Jewelry has always been used as a sign of power, prestige, wealth or class. They were difficult to acquire and expensive. Today they are worn by both women and men. creation of jewelry is carried out serially using machines, not necessarily from expensive decorative materials. The main difference between artificial and noble products is the materials from which they are made and the price, which is many times lower.
What are jewelry made of?
They make jewelry from such metals as:
gold is a soft and elastic metal of a bright yellow color, not prone to corrosion under the influence of moisture. To make gold hard and strong enough, but at the same time not having the desired color, silver, copper, zinc, nickel and palladium are added to it. The most popular is an alloy of gold with palladium, nickel, silver, called «white gold»;
pure silver is not suitable for jewelry. It is too soft, so products made of it will not last long. To increase the hardness of silver, it is alloyed with other metals such as copper. An interesting option is coating with a thin layer of rhodium, thanks to which it does not darken, becomes strong and durable;
platinum belongs to soft metals, so it is easy to process, but it is not durable. A small addition of other metals is enough to significantly improve its strength. Platinum alloys with gold, palladium, iridium, silver and copper are popular. Palladium makes it much brighter. Adding silver and copper improves its mechanical properties;
brass and bronze are typical metal alloys that are extremely fusible. They acquire very interesting colors that make jewelry look older, more expensive and more noble.
What precious stones are used to make jewelry?
Making jewelry to order makes it unique.
Products of this type serve for many years and can be passed down from generation to generation or remain an investment for the future.
Imitation jewels are most often made in large quantities from base metals. After covering with another material, they imitate the appearance of their expensive counterparts.
Equivalents of precious materials from which jewelry is created:
gold — alloys based on base metals, gilding or brass;
silver — alloys based on base metals, silvering or coating with white bronze, steel;
bronze — copper, blackening of brass;
old gold — patinated brass or its coating;
old silver — coating of patinated silver, white bronze or tin;
diamonds — acrylic or glass rhinestones, Swarovski crystals;
emeralds, rubies, sapphires — colored glass;
pearls — acrylic or Czech glass pearls of various shades and colors;
coral, turquoise, amber — painted wax, colored plastic, resins.
How is jewelry made?
Even the most modern machines and computer programs cannot replace the talent of an experienced craftsman. First there is a vision and an idea. The artist creates a preliminary sketch of the decoration on paper. He draws with a pencil the picture that his imagination offers, reflecting on paper the general appearance, forms and motives.
At the design stage, the artist’s vision takes concrete forms. planned:
the number, type, size and shape of endangered stones,
types of fasteners, other functionality.
The modeling process takes place using the latest technologies — automated design, which is called CAD.
The accessory design concept is ready, it is scanned and transferred to the computer screen, and then printed on a 3D printer. The result is the first model — a prototype, which is the basis for making a wax model.
Next, the prototype is placed in a special gypsum or silicone mass. When the form freezes, the product that perfectly reproduces the future jewelry is removed from the inside by the technologist.
The wax model is then manually mounted on a tool that jewelers call a «Christmas tree». This is a plaster matrix that contains several to several dozen pieces of jewelry. It is placed in a special metal sleeve, into which gypsum molding compound is poured.
In the firing process, wax is removed and a casting mold is obtained, into which gold or silver is poured. After the molds have cooled, the plaster is broken and the casting is washed. It turns out a gray and matte Christmas tree. The jewelry is separated from the infusion system and sent to a mechanical polishing machine, and then into the hands of a jeweler who sets the stones.
Although the quality of how gold jewelry is made is checked at every stage of production, nothing can replace the eyes of an expert technologist. He confirms that the jewelry product meets all standards so that it can go on sale and the buyer is satisfied with the purchase.
How are rings made using traditional and modern technologies?
The oldest method of creating rings is rolling them off the tape using profiled rollers followed by soldering. The resulting workpiece is processed and polished. Then the stones are placed and a protective decorative coating is applied.
However, the rings made in this way had a weak point in the form of soldering around the perimeter, which reduced their durability and led to breakage during sizing. When using this method, it was not possible to achieve an ideal shape.
The optimal method of manufacturing rings, especially wedding rings, is seamless technology. In this method, the starting material is a gold pipe, from which a ring is cut, which is necessary for further machining on CNC machines. At the last stage, the stones are framed in a ring and protective and decorative coatings are applied to them.
The main advantage of such rings is that they do not have a perimeter connection. This provides greater strength and a perfectly round shape. Such a product is much easier to increase or decrease in the future without the risk of breaking it if it does not fit the size of the finger.
Few companies manufacture rings using the vacuum casting method due to high labor intensity, a large proportion of manual work, and the need to make molds for any size of individual models. This is also a traditional technology used in the production of gold and silver jewelry. It allows you to use various stone fasteners, make seals, which is impossible with other methods. After casting, the ring is machined to obtain the final shape.
The advantage of this method is the absence of design restrictions. Modern foundry machines provide excellent casting quality of fine-grained gold alloys and thermal strengthening of cast wedding rings. A high proportion of manual processing gives these rings a special character.
Now you know almost everything about jewelry and you will make the right choice when buying it for yourself or as a gift.