Hi folks, sorry if this has already been asked, I did search the archives but couldn't find the answer!
I've just bought Sonia Cheadle's stone setting book, and have a first attempt at a claw setting pickling as we speak, but what I'm most interested in is cutting the little notches for claws and carving bearer shelves for rubovers. I had a look in the Cookie shop, but there's so many, I don't know where to start! I figured that cutting into chenier would require a burr exactly the size of the stone, but what size would I need just for notches and carving?
Thanks, here's hoping for some enlightenment...
Setters vary in what they do, so no doubt the members will differ. The notches in claws can be started with a saw blade just level with the girdle of the stone and completed with a triangular (three square) needle file, or one of the bearer cutters (Cookson 942 series). You need cut less than half way through the prong, but as you can guess some practice on cheaper material is needed to get it right. Small prongs are best made of gold as silver is not strong enough under about 1.5 mm diameter.
Seats for tube setting are best started with round burrs as they are cheaper and vary in width according how deep they are inserted, so they are more versatile. Many setters go no further, but you can then finish with a dedicated burr, which you don’t want to wear out too quickly, used by hand in a pin vice with oil as a lubricant. For faceted stones this would be the stone setting burrs, listed by Cooksons as Bush 413.
When tube setting cabochons, they have a disconcerting habit of turning over half way through, so to resist this they need a flat seat made either with a graver, or a flat ended burr such as Walsh’s FIG412 also by hand with lubricant.
Kind regards, Dennis.
Last edited by Dennis; 30-07-2011 at 05:06 PM.
Hi Mel - "it depends". You can burr into a claw setting with the right size setting burr cutting all the claws at once, you can cut into the claws individually with Hart burr or you can use a 3 square (triangular) file to notch them. The last one is slowest, but gives the most control.
Looking at P47 of Cheadle, she seems to show a round burr being used in the sketch, but the text says a setting burr; I'd probably choose an inverted cone burr for cutting the seat, but later on P52 she does specify a round burr. That said, I'd grab a bullstick scorper first now as a result of Tom's setting course! There's loads of ways to do this - none of them are wrong if they do the job.
Looking further at P52, her description includes using a flat scorper to refine the bearer - here's another area where the careful use of an inverted cone burr can excel, although again, if I've got room to get the tool in I'd be using a flat too.
It's an interesting book; I probably prefer Cogswell myself, but it's useful to have all the references.
Yet again I end up echoing Dennis
Peter and I are playing Box and Cox just now, but I have come back to add my usual rant about callipers. Setters work mainly by eye, but as an eternal amateur, I like to know what I am doing in millimetres, particularly as stones of a nominal size can also vary.
Digital callipers are easy to read and there are often bargains in discount stores such as Aldi and Lidl and also Maplin. I like the smaller 6” ones as they are more comfortable to handle. Some people find them difficult because, rather like kitchen scales, they need to be returned to zero before each use.
Thanks so much, I've got a better idea of what it's all about having read your replies.
Doing a little shopping, in my Cookies basket I have a 2-cut three square needle file with an 80mm wooden handle; a Burr:busch 2 Inverted 1.0mm and a Burr:busch 414 Bearing Cutter 1.2mm. I figured smaller sizes would be better as I do quite small things, using stones around the 10mm or smaller mark and that it's easier to use a small tool in a big space than the other way around! Would these be a good choice, do you think?
What sort of scorper blade/combo would be a good first buy for the enthusiastic amateur? One of those length of string questions, I know...
Thanks also for the advice on calipers, Dennis - I have a lovely set from my days as an engineering sales rep :-)
This is my first attempt at a claw setting, nowhere near good enough to sell, but the stone is IN :-)
Last edited by Melanie De Castro Pugh; 31-07-2011 at 03:19 PM.
I'm not so keen on handles for my needle files and I don't know anyone who uses them. Might I also recommend the rather nice cut 4 needle files from Cookies (976 150) as leaving a better finish for places that aren't going to get a second touch.
Thanks Joe - another epically stupid question, is 2 cut finer than 4 cut? Or vice versa?
Originally Posted by Joe
I have become wary of buying tools except when needed for the specific project in hand, so as to avoid building up a tools graveyard.
Once bought, gravers still need setting up, which means shortening them to suit your hand, fitting a handle, grinding away part of the working end and then sharpening them. This was described by James Miller (Goldsmith) here : http://www.cooksongold.com/forum/nee...-settings.html.
Coming to the test piece in your picture, it is best if the wire next to the stone is flat which means D-shaped wire, but it could also be round wire slightly squashed ( with pliers, in a press, a mill, or between two steel blocks in a vice) you could also use square wire, or even triangular wire.
Lastly, If Joe has not replied by the time I submit this, re your needle file question: the higher the number the finer.
Ah, Dennis' words are wise.
But you need to find a way of trying out a graver to see if it suits you. If you don't know anyone or anywhere you can borrow one but have £15 burning a hole in your pocket, you might try a no 8 round scorper shoved hard into a wooden handle, without too much fuss about proper set-up or sharpening. I reach for mine as often as I reach for a file to clean-up solder, cut grooves, raise setting grains, draw lines or texture. It is not the tool for bright-cutting or most setting tasks, but it is easier to use than those tools and, I suggest, a good tool to try. These tools respond well to more skill and dexterity than I posses, but can still be useful in hamfists like mine.
If, on the other hand, you can think of something else to spend that £15 on, then leave it on your wishlist and make a mental note to try one when next you visit a workshop.