Tool Time Tuesday – Bezel Setting Punches

This weeks Tool Time Tuesday goes along with the past few, Tube Cutting Jig and the Miter Cutting Jig . This week I will demonstrate a set of tools called Bezel Setting Punches. I like to use these when I am doing tube settings on round stones.

There are a number of sets that can be purchased and just like any other tool, there is a wide range in prices. The set I have is an economy set, but still runs about $50 for the 18 piece set. I do have one of these here if anyone is interested in buying it. If you are, just let me know.

1_bezelpunch

Here you will see that I have completed the construction of my pendant and all the clean up work before setting any stones. When I do a tube set stone, I use thick walled tubing. Then I take a setting bur that is roughly the same diameter as my stone and cut a seat into the end of the tubing. Here I am using a 6mm cz. The tubing is 6.5mm OD.

2_bezelpunch

The stone should sit so the girdle of the stone is below the upper edge of the tubing. You don’t want to go too low or your tubing will cover too much of the stone when you push the outer edges over to hold it into place.

3_bezelpunch

The set of setting punches I have come in this nice little box. It makes it easy to keep everything together and I don’t have to go hunting for tools.

4_bezelpunch

I am not even sure how small t he smallest is as I don’t have stones that small. I do use the smaller punches for adding texture to my metal. This set has 18 punches, the largest of them is 6mm which is perfect for my stone. I don’t typically tube set stones larger than 6mm anyway.

5_bezelpunch

Here you see the setting punch and the handle.

6_bezelpunch

Just insert the setting punch and tighten the collet and we are ready to go.

7-Bezelpunch

The inside of each punch is concave so it won’t hurt your stone when it comes down and presses the tubing wall over the edges of the stone.

8_bezelpunch

Place your punch so that it sits straight up and down over your tubing. The straight part is VERY important because you want to come down evenly when setting the stone.

9_Bezelpunch

Using a rawhide mallet, gently tap to fold the edges of the tubing down. You don’t need to do this with much force.

11Bezelpunch

If necessary, use your bezel pusher to touch up any areas that may need to be straightened out or didn’t go down quite evenly with the punch. This might be necessary if you have a portion of your tubing wall that is slightly thicker than other ares of the wall.

12_bezelpunch

Being careful not to nick your back plate, run the tip of the burnisher around the top edge of your tubing to give it a nice high polish. You can also use the punch for this. Just place the punch back onto the tube, hold it firmly against the stone and twist.
13_Bezelpunch

The finished result is a beautiful tube set stone. This is an alternative to making a bezel for smaller stones.

The bezel setting punches can also be used to set prongs on round stones. You would follow the exact same process as above. Be sure not to hit your punch too hard with the hammer  so as to not distort the prongs.

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16 thoughts on “Tool Time Tuesday – Bezel Setting Punches

  1. Lotta

    Hi Melissa, would this work for round cabs as well? I’m new with stone setting had have some 4mm cabs and matching bezel cups, but I find them too small to set with just the bezel pusher. What would you recommend?

    Reply
  2. Melissa Muir

    Lotta,

    Yes, those will work with round cabs as well. You just want to make certain that your stones aren’t too high for the inside of the tool. But I use them for this.

    Melissa

    Reply
  3. Dominique

    Hi Melissa, what an excellent educative post this was, thanx, I learned heaps. Your photos were extra helpful 🙂

    Reply
  4. Rio

    Great tutorial!!! I’m interested in trying something like this, except I want to set a bezeled(tube-set) stone into a shell. Would I use some kind of adhesive to set it in place? Also, I’m interested in finding out if I want to set a bezeled stone into a shell, would I leave the bottom end of the tube open-ended, or do I solder a base onto it?

    Reply
  5. Melissa Muir

    Hi Rio.

    To tell you honestly, I am not entirely sure how people secure the set stones into other types of stones or shells. That is one thing I would love to learn how to do but have not done so yet. So I am sorry that i am not able to answer that particular question for you. If I do find out how to do it, I will try to pass the information along. Let me know if you find something out.

    Melissa

    Reply
  6. Adrienne

    A two-part epoxy is probably your best bet for gluing. You’d have to apply it with a tooth-pick for accuracy though. You probably would be wasting silver if you backed the tube setting, in my opinion. Hope some of that helps 🙂

    Reply
  7. Jasmine Ottosson

    I would to buy one bezel setting punches
    but i am living in Sweden. Can you send me one set? what will the PandP bee. Can you count on how much please. We
    dont have such of these set.
    Please, please help me with this.
    I am waiting for your answer.
    Jasmine

    Reply
  8. carol

    hello,
    thank you for this tutorial.
    i’ m new to this tube setting skill, and would like to know what size of punch i should use if my stone is 3mm?
    thank you.

    Reply

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