Monday, 3:30 pm
What do wax, white gold and yellow gold have in common? Why, the jeweler’s bench, of course.
Lost wax casting is a method that is used frequently in jewelry making. It consists in carving the desired shape for say, a ring, into a piece of specially formulated wax in much the same way as the sculptor reveals the intricate details of a figure by chiseling away at the stone until the envisioned shape and design appear.
For the jeweler, this process is called “lost wax carving.” We talked about this in a previous article and will surely have plenty of occasions to discuss it again. At that time, Silvio explained, “The wax I use is a special mixture of beeswax and mineral oil. The mineral oil gives the wax the proper strength so it can be carved using a whole range of different carving tools, including a drill. It has a consistency that is similar to plastic.”
Recently, a client brought him a 14 karat white gold channel-set ring. As you can see from the photograph, the particular design of this elegant band is the inspiration for its name. 10 diamonds are nestled within the channel. Silvio’s goal, in this particular instance, is to make a replica of the ring in yellow gold. In order to accomplish this, he must first create a wax “clone” to be cast so that yellow gold may then be used to produce a twin.
“Have I ever told you about other methods of casting?’ asks Silvio, as he positions wax and ring on the bench to take a picture. “How about slingshot casting? We need to talk about this in one of our next articles!”
See the completed ring: Silvio’s Workbench – Transformation
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