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Everything posted by j_betts

  1. j_betts

    Making chainmail from Tungsten

    My question is how brittle are the rings after you have them? Would the rings shatter if you hit it with a hammer/sword or fell down wearing it?
  2. j_betts

    Cleaning Rings

    If you are looking to remove dirt from the rings a quick trip through soapy water will remove the oil and dirt. Aluminum will also put out a bunch of oxide that will turn your fingers dirty. To take that off you need to use a tumbler.
  3. j_betts

    Aspect Ratio and Reverse Aspect Ration Calculator

    Interesting app, looks good with a nice and easy to use UI. What is the full net access needed for?
  4. Have you thought of doing captive inverted round, and capture the birthstones? You would need to work in small gauge rings, but it would keep with the bead work theme. Shaggy loops with properly colored beads would also follow the theme, and not be considered ogre. Shaggy Loops would also be a compromise between 1-1 chain, and something more interesting.
  5. j_betts

    Selling pieces on Etsy

    Now that is a good reason to look at it from the point of profit, and wages. Thank you for explaining it. A large number of us on the board are self sustaining hobbyists, and never think of things like this. Now, if define profit as cash that is going back into the company to make it "grow" is it important to make a profit on most of your items? I ask to see what people's opinions are so I can use them in my own sales.
  6. j_betts

    Selling pieces on Etsy

    I've never quite understood the "I charge $X to cover a wage I pay myself, and profit. If I don't make a profit I'm not successful" I always worked under the notion that creating the job that was paying you the wage was a form of "profit" and would cover making the job successful. If you are farming the work out to other people then having a non-wage profit becomes important, but when you are making the stuff yourself it seems to be an odd idea. To simplify my thoughts If I sell a piece that I made in an hour for $20, and had $1 in materials I see myself as being paid $19 an hour. I can also look at it as making $10/hr and $9 profit, but the difference moot to me.
  7. j_betts

    Byzantine Ring

    TRL has gold filled rings. That means most of the ring is brass. If you have any brass rings you can "reach for them" and get a good idea of how tough the gold fill would be. Metal strength is a big deal when you are making finger rings. I've popped one myself digging into my pants pocket. The rings I made that piece out of were dead soft copper from the craft store though. Also make sure you get the sizing just right. My wife lost a ring I made her into a freezer at a groccery store. The ring slipped off and into the cracks of the cooling system.
  8. j_betts

    Hackey Sacks

    I sold the hacky sack I made before I finished making it. Was working on it at the Library desk I worked at, and had one of the Librarians ask what it was, and how much I was charging for it. She came back later with the cash. The pattern I've seen that works is a circular expantion till you get to the size you want, then start a second one. Knit the two sides together and it is done. I filled mine with fiber, and was told that was a really good weight with the 18 ga galvy I used for the rings, so using rings for fill may make it too heavy.
  9. j_betts

    tumblers and media

    You are going to get a wide range of answers including "use steel, nothing less does anything." Use your own judgment and work from there. I'll tell you my point of view. I have a cheap hobby store rock tumbler. It works, but not amazingly well. I usually use rice in it for a couple hours. It removes grime, and gives my aluminum rings a nice shine after I've rinsed the dust off of them. The rubber rings I put into it started off a slightly shiny black, and came out matte dark gray. An interesting change, but I don't think I'll do it again. Walnut shell media can be bought at sporting goods stores that cater to people that refill their own ammunition. you can also get it as reptile bedding at many pet stores.
  10. j_betts

    Chain Maille Font Idea?

    Have you thought about "cheating"? What I mean is having half colored rings. It's something we can't do in the real world, but it would work fine for this.
  11. j_betts

    Chain Maille Font Idea?

    I'd keep the number of weaves used to a minimum. If you use a different weave for each letter you get an issue where people are so busy looking at the letter that they can't read what you have typed with the font.
  12. j_betts

    Closure Techique: Compression Rings

    A quick check to see if this is true would be to check Stainless and Copper in the same size ring. If the AR is different they measure finished rings. Copper and Stainless have some of the largest difference in spring back I can think of, so if a difference will exist it should be between those two metals As a side note about the main question in the original post. The kirf in TRL rings is very small. Small enough that I doubt it will change the AR by .01 if at all unless you are making micromail.
  13. j_betts

    Difference between Stainless?

    Although the alloys are the same the hardness could change how easily the rings take a shine. Meaning that softer rings would be easier to get to a level of shine. Both spring and half hard rings will get to the same level if you keep at it long enough, but I have no idea how much of a difference in time it would be.
  14. j_betts

    Sterling Silver Fortune Cookie Pendant

    There is also the silver clay that is silver dust and binder. You roll it out like polymer clay and then take a butane torch to it and you end up with a sterling silver end product.
  15. j_betts

    The right weave for the job

    I think Bornofashes is looking for "I've used [weave] to do XXXX" for ideas of what other people have done. Looking for inspiration, not instruction. For example: Connecting an E4in1 row to an E6in1 will make it curl. Do this on both sides of the E4in1 and you can trap a coin or stone inside the rings.
  16. j_betts

    The right weave for the job

    Most of my projects start with "I want to work with XXXX weave, what can I make with it?" so I'll agree with the crowd. There are some applications where a weave won't work. Making JPL trim isn't going to work due to how tight the weave needs to be to work, but lots of other weaves work fine.
  17. j_betts

    Dice bag Question.

    When I make bags I use 18g rings with an AR of about 4, so about 3/16". I use a circular expansion to make the bottom now, but I've also just folded the belt stock and knitted the sides together. With the fold over you get one ugly link where the bottom of the weave doesn't work properly. Dice are usually large enough that it doesn't matter, but I'm a perfectionist when it comes to that sort of thing. I sold my bags for $20, but that was when I was young and thought that turning $1.50 worth of wire into $20 was awesome. It was a couple of hours of time, but I did it in bits between classes. Now I would want between $10 and $20 an hour for my time unless it was a friend asking me to make it.
  18. j_betts

    Chainmail from Arnold's Conan the Barbarian?

    They do sell stamped rings, but not that large. Look under rings, there is a section of welded and stamped rings there.
  19. j_betts

    A question about copper and two ideas

    Copper of any hardness is still very soft. People suggest it due to it's availability and it's price. Go to any craft store and you will find enameled copper wire for sale for a few dollars a coil. I'd also suggest bright aluminum if you are practicing for precious metals. It is stronger than copper, but not really hard to work. The price of it is also low next to silver or titanium. I think the reason nobody uses wood tools is price, availability and durability. The level of craftsmanship needed to make a pair of pliers out of wood is not something you see every day. I'd assume that anyone skilled enough to do this will charge a major premium for their time. Due to that I've never seen them. I ran a quick scan of the net when you mentioned this and all I found were some very rough attempts. Lastly, I'm unsure that wood would weather the amount of use that many people here put their pliers through. I've heard stories of people that are known on sight in their local Sears because of the number of times they have returned craftsman pliers for their lifetime warranty.
  20. j_betts

    Terminology Question

    I just finished making a CIR wallet chain, and what I did was I all but folded the third ring down, and catch it with an open ring that went through the other two. I'll put up a picture of this when I get home. EDIT: Here is the picture I talked about.
  21. I'd say you are pricing yourself very low. $50 for 8 hours of work is below minimum wage never mind your materials. I'd put it at $100 at least.
  22. j_betts

    Scale mail mantle, what will I need?

    TRL's scalemail supplies page has the sizes of rings, and tells you about the option to use either butted or split rings. If you use split rings you may want a pair of special pliers that are also shown on that page. After looking at that do a search on this forum for Paladin and Scales/scalemail. He has produced some very nice tutorials on how to make scalemail.
  23. j_betts

    Getting Started again.

    I would say that the first thing you want is 2 pairs of really good pliers. For jewelry you want ones with no teeth, and are comfortable in your hands. After those two points everything else is up to personal preference. For rings I'd buy them to begin with. You may want to start cutting them later, but nothing kills interest in a hobby faster than a ton of prep before actually getting into the thing. I like Aluminum for how easy it is to work with, and it is fairly cheap. Many people remark about how light the items I make out of it as well. You can then get into colors easily with anodized aluminum fairly easily if you want to go that route. Stainless steel has it's own following, and many people will like the heft of a chunky piece made out of it. Stainless is harder to work, so make sure your pliers are up for it. For sizes I'd go with 16 gauge to 20 gauge to start off. Much bigger and the jewelery pieces get really chunky, much smaller and most people need a magnifying glass to see what they are doing. Look at aspect ratio needed for the weave you need and get rings in that size. For E 4in1 an AR of 4 is nice, so 16 g 1/4", 18 g 3/16", and 20 g 1/8" would work well for example.
  24. j_betts

    Advice for a small project

    18 ga. 1/4" works, but is really tight. I was building a 2 captive chain in that size, and it turned into a bar. There was ZERO flex in it.
  25. I found this post on anodizing aluminum today and thought that a number of people around here might be interested. I've always been a bit a bit leery of anodizing due to the number of dangers in doing it. This article shows you how to use sodium bisulfate instead of sulfuric acid, and it uses only 6 volts DC. Still not something you want to stick your hand into, but much safer than hooking a car battery to stuff soaking in battery acid. http://www.observati...ttery-acid.html