #721 – Needle Nose Pliers
$44.55 – #731 – Round Nose Pliers
$44.00 – #741 – Flat Nose pliers
$60.50 – #7812 – Heavy Duty Cutter, Flush Edges
$59.95 – #7513 – Large Oval Head, Semi-Relief, Razor Flush Edges
$62.70 – #7223 – Taper Head, Relieved, Razor Flush Edges
$53.90 – #5222 – Taper head, Relieved, Flush Edges

If you are interested in getting anything, just drop me a line. There is a link to my email in the navigation bar at the top of the blog.


Sorry to not have a Tool Time Tuesday, but things happened rather fast and we are getting things ready. I have a shipment coming in from Potter USA that has my new sandbag and I will do a TTT on how to break it in and of course, make you all jealous of my new beautiful leather sand bag.  I am going to try to record as many as I can before we go so that I will have something to post on my blog in the coming months.

I also hope to get some pictures done of some of the pieces I have been working on and a few of my custom orders that have recently been placed. I have got to get to work……. Wish me luck!

Oh, and if you live in the Vancouver, Washington area, I could use some friends. I don’t really know too many people there. I met one online friend when we were there a week and a half ago, but that is about it so far. I don’t bite too hard… I promise.

Tool Time Tuesday – Remove and Prevent Rust on Your Tools

Hey everyone. I hope all is going well. We had a great week in Washington. It is simply beautiful, and that is an understatement. I could certainly live there. And in all reality, in the next week, we will find out if I will be living there. My husband and I had a couple of days where we went house hunting and driving around the area to try to figure out where we wanted to live. This is the fun part of relocating. There were so many things to see. The fall leaves were falling but some were at their brightest peak. All those reds, oranges and yellows nestled among the green of pines and ferns were just breathtaking.

On Saturday as we were driving around I noticed a craft fair going on at a local school. I made my husband stop as I wanted to pick up something for the girls as a souvenir. Of course there were people in there that had jewelry. I was very excited to talk to a few of them. I asked about classes in the area, shops and any kind of groups that there might be. Sad to say, there are only a couple of shops that teach classes. That is actually a good thing for me. But the sad part is that there are no groups to join. I don’t know if I want to start another guild. They are worth the effort, I just don’t know that I have the energy to do it again with my baby and a move and a new place where we know only a few people. We will have to see how I feel in a couple of years.  But I know I will miss the guild that is going so well here in Ohio. They have some really great things coming up this next year. At any rate, we are excited to be making a decision on where to go soon.

 

New Item I can’t wait to add to my studio

When I was in Tucson visiting with Kevin Potter of  Potter USA, I had the opportunity to meet with some of his friends and colleagues. That was such a great trip. On the last day that I spent at his studio I had the opportunity to meet with a gentleman that makes the most beautiful custom saddles for horses. Well, he and Kevin have just released the news that they have created a Silversmith’s forming bag. Here is what they say about it:

“Silversmith’s Forming Bag ($55) is now for sale on my website. It is
made of heavyweight, English bridle leather, 8 inches in diameter, 3
pounds, double-stitched by a professional saddle maker, filled with
clean, fine-grain sand and comes very firm – needs to be broken in.
These are the finest Silversmith’s Forming bags on the market!”

PotterUSA_Sandbag

I cannot wait to get mine. The order has already been placed. I want one just so I can fondle that leather! These bags are really great when doing sinking work and I even use mine to sharpen the edges on some of my pressed pieces with a chasing tool (Another Tool Time Tuesday coming soon.) But this really is a great price on these. You can visit Potter USA and order yours too. (Disclaimer: I do not get paid for this. They didn’t put me up to this. I am just an excited customer waiting for mine to be shipped.)

Tool Time Tuesday Video

Okay, so now to get to what you are really after. The VIDEO!!! I was trying to figure out a topic for today and as I was looking around my studio last night I saw a couple of tools that had a bit of rust on them. I get asked all the time how I prevent rust on my tools (I have very little rust on my tools.) The first thing I do is try to prevent it from ever happening. But Ohio is fairly humid and it can be a big issue. There is a dehumidifier in my studio that I try to run at least once a week if not more. I am always amazed at the amount of water I pour out of that machine after running it for a few hours.

I have employed a couple of means of removing rust but wanted to get some more options. So I posed the question to a few of my metalsmith colleagues. Most of them do what I do, but I did learn about a new product called Nevr-Dull. It was very easy to find in my local Ace store. It was in with all the cleaners. You just pull off some of the material in the can and rub your rusty tool and the rust is removed. Sometimes you do need to use a little elbow grease, but it wasn’t bad. Now, you have to keep in mind that rust is invasive. This will remove the rust, but if it has already invaded the metal, you will have some pitting that still needs to be addressed.

So this week, I created a video showing a couple of methods of removing rust, dealing with the pitted surface and then I talk a little about how to protect your tools with a rust and corrosion retardant.


Upcoming Classes

It really looks like I will be moving in the next 6-8 weeks. So if you have been wanting to take a class with me here in Akron, now is the time to do it. I don’t have much on my schedule and I am very flexible in the hours I can teach. So if you have a request, go ahead and make it and let’s make the class happen.

Right now I have only one formal class on my schedule:
Saturday, November 12, 10:00 am – 1:00 pm $65. We will be making a fold formed anti/synclastic bracelet with the hydraulic press. I have only two spots left in this class. So let me know if you would like to join us.

Tool Orders

I will be placing an order for Tronex Pliers Next Wednesday (Nov 16). The order is going to be a larger one, so I can offer 15% off retail prices. Let me know as soon as possible if you would like to order any of their great pliers. They will make great Christmas Presents!!!

I will be placing my final order of the year with Euro Tools Next Wednesday (Nov 16)also. We have been waiting for a few items that were on back order. They are now in and I am ready to wrap it up. Discounts on any of these items vary as it depends on the tool, but discounts usually run 10-15% there too.