The Process of Making an Outstanding Piece of Jewellery


Step 1: Designing

In order to produce a unique piece, the very initial step is to create a design. This is the point from where the magic begins. It is a stage wherein the designer develops an idea for the design, evaluates the idea and translates it into reality.

Step 2: CAD

CAD software is used to increase the productivity of the designer, improve the quality and dimensional accuracy of design, and create a database for manufacturing. Once a design is conceptualized in the mind of the jewellery designer, it is drawn on paper and then into the system. This process of constructing a design into the system is facilitated through Computer-Aided Designing technology.

Step 3: Rapid Prototype

Once the CAD design file is ready, it is transferred to the 3D Rapid Prototype system. This system works on the principle of Direct Light Projection Technology. The resin model is created using a 3D Rapid Prototyping system (RPT) which is fully functional.

Step 4: Model Making

Resin output from CAM is then converted into a gold model by using the casting process. The gold model is a master design that is copied to make many similar pieces of jewellery. The gold model is used to create the rubber mould from which all subsequent pieces are made.

Step 5: Rubber Mould

Mould making is an integral part of the production process. It helps in creating multiple pieces of jewellery of the same design. These designs remain protected and embedded in the mould forever and it is possible to create replicas of the same in future. There are different types of materials used for mould making like natural rubber, silicone and metal. The method used for mould making is called “Vulcanizing”.

Step 6: Wax Tree

This step involves the production of wax pieces from the rubber moulds made from the silver master. The rubber mould is placed on the commercial wax injector machine. Molten wax is pressure injected into the mould cavity to create wax models for casting.

The process of soldering the wax pieces on a wax stem is called “treeing”. A sprue is attached to each piece which in turn is attached with the stem. The sprue makes an angle of approximately 45 degrees with the stem. The tree is such that the heavier items are at the bottom of the tree and the lighter ones are at the top.

Step 7: Casting

Casting is a very complex process and requires the utmost skilled and experienced casters for the desired final product. The wax tree is placed in a steel flask which is then occupied with a slurry of chemical powder that solidifies in an hour. The flask is then heated in an electric furnace which melts the wax leaving behind a cavity. Molten metal is then poured into the flasks, allowed to cool, then demolished to reveal the jewellery in casting form.

Step 8: Grinding

Once the raw casting is clipped off from the casting tree, it has a tiny nub leftover at a place where the gold piece was attached to the sprue. The polisher grinds off this nub using the motorized grinding machine, which acts as an abrasive to smooth the surface of the gold piece/jewellery. Final polishing is then done by holding the piece against a spinning grinding wheel to achieve a smooth surface.

Step 9: Filing and Assembly

Filing is a technique that helps in removing excess metal or solder from a piece that is being worked on. It is a process wherein the casting layer is removed by using different tools like files and burrs. It gives a smooth finish to the piece. Assembly is the process where two or more components of the same design are joined with the help of solder or laser technique

Step 10: Polishing

Polishing offers a neat finish and enhances the value of a piece. Polishing involves three steps, tumbling, pre-polishing, and ultra-cleaning. Jewellery pieces with diamonds require pre-polishing before the diamond is set. This is because once the diamonds are set the area below the diamond portion cannot be polished and may affect the shine of the diamond.

Step 11: Metal Setting

Stone setting is the art of securely setting or attaching gemstone in the jewellery. Different types of setting are used to create varied designs; sometimes even a combination of two settings is also used to make a piece look more appealing. The different types of settings are prong, plate prong, pave, pressure, bezel, bead, flush, fishtail, invisible, miracle plate and channel.

Step 12: Polishing

This is the final polish of the piece of jewellery. In polishing, the idea is to add shine to the entire piece of jewellery. Polishing is done after the setting of stones and it can be done either by hand or by machine. If the jewellery is hand polished, then the craftsman uses different tools like solid buff, soft buff, hair buff, coin buff, single line ball buff, green rouse for shine, platinum polishing rouse, black lustre for removing casting/filling layers, red rouse to impart shine and white lustre to remove roughness.

Step 13: Rhodium Plating

Rhodium is a sparkling white coloured precious metal. When a piece of jewellery is plated with Rhodium, it gives a white reflective appearance and provides the piece of jewellery with better resistance to scratches and tarnish. It is used on yellow gold for creating visually appealing patterns and designs. The use of Rhodium plating on white gold is meant for adding whiteness to the gold since white gold is not so white in its original and pure form.

Step 14: Quality Control

Quality control (QC) is a procedure or set of procedures intended to ensure that a manufactured product or performed service adheres to a defined set of quality criteria or meets the requirements of the client or customer. There are three different methods of quality control inspection which includes include measurement, visual inspection and mechanical inspection.

The Process of Making an Outstanding Piece of Jewellery The Process of Making an Outstanding Piece of Jewellery Reviewed by Diviano on July 22, 2021 Rating: 5

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