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Setting up a Workshop for Bench Jewellery Making

Basic Tools for Beading

To start of making beaded jewellery, you only need a few fairly inexpensive tools, the most essential tools you will need to start beading are:

Side Cutters – For all purpose wire snipping.

Round Nose Pliers – For bending/shaping wire, and making loops.

Chain Nose Pliers – Non-serrated - Most pliers for jewellery making are smooth not serrated which can mark your wire.   Chain and Flat Pliers are both used for gripping/holding your piece whilst you are working. Chain Nose Pliers are finer for getting into smaller places than Flat Nose Pliers.

Flat Nose Pliers – Non-serrated, for holding larger or flatter objects.

Serrated Pliers – Pliers with serrated teeth are useful for gripping ends of wire if you need to pull it through a drawplate.

Other essentials:

Bead Mat &/or Board – A Bead Mat is a very inexpensive and useful item to have for making beaded jewellery. They are made of a special fibre which stops beads from rolling all over the place, they provide a comfortable surface upon which to work, and by setting your Bead Mat on a Tray, you can sit and work in the comfort of your favourite armchair!

 A Bead Board comes in different materials, sizes and shapes, it is used to help plan, measure and lay-out your beaded design before you start assembling your work, because they are usually rigid, you can leave your unfinished project in place and simply store the Bead Board safely away in a drawer.

Tweezers – for picking up small objects, knotting and other uses.

Glue – a favourite is GS-Hypo Cement, use to glue crystals, and also apply to knots for extra security.

Hammer – A general purpose Ball Pein can be used for basic wire flattening and metal shaping.

Setting up a Workshop for Bench Jewellery Making
Basic Tools

Most of the basic tools used for Beading above also make good essentials for Bench Work.

In addition to some of the above tools, you will need:

Piercing Saw and Blades – Some good sizes to start with are 1, 1/0, 2/0.

Needle Files – Used for filing away solder, shaping and levelling. They come in various shapes and sizes including, triangular, square, oval, round, semicircle and flat etc.

Small Vice – Bench Vices which are sturdy and good for most general applications; but you can also get Jewellers vices which have a Ball Joint, meaning it can be used at different angles.

Wooden Mallet – as well as an all purpose Ball Pein, a wooden mallet are used to shape metal because they do not mar the surface.

Mandrels - Available in a range of materials and sizes for shaping rings, bracelets or wire.

Other Useful Tools you may wish to add to your Bench Jewellery Tools are:

Anvil or Flat Bench Block – The anvil and bench block are used for flattening and shaping metal, many anvils come with a small hole for riveting.

Doming Block & Punches – Punches are used for “forming work”, often used with a doming block wooden punches will shape without marring, metal punches are harder.

Drawplates – usually steel, the drawplates are used to pull wire into a different shape or gauge. Wooden Drawplates are used to reduce the size of Chain, also useful for pulling Crochet or Viking Weave Wire.

more  info to be added later...

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