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Thread: Questions! Wirewrap ends and strange beads

  1. #1
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    Default Questions! Wirewrap ends and strange beads

    I made these earrings with some lovely 12mm tigerseye rounds I got from Harrow and 0.8mm brass wire (next time I probably want to make the earwires a bit thinner... they're wearable for me fine but it was a little disconcerting putting them in the first time!).

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    The question's about the second pic - as you can see, when I was wrapping the very end of the wire above the bead, it went flat against the wire being wrapped instead of coiling round it, and because it was so close to the bead I couldn't get my pliers in to push it back up. I've had this problem before, particularly with thicker and stiffer wire - is there a way to avoid it? When I got right to that end I was needing quite a bit of force to bend the wire at all, and it went the wrong way!

    My other question is about these beads I picked up from a stall selling various old and vintage beads. I'm fairly certain they're glass - they look and feel like it, and they have some chips and dents. I've never seen anything quite like them before, but on the other hand I haven't been looking! Anyone know anything about this style of bead?

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  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kalorlo View Post
    I made these earrings with some lovely 12mm tigerseye rounds I got from Harrow and 0.8mm brass wire (next time I probably want to make the earwires a bit thinner... they're wearable for me fine but it was a little disconcerting putting them in the first time!).

    Click image for larger version. 

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ID:	391 Click image for larger version. 

Name:	tigerseye_earringswrap.jpg 
Views:	30 
Size:	30.6 KB 
ID:	392

    The question's about the second pic - as you can see, when I was wrapping the very end of the wire above the bead, it went flat against the wire being wrapped instead of coiling round it, and because it was so close to the bead I couldn't get my pliers in to push it back up. I've had this problem before, particularly with thicker and stiffer wire - is there a way to avoid it? When I got right to that end I was needing quite a bit of force to bend the wire at all, and it went the wrong way!
    To stop the wire gettin away from you you must make sure that you are wrapping straight, keep the base wire horizontal to you and make sure the the piece you are wrapping with is completely vertical at all times. At least thats what i was taught and how i have done all mine. And then when you get the the end bit you can just nip it down with the pliers.

    Hope that will help, i done know much but i have done a lot of wrapping lol
    Su' xx

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  3. #3
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    I'm not sure, Heather, but I think those beads might be Lucite?
    Di x

  4. #4
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    I'm not sure abouthe beads either, Lucite sounds reasonable though!

    With your wrapping, it's important to pull the wire in the direction that you want it to sit as you wrap it. With the earrings in the photo, try twaking the sticky out wire up as much as you can with some chain nose pliers, or failing that file any pointy bits down wit a needle file.
    Lucinda

  5. #5
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    Some vintage Lucite, showing the variations that were available - some of which were incredibly glass-like
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails _wsb_370x355_Luc_grp4web.jpg  
    Di x

  6. #6
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    Ooh, interesting. They feel rather heavy for plastic beads, but I will investigate!

    Lucinda: I'll try prodding them again - I can barely get the nose of my pliers in there, though. I'm fine until I get little short ends that need bending round. At that point they become very difficult to move

  7. #7
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    "The question's about the second pic - as you can see, when I was wrapping the very end of the wire above the bead, it went flat against the wire being wrapped instead of coiling round it, and because it was so close to the bead I couldn't get my pliers in to push it back up. I've had this problem before, particularly with thicker and stiffer wire - is there a way to avoid it? When I got right to that end I was needing quite a bit of force to bend the wire at all, and it went the wrong way! "

    Ah you should have a look at Boo's tutorials, they are excellent on wire wrapping and I have definitely improved from when I first started. Here's her link Boo's Jewellery: wire wrapping

    Good luck and let us know how you get on.

    x
    Jules

  8. #8
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    Heather, try working off the reel rather than with a cut length. Make your wrap and tuck it right down to the bead. I tend to pull slightly away from the bead to make sure the wraps are tight, and only use a couple of turns to stop it from getting 'leggy', or double back for a thicker wrap. The more turns you make, the harder the wire is getting, and the more difficult it is to stay neat. Then get in there with a small pair of flush cutters and trim the end. You should only have a tiny end to tuck in with either snipe or round nosed pliers.

    0.8mm should be fine for earwires, and should be tolerated by most people (as long as they can wear the metal used). Some people go down to 0.7, but they can get a bit fragile as they get thinner.

  9. #9
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    Ta George! I'm thinking possibly I need a smaller pair of better cutters - I was wrapping with a long end for one of these (actually, I think it was the one that went wrong!) but couldn't cut as close as I would like, so still had an end to tuck in.

    I have side cutters, end cutters and memory wire cutters - the first two give quite a sheared end that needs lots of filing so if I'm in the middle of a thick piece of wire I'll use the memory wire cutters to get a nice flat cut, but of course they don't fit close to anything. The end cutters are the worst - they were just cheap ones from a hardware store, so I end up trying to get my side cutters into small places with variable success...

    Re: the beads - I keep reading that Lucite is lightweight, but my beads aren't... it never says what they consider to be lightweight, though!

  10. #10
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    Heather, the quality of my wrapping improved enormously when I treated myself to a decent pair of cutters. I have two good pairs - Lindstrom, which are phenomenally expensive but worth it, and Xuron, which are a little cheaper but still excellent. The Xuron came from the P word, can't remember about the Lindstrom.
    Di x

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