Cuff Bracelet

Cuff Bracelet

I’m here with Mark Nelson and today we’ve been talking about crystals and you may not realize it but crystals have metal has crystals in the molecular structure and we’re going to tell us about that exactly it’s really great because the metal is made up of crystals and they have grain boundaries okay and let’s see if you want to make a bracelet and you start off with a piece of sheet metal it’s gonna be very stiff okay so you won’t be able to form it much right so you need to soften it up and break those boundaries between the crystals and in the structure exactly and what we’re gonna do is actually anneal it is it called the process okay and if I can show you in the chart here we start off with a piece of soft metal the crystals are large okay with few few grain boundaries okay but when you hit it with a hammer and you work harden it those get crushed and smaller and we talk about work hardening a lot but I think we probably don’t spend as much time talking about annealing so it’s good to know both ends of the spectrum you shouldn’t know both into the spectrum so cuz if you want to do more working with the metal you have to soften it and keep on going okay so I’m gonna show you how to do that alright what I have here is a piece of bracelet blank mm-hmm and I need to coat it with a barrier flux keep it from oxidizing okay so this is a flux it’s going to protect the metal from getting black and you just cover the whole thing front and back and you can just with a copper brass nickel okay use any width of sheet right then you with what you want your bracelet sure like sure and I safety glasses on so I’m gonna let my torch here all right safety first now the key thing is that we needle to heat this metal for a brief amount of time um at 1,100 degrees and that’s going to anneal it that’ll make it the grain the crystals grow and get softer okay so one of the ways I’m going to judge the temperature is use a different flux I’m just a blob here and that will when this gets clear mm-hmm it’ll tell me that um it’s the right temperature so that’s kind of like your oven thermometer exactly the other way we have to tell is um guess if it gets a dull red in color but though yeah when it gets a dull red for the problem with that is you know when you’re working your student you might have a lot of light oh so the color may not be totally apparent exactly so dull red might actually be twelve thirteen hundred degrees for me too much and what is your work surface there let’s take you’re working on the block working on a block is and he reflected block okay and it’s not absorbing any kind of heat so we keep those right back into the metal as you can see that flux is starting to turn clear right so once it turns clear you want to hold that tension strip a little bit you know maybe thirty Seconds almost a minute giving those crystals time to grow okay now is that flux going to disappear them you betcha um what you want to do is go ahead and before it cools too much quench it in water now this is gonna make a little sound oh wow okay and you can see all the flux and oxidation on here and what we’ll do is we’ll put this in the pickle okay and this is our mild yeah this is a mild acid solution and if they don’t fit you do like half and then turn it over mm-hmm like a turkey mm-hmm okay and then uh so we’ll let that sit and let let that pickle clean all that stuff off okay okay now what we’re gonna do is we’ll come back to a piece that’s here it’s been soften and annealed I’ll go ahead and start building bending that okay oh wow so you can bend it with your hands exactly now it and it would be this soft until you harden it until we start mashing those crispo’s you’ve changed it at the base of its structure exactly so I’m gonna get my base that m’angil out and can you hand me that deadblow hammer over there that’s house nylon ends that’s right it’s um got sand in there oh so it makes it really nice and a nice thing about annealing is you can actually start doing this by just wrapping it with your fingers so you’re using some muscle they’re not hardly not really yeah it’s very soft um now depending on your metal that you know if this was brass or nickel mm-hmm it would be much harder to do now could you soften it too much I’m not really I mean because it’s only gonna go to a certain amount of softness before melts okay okay so there’s kind of a set limit there so then you just use your hammer to find the size exactly you’re gonna I guess judge it yeah and the technical term it is now and you just keep forming it until you get to the bracelet that you want and let’s see you can start bending it by hand mm-hmm okay now this gets really hard I can’t move it anymore you go back and repeat the process oh so you could actually soften any lit again mm-hmm you can do this hundreds of times he’s working it hundreds of times and that’s how people just keep working it and bracelets are odd because they have to be an oval mm-hmm that’s what you want to do is kind of use the side of the mandrel keep working to shape exactly until it’s just right for your wrist or your your customers dress so is this something that you could do with a finish bracelet if you had a finish bracelet that came out of shape or something could you go back and sort of fix it depends um you certainly could if there’s no stones in there or anything that cannot take the heat okay so I would have to all be metal I’ll be metal straight metal and you can certainly go back and Riaan a litte reshape it and because as you work hardening it and you’re working at your hardening it right you have to anneal at first now what about the edges yeah I just you know just like you’re gonna make a bracelet you can file them sand em treat this however you want to sand it um they’re just okay well let’s take a look at your finished bracelets because you have some beautiful samples here and these are all using that same basic forming technique forming technique and in you and kneeling okay and this one is of course amazing thank you how’s your crystals on the front there and it looks like you just used a couple of different techniques I did had to do some different things like make folds versus to accommodate the crystals well that is just a beautiful way to bring the crystals and the metal together thank you thank you very much mark and thank you again for watching please join us next time as we explore lots of different elements and will feature texture and don’t forget to visit the website to let us know your ideas for future episodes we’ll see you soon instructions for today’s projects plus more ideas techniques and projects can be found on the web at beads baubles and jewels calm this is show 1409


  1. Thanks for the quick response. And now that you describe it, I can see it.
    It would be good to see exactly how you went about soldering the tabs, getting them aligned correctly and evenly spaced, and soldering what appears to be a rather large area for each. I don't suppose there is a video showing that?

  2. I really appreciate your response.

    (I am trying to teach myself jewelry making and I find that every thing I learn opens the door to new questions.)

    Thanks again

  3. Very helpful video in learning how to make a cuff bracelet! Helped me in understanding many aspects! What metal sheet guage do your recommend for this bracelet, do you have videos that show soldering half round wire to make a cabochon stone cuff? Thank you!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.