Friday 9 October 2009

A couple of repairs

I don't often take on repair work. I've only once needed to repair a piece of jewellery that I've made, and that was because I'd sold the bracelet to a friend of mine who has a habit of catching bracelets on door handles and breaking them. I don't really like repairing jewellery made by other people as a) I can never be completely certain exactly what materials have been used to make the piece, b) repairs can be time consuming and so take time away from the work I really want to do and c) to be blunt it's rarely worth my time doing the work as people generally do not want to pay very much for the work at all and although the repairs rarely require much in the way of new materials they do take a lot of time and my time is money! So I don't advertise that fact that I can repair jewellery, but every now and then I'll repair something that a customer has brought in to a gallery I supply work to or that a friend or colleague needs mending.

T brought the ring in these pictures home from work one day, with a note from a colleague of his asking if I could mend it. As you can hopefully see the 'before' photos the band of the ring had completely snapped. Soldering it back into place and cleaning up the new soldering wasn't actually going to be that big a job, but the first thing that I had to do was remove the turquoise as that would be damaged by the heat from the torch, and that was where the problems started!

The bezel setting was very rough and quite sharp in places, but it wasn't too hard to gently pull open. However, what looked like quite a big stone actually turned out to be a thinner cabochon with some kind of packing behind it (an unfortunately common trick to make stones appear bigger and therefore more expensive) that had just crumbled away to leave a right old mess. So, after repairing the band of the ring I had to clean up the inside of the bezel setting and then file and sand the bezel down so that it fitted the stone properly. The bezel actually ended up looking a lot better than it had originally!

It took a while, but I was actually quite pleased with myself when I had finished and oxidised everything so that it had the same finish as before and I'd reset the stone. I still prefer making my own designs though!

1 comment:

  1. Hi Jo
    Welcome back. You've done a beautiful job on that ring, but it must have taken so much time. Still wish I could come to one of your jewellery classes....


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