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Thread: Bails, etc.

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
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    Default Bails, etc.

    Hello all, I've been away for quite some time but have been gearing up to get back at it again! I moved to a different house just after Christmas last year and it has taken too long to get my workshop back together again, I don't have the same amount of space I had before so it's been a challenge to say the least. But I'm going to work with what I've got and get going, it's been way too long and I'm itching to get creative.

    I just had a quick question for a project I've just begun. I am making pendants and giving thought to the bails. (For some reason the bail has been one of my biggest quandaries in jewellery making....) I am able to make my own jump rings and solder them closed, but I'm hoping to figure out a way that still looks decent that doesn't require soldering. It would speed up my project immensely and eliminate that one extra possibility of things going wrong at the last step.

    I believe some people just use a thicker wire to create their jump rings if they don't want to solder it, does that work out pretty well? I see there are other sorts of ready-made bails, like snap on or clip on, etc. Does anyone have a favourite non-solder bail method they like to use?

  2. #2
    Join Date
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    Hi Sandra, Good to see you back. The trouble with ready made bails is that they don't complement hand made work and tend to look tacky.

    If you use only unsoldered jump rings, the resistance to opening depends partly on the thickness of the wire and partly on the size of the ring. So a 3.0 mm jump ring made from 1.0mm round wire will be very resistant. A 6.0mm jump ring made from the same wire, much less so.

    If you wish to go this route all you can do is make an informed guess. Dennis.

  3. #3
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    I think a well made bail can elevate a piece of jewellery to something really special. As Dennis says you can use a ready made one, but then it looks like you have used a bought in bail; the easy option.

    Your work deserves to be complimented either by a bail you have made, whether its sheet or wire, or something that says 'you'. Have you got the Oppi Untract book, there's loads of bail ideas in there?
    Jules

  4. #4
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    Thanks Dennis and Jules, I wouldn't want to be tacky so will probably just use a heavy gauge wire for this project. I do not have the Oppi Untract book, sounds like I better check into it!

  5. #5
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    I was searching the forum for bail ideas and came across this old post of mine I’d forgotten about - some things just haven’t changed as bails are still a challenge for me! I was just looking for the Oppi Untract book online mentioned here and it’s quite expensive but I may order it anyway - unless anyone has other advice seeing as this post is now 4 years old??

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Apr 2016
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    I'm thinking about making bails too so popped online to google the book, and realise it's the one I had to buy as part of my jewellery degree back in 1984. Good times! Has it been updated?

  7. #7
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    Hi Susie, I don’t know if it’s been updated! When searching for the book I read that Oppi Untract has since died. Does it have good bail-making information? It costs about £50 so I’ve been debating on whether to order it.

  8. #8
    Join Date
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    They are awful heavy tomes Sandra, impressive on a bookshelf, but rarely opened.
    If you want ideas on bails, you can find thousands of images on line, modern, or antique, or specifically art deco.
    That said, for me pendants should be the star, and bails unobtrusive. Dennis.Click image for larger version. 

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  9. #9
    Join Date
    Apr 2016
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    You are right Dennis. Itís a giant beast. And it only has details of bails for stones.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
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    Oh thank you both - you’ve saved me from spending £50! I have subscription to ‘At the Bench’ and just noticed today he has some videos on bail-making with some good & practical advice.

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