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Quick Collet Making Free Tutorial

Quick 4 Wire Prong Collet Making

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Making 4 Prong Collet Free Tutorial

Some instances and designs require a quick and simple wire prong collet for setting round gemstones in. Knowing how to make your own collet stock is an important skill that is necessary in metalmithing. This free tutorial on making this type of wire prong collet is helpful when you under time constraint.

This free jewelry tutorial follows the same format as in the premium pdf jewelry tutorials. This gives you a good insight into the to technical teaching methodology.

Quick Collet Making - Starting with a metal rod

I start with a metal rod that is the same diameter as the stone that I am making the collet for.

Quick Collet Making - divide rod in quadrants

Then I make a cross at the end.

The reason I do this is because it is easy to see if your cross is accurate and if it is, then that means that the circumference is divided into four equal parts.

Also, should the collet require six or eight claws, this is also easier to see from the end.

Quick Collet Making - scribe line around rod

I scribe a line with my dividers all around the rod.

In this case the thickness is 1 mm, but that will vary if the stone is bigger or smaller.

Quick Collet Making - cut small slots in rod

Now I cut a small slot at about 45° on each of the four 'arm' of the cross I scribe at the end.

This is to guide the barrel frazer later.

Quick Collet Making - Saw groove around rod

Then I saw a groove all the way around the rod, using the line that I scribed as a guide.

Quick Collet Making - Make notches with frazer

Then I use a barrel frazer to make a notch for the claws that will be soldered in.

Generally spoken, the notch that the barrel frazer makes should be about half the depth of the frazer itself.

Once all four notches have been made, the 'disk' is cut off completely from the rod.

The top and bottom are then filed and sanded smooth.

Quick Collet Making - Disk cut off and polished with notches

The disk sanded.

Quick Collet Making - Fit wire in notch

In this example, I am using 1 mm wire.

I bend the wire into a U and then fit it on the disk to prepare for soldering.

Quick Collet Making - Solder wires in

Once the first U is soldered in place, the second one is done in the same manner.

Quick Collet Making - Cut off the wires

Here the claws have been trimmed off.

Quick Collet Making - Bend bottom wires together

The bottom claws are bent inwards.

Quick Collet Making - Solder bottom wires together

The claws are then soldered together.

The collet is then sanded down and polished, ready for further use in a piece of jewelry.

Quick Collet Making - Fitted onto a ring

This collet can be sunk into the shank and then shoulders can be added if so desired.

Quick Collet Making - 8 Prong example with flat bottom

Sometimes a design requires that a four claw collet be attached on a flat and thin surface, like for instance on a coin pendant or a flat wedding band

So by way of illustration, I have made another example of a variation on the technique shown above.

Firstly, the bottom claws are trimmed off and filed and sanded smooth.

Note that this time I am making a 8 claw collet.

Quick Collet Making - File flat top ring

Here is a sample ring that I filed a flat top on.

Quick Collet Making - Use binding wire to hold collet on ring

I leave the top curves of the claws.

This prevents the claws from shifting while it is being soldered.

Then, as usual, I use binding wire to hold everything in place during soldering.

Quick Collet Making - Soldered collet on ring and prongs trimmed

Soldered on and the claws are trimmed down.

Also, the hole in the center has been expanded.

Now I set the stone into the collet.

Quick Collet Making - Ring with collet set and polished

Set and polished.

The Basic Prong Stone Setting Tutorial shows how to set a gemstone in a wire prong collet. This Diy Setting Tool is useful when setting individual collets.

Projects with similar Prong / Claw Settings

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Projects with similar Prong / Claw Settings

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