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March 24, 2019, 05:20:20 pm
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Purple Cow Jasper necklace pendants

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Author Topic: Purple Cow Jasper necklace pendants  (Read 526 times)
Michael S Hoover - Redrummd
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« on: December 19, 2015, 11:48:30 pm »

This is more about sharing the photos of the Purple Cow Jasper we found in McDermitt Oregon and a minor tutorial on low cost jewelry artworks. 

I did three test necklace pedants today to see how it works for drilled low cost pendants.  The holes are drilled for cord up to 2.MM and to fit a variety of chains by elongating the hole I drill through.  I use a 1 mm bit for the pilot hole and a bit of expansion and then a 2mm bit for the elongated hole.  I then go back to the 1mm bit to taper the top of the hole a bit for a chain to slide easily.  The final touch is using a 4mm ball bit to taper the entire hole for a smoother transition from the hole to the polished sides.

Both the front and back are polished  and the necklaces are on 1.3mm German leather (brown) or Greek Leather cord (black).

For maximum speed, all of the work is freehand including drilling of the holes for cord.  I do a rough polish of the inside of the drilled holes with a waxed piece of string.  I tie the string to a rod and run the polished pendant with a fair amount of pressure up and down the cord for a couple of minutes and get a nice looking hole.

It takes just about an hour from start of the cutting to finishing the polishing of the drilled hole and another 10 minutes for the ID cards and photos.

Total costs in wear of equipment, diamond bits, leather cord, ID card, gift bag and plastic bag for storage is about $4.  The stone is leftovers from knife slabs so the stone cost is zero.

I can sell these for $30. and after paying sales taxes locally or Ebay fees, mailing and mailing costs I make between $15. and $20. an hour for the time I spend on these.







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Michael S Hoover - Redrummd
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« Reply #1 on: December 19, 2015, 11:50:10 pm »

Here are photos with the ID cards and a quarter for scale.



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Michael S Hoover - Redrummd
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« Reply #2 on: December 20, 2015, 12:07:59 am »

For those wondering how I can do this in an hour -

1) pencil rough shape onto the piece.
2) Use a diamond bandsaw to cut the piece.
3) Use a 60 grit sintered wheel to rough shape the piece.
4) use 320 grit Eastwind diamond belt to get close to final shape and all grinder marks out.
6) 600 grit NOVA wheel to get out the 320 grit marks and do the final shape.
7) Drill 1mm pilot hole, 2mm elongated hole, 4 mm ball bit taper of the hole.
8) touch up any miscellaneous scratches or poor curves I see in the close inspection I do as part of the drilling.
9)1200 grit NOVA wheel sanding with minimal water use - semi scuff polishing with ultra fast movement to ensure no heat or scuff damage.
10) 3000 grit NOVA wheel polishing with minimal water.
11) 8000 grit NOVA wheel polishing.
12) 14000 grit NOVA wheel polishing.
13) ZAM final polish with ultra light pressure - more of a light dusting.
14) Polishing of the drilled hole with the waxed string.

I have a lot of equipment so I literally move from left to right in the shop from 60 grit grinder to 14000 grit polishing.
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wyrock
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« Reply #3 on: December 20, 2015, 12:16:22 am »

Gorgeous pendants. Personally I like these better than the knives.
Jim
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Michael S Hoover - Redrummd
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« Reply #4 on: December 20, 2015, 12:20:58 am »

Way too much competition in Jewelry to really make much especially if I had to pay for the stone.
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55fossil
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« Reply #5 on: December 20, 2015, 08:12:21 am »

         Custom is where the money is at in jewelry and cabochons. High quality and made by hand. But those $30 pieces sell like hot cakes at the shows and usually pay off all the fees and space charges. This is more proof I need to start selling some drilled cabochons as they are popular.  nice job Mike. A lot of pretty for $30.
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wyrock
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« Reply #6 on: December 20, 2015, 08:15:26 am »

Very true especially for someone like me that is a crappy salesman. I hate it so most of my stuff is given away or stuck away in boxes so the kids and grand kids can fight over them.

Knives I do not make. I do not have your skills or your tools and I have no desire to make things that have to be that precise. With a knife you can not say "ah, that's good enough" and get away with it.
Jim
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Talusman
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« Reply #7 on: December 20, 2015, 08:37:05 am »

Hi Michael,

These are beautiful. Would you share your source/type of bits used to drill the holes?

Thanks!

-Jeremy
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Michael S Hoover - Redrummd
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« Reply #8 on: December 20, 2015, 09:24:53 am »

I use the cheap plated 1m, 2mm and 3mm bits sold on Ebay and Amazon for about $9.00 for 30 of them.  I run them at 14,000 RMP and keep a aluminum oxide dressing stick next to where I am drilling to occasionally "clean" the bits.  When the tip is worn smooth I toss the bit. 

Some of the bits are much better than others in the same batch.  If the tip looks fat from plating I hit it hard on the aluminum oxide stick as those seem to be the ones that want to shed the plating inside the hole and break off the bit.  If they survive the initial cleaning on the aluminum oxide stick they often drill a lot longer than the others.
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Talusman
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« Reply #9 on: December 20, 2015, 09:52:12 am »

Thanks! I'll have to order up a set. I'm liking the drilled "focal bead" concept...

-Jeremy
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Ken S.
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« Reply #10 on: December 20, 2015, 09:57:05 am »

That diamond bandsaw must really speed up your work. yes  Any particular brand you use/recommend?  The stones are nice looking.  Do you have any breakout problems with your drilling technique?

Ken S.
 
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Michael S Hoover - Redrummd
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« Reply #11 on: December 20, 2015, 10:14:07 am »

I use a Gryphon bandsaw and really abuse it.  I am on saw #2 now.  I use the cheap inland blade guides as they are harder.  I drill a hole in the Gryphon guides to hold the inland ones and cut the stems shorter on the inland ones.

http://www.ebay.com/itm/NEW-DIAMOND-TECH-STUDIO-PRO-BANDSAW-BLADE-GUIDE-SET-SPEEDSTER-PRECISION-2000-/291630518325?hash=item43e6889035:g:jnQAAOxyjNlR4X09

I use the cheapest made in China plated blades and toss them as soon as a spot looses the diamond (you can fell a slight bump when this happens) or when the back of the blade gets a knife edge from cutting curves in hard agate.

I never have any breakouts when hand drilling.  I use no vise and just good eye hand coordination.  I put down a zip lock bag on my counter, cover it with a small towel folded in half, put a tiny plastic container of water just behind the towel and dip the piece as soon as mud stops coming out the drill hole.  On wider pieces I drill from both sides to meet in the middle.  The trick is learning how to drill straight.  At first I used a pencil line on the stone to help keep straight.  Now I just hold the stone up with the bit still in it (stopped) to see if I am straight. 

I use a slight side to side motion in the direction I will be lengthening the hole to assist in faster drilling as the diamonds on the tip of a 1mm bit usually wear off one side faster than the other and if you drill straight down they cut a tiny circle in the pattern of the diamonds and pretty much stop cutting - especially on hard agate.
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