Professional Jeweler Archive: ForedomÕs Stone-Setting & Engraving Micro Motor Kit

February 2003

Professional Bench/Tool Tips


Foredom's Stone-Setting & Engraving Micro Motor Kit

Bill Holman bezel-sets a 2.55-ct. trillion diamond and 0.03-ct. round brilliant diamonds and engraves a platinum ring and matching pendant using the kit


Foredom’s Stone Setting and Engraving Micro Motor kit is mandatory equipment for Bill Holman of Holman Designs, a trade shop in Dallas, TX. The details:

The micro motor hammer handpiece kit is well-suited to a variety of stone-setting and engraving applications requiring reciprocating action. The micro motor delivers from 0 to 5,000 strokes per minute. The handpiece is controlled by dials on the micro motor control box or by a foot pedal (not pictured and may be ordered separately).
The accessories in the kit include: three anvil points (A, two are shown in the photo), two tightening pins (B) and an anvil point holder (C) used to hold anvil points during a reshaping process. The holes (D) indicate where the tightening pins are inserted.
Included are a hex key (A) for use with the graver holder adapter (B) and an adapter (C) for non-threaded shank accessories such as a beading tool. The adapters are easily interchangeable in the handpiece and allow the operator to perform a multitude of operations. Not pictured but included in the kit are a handpiece and accessory holder tray, open-end wrench and extra motor brushes.
The graver holder adapter included in the kit is designed to accept modified gravers or other tools. The selected tool is placed into the adapter and the hex screws are tightened (A). Then the adapter is screwed into the tip of the handpiece (B) and tightened with the supplied open-end wrench.

Here’s a closer look at how Holman used this kit to complete a platinum and diamond ring and matching pendant:

1. He carved the waxes and had them cast in platinum. Notice he carved much of the finished detail into the wax, including preliminary prongs that will become the beads for the side diamonds.
2. Three anvil points come with the kit (additional points can be purchased). Holman is shaping a point to perform the bezel setting. After polishing, he inserts the point into the handpiece.

  

3. Here he uses his new anvil point to bend the bezel over the center diamond. As a result of fashioning the point, it fits securely between the side stones and the bezel. He started in the central part of the bezel on one side and worked toward the corners on each of the three sides. First he partially bent the bezel and then went back around each side of the stone two more times to complete the setting.
  
4. After Holman had mostly finished the center bezel, he began setting the side diamonds. The bearings, relief cuts and prong beads were established in the wax. He reburred the bearings, seated one of the three rows of diamonds and will now use a beading tool inserted into the hammer handpiece to form the beads over the side stones.
5. Holman has one row of side stones completed and will go on to finish the other two rows using the same techniques.

6. In the finishing steps, he uses a small flat bottom graver to engrave a bright angled rim around the side stones on the outside edge of the top.

Holman switched between the micro motor hammer and rotary handpieces using the same micro motor control box to power each. As a last step, he used Foredom’s new platinum polishing compound to provide the final polish.

For questions related to this process, contact him at (972) 702-0606 or bilmarholman@aol.com.

This installment of Tool Tips was sponsored by Foredom, Bethel, CT. For information related to Foredom tools and equipment or for a list of distributors, contact Michael Zagielski at (203) 792-8622 or sales@foredom.com.

Photographs by Mark B. Mann
©2003 Visual Communications

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