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Monday, March 4, 2013

Fold Forming a Star and Shield Pendant

The small shield shaped cabochon was made last year and surfaced in my bench this weekend. I decided to make a fold formed base to hold the cab. First step is to trace around the cab with a sharpie onto the background metal.

I love the balance of the six pointed star and so chose this as my form to fold. Using a straight edge to trace parallel lines on either side of the center is the first step. Even though I started symmetrical you will see how it is easy to get somewhat different results during the bending.

I folded this first bend over the edge of my bench block and then folded it flat and confirmed the fold by hammering along the fold. This work hardens the line so it will show up on the face of the piece later.

You can see how the very edge was hammered tight and in order to make the next fold a flat metal chisel is forced into the fold to help open it up.

The second parallel fold is hammered then the piece is annealed with a torch to soften the metal to make unfolding possible.

The two folds are lined up fine and it is time to bend the other four folds,two at a time. I put the square edge into my vise up to the line and pound over the metal and beat along the seam to harden or confirm the line fold.

This is the result after annealing and before fully flattening the metal. One more time it is to be folded diagonally this time and the same process to confirm, anneal and unfold.

Here the cab is positioned to show the piece still fits. within the design.

I then cut out the star shape leaving the folds as the edge. I used the jewelers saw for this.

Because i wanted to continue the riveted theme from the center piece onto the star, I traced the points of the star to cut out contrasting metals that matched the cab.

The triangle pieces were riveted to the metal one at a time after cutting them from the sheet with shears.

This shows the pieces in place. I used E-6000 glue to hold the points in place for punching the holes and riveting.

I wanted to attach the cab to the center with a dog ear finding. So it was traced onto copper sheet and cut out.

The jewelers saw makes quick work of cutting out the shape.

Here the cup is riveted into place. The piece was then polished,sanded and buffed to give texture and surface detail. And the cab was placed in the center and the tabs folded over to hold it.

Here is the completed piece.  https://www.etsy.com/listing/125377924/hand-crafted-mixed-metal-pendant-star    It is for sale at my etsy shop Oscarcrow.

4 comments:

  1. That is awesome work. I love the detailed instructions and the pictures.

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  2. Thank you for completing these directions and sharing!!!!

    I'm working on fold forming now. I like how you showed how to mark the metal. There are a few ideas for me that I would have stopped at and made into jewelry. I'm learning a lot in fold forming and this really helped.

    Was the copper 24 gauge? Or____? What about the triangle metal pieces? Were they already colored? What gauge were they? Can you share where you purchased the colored metal, or did you color them yourself.

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  3. the metals are all about 1mm in thickness and were obtained at hobby shops or lumber yards the bronz,copper and aluminum are all natural color.

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  4. Great tutorial, great pictures and instructions. You have such a wonderful sense of play and discovery. Your creativity is obvious in your pieces. Thank you for sharing. Very generous.

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