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How to Make Soldered Jewelry, Episode #9 - Soldered Bezel Set Stone

In episode #9 of our How to Make Soldered Jewelry video series, you will bring together all the tips, tricks and techniques that you have learned in this video series to make this gorgeous pendant. Bezel setting a stone is the next step to take your jewelry to the next level. >> Scroll down for the list of tools.


Thank you for joining us for our How To Make Soldered Jewelry series :)


hi i'm aisha fermanski of everdine jewelry and i'm Lisa Niven Kelly of we have come together in

this introduction to soldering series to teach you all kinds of good soldering stuff this is the last episode of our

series and we are going to teach you how to bezel-set a stone [Music]

we have finally arrived folks this is all of our hard work come together

to finally learn to set a stone what everybody wants to do everybody wants to do this

right yes but before jumping in if you're new to this series make sure that you start at the beginning if you're

beginning solderer and check out our first episode which is about tools and materials and then we sort of feed you

through of different techniques which leads you to this moment right here right now in the tools and

materials episode we touch base a little bit on the different flow temperatures of solder easy medium and hard and in

this lesson this is when it's really going to come into play we're going to apply it we're going to use it so our

first solder join is done with hard our second one is done with medium our third one's done with soft and then we

actually do a fourth one and we use soft again which was okay it sure was i show you how to use the fire scale

actually in your favor to prevent previous solder joints from flowing in

this class we bessel set a circle so the seam we just put at the bottom but one question we get a lot is if you are

bezel setting an odd shaped stone where do you put the seam do you put it at a point you put on tight curve do you

put it on a long straight away talk them through yeah for sure and really the short answer is that you put it on a

straightaway always put it on a straightaway unless you are putting a bezel around a

teardrop okay so on a teardrop what you're going to do is you're going to bring the bezel wire around you're going to overlap the tip like this

solder it closed remove the excess and then because it's a really sharp

point or corner you're going to file that end down much lower than you will the remaining bezel

wire and that's so that when you go and fold the bezel wire or push the bezel wire over you don't get any pleating or

buckling in those areas cool would you do that as well like a square you sure would you sure would awesome so on the

back plate for this project we just use a ready-made circle just a punched circle but remember you could grab a

piece of sheet and get out that saw go watch our sawing class on and make an interesting

back plate to make it your own super fun yeah this is great project we're excited let's get into it

this is the design that we put together to demonstrate a stone pendant

yeah super cute lisa stamped out two of the clouds and the moon stamp i

sought them out and we pulled this faceted moonstone moonstone cabochon she stole it from my

staff from lisa's stash she just me digging up here this cute little looks like a

little fence right this is actually bezel wire it's scallop bezel

wire and it's in fine silver fine silver is great for bezels for a few reasons one is that it's soft

so when we shape it around the stone and also later when we when we kind of push it over and and form it around the stone

it'll be easier it also doesn't fire scale like sterling silver so it makes it easy to solder together

so now that we know where we're heading design wise let me show you how to form the bezel

wire around the stone the first thing we need to do is start with a really

flat um and straight edge which as you can see here lisa this is not

nope i'm gonna take the flush cutters

and just trim that end and you know what i might as well start fresh with a with a scallop so i'm going to trim off that

kind of because this wire is so soft and thin it's not going to hurt your cutters

that looks straight good one there we go

and then here's a little trick for you when we are wrapping the bezel wire on stone you're

going to wish that you had a third hand not the third hand that we use in soldering but literally a third hand and

the way that we can help ourselves with this is this is just tape

that i folded over on itself and then you put your stone down

and now it'll stay put while you're wrapping the puzzle wire around it i've never done that now i feel silly

it's really helpful if you have um very small very small stones too so you'll notice that i just

absentmindedly did this thing where i i curved this total habit

you want to get the little you know get your shaping kind of started and then

lay the wire down i apologize if my fingers are going to cover here and then we're just going to

start to wrap let's see if i can get my it's nice and tight around the edge of tension

is overlap here oh it's so cute okay so let's see

oh we got lucky right right between here

so you're drawing a line right at the overlap and i take a visual note right here and i go okay i'm going to actually trim

this a little long and then i'm going to i'm going to wrap it around again and then kind of trim it

back until it fits perfectly yeah it's a little safer yeah it can shrink but you

can't stretch exactly cool

flip this over keeping in mind that your flush cutter cuts flush only

see here so you can see

i like to wrap it around again and see how i have a little overlap

see i have partial scallop there on the right i'm going to trim that off okay

because if you did it too big your stone would just wobble around in there you need a nice tight fit

yeah you want a nice tight fit all right this will be good

and if it ended like mid scallop you just just go with it make it work yeah just

go with it don't worry about too much is that a good feeler yeah this looks

great yeah yeah that looks great you want you know if if it's if you're really pushing with all your

fingers to get it to meet like with all your might it's too tight yeah

i'd rather have a little wiggle room um than too tight there are a couple

tricks i can teach you later to stretch a bezel just in case that happens um but for now you know do your due

diligence and and get a nice fit but you do need to make sure those two ends are flush

so if you don't have a good flush cutter maybe you'd get in there with sandpaper or a file or something yeah file would

do that great job all right we are ready to solder this

we need to close the gap before soldering just like we've been learning in this

series right the two ends need to be flat and flush and touching and so you'll see i was passing the two ends

over each other to build a little tension and then cloak keep them together just

like that with bezel wire what i like to do is once i have it together like this

or just give it a little pinch with the chain nose

not really right all right so that is together

let's fire up the torch and get that soldered you'll notice that i placed the pallion

right here below the seam i would like to mention because this happens in my class with my with my

students is sometimes it looks like it's laying on the palliation but they're not actually touching

and it's such small work that it's really important that you get your face really close

and the older i get the closer i have to get my eyeballs um tie that up

to the seam to check it out um because sometimes you'll be heating heating heating and nothing's happening

and it's because they're not actually touching and i see a little black there but that's from the sharpie right yeah

and that's okay that's not going to interfere with our soldering i'm fired up using the max flame

max flame but turned down to a really soft flame yeah this is thin and

fine silver here it'll just go yeah if you yep just like that we're

going to be real gentle and i'm going to come in here and i'm going to spray a little flux

and then just slowly working in a circle heating that sterling bezel evenly

when the solder flows it'll run up that seam and it won't get far scale so you won't

see that like you did on sterling correct that is a soft flame

you know what it's too soft too soft crack it up i'm gonna turn up just a little bit

look at it go and up you know and that was really perfect

because it showed you know how slow and patient we need to be

yeah and how we saw it start to flow when we got to see it come up if things are happening rapid fire

you know like let's say that thing is glowing red hot and the solder comes flying up the seam it's

not it's not ideal because you've overheated the metal which means it'll be brittle we've overheated the solder

which mean it'll be brittle and you know then we have more problems like the seam popping apart

okay i wanted to mention one thing because i think i forgot to mention

that this solder is hard solder yes hard solder yep it's the first solder joint

in a party of solder joints oh i like it a party yeah because we're going to use medium and easy

as well in this project the other thing i want to mention is normally when we're done soldering we

run to the pickle pot to clean up any fire scale i did not do that with this bezel wire

we're actually going to leave the solder joint dirty to prevent it from reflowing while we're

working good one solder will not flow if it's dirty exactly oh

it's not full proof yeah if you're really yeah if you're really pushed it would flow again but it's going to help us a

lot so let's place the stone inside the bezel make sure it fits

look at that there's no big old gaps there's a little space there but that's okay yeah this is

totally acceptable so the next thing we're going to talk

about is the height of the bezel okay you want the

the rule that you're taught in jewelry school is that it's one-third the height

of the stone but that's not really true because it depends on who cut the stone

and like where is that how drastic it the dome is and all these things and so you need to get comfortable just

eyeballing the wire and thinking to yourself okay this is kind of high

and if you know when the time comes for me to push it over there's going to be too much material

and what you'll end up getting pleats you know what i mean like where it folds over and you get wrinkles so you just

want a little bit of metal just enough to push over to hold the stone in and i'm going to tell you this is a

little high can you see that so we're going to sand it down a little bit

this is very fine sandpaper you could use something a little bit more coarse this is 800 grit but you could i mean

you could use 400 grit if you really want to get the job done quickly

place the bezel you know right on your sandpaper and what you want to do is you want to

work in either circles or figure eights so that you're removing an even amount

of material from all you know the whole the whole space if you go back and forth because we're

human you may accidentally just like take a bunch off one side and not the

other okay so

i was taught to do figure eights so that's what i do

it's kind of fun and i stop and rotate yes you're not putting too much pressure on one side

if this was a much worse coarser grit i probably would be done by now

it's cute it's real cute oh yeah that came down quite a bit

is that better yep and we're gonna stick with this and it also made sure the whole bottom of the bezel

is flat yes which thank you for bringing that up lisa you're welcome perfect timing

here's the blank that we're soldering this to so this is the time where you're going to check

and make sure that your bezel is flat and flush to your blank make sure your blank is flat and make sure your blank

is flat and if you need to anneal your blank to flatten it take the time to do that

remember solder doesn't fill gaps so we really need to make sure that this is this looks good and you know what it

does yay that's where you want to look right yep

okay next we'll solder the bezel down to the

blank i have our two pieces set up on the

tripod here on the mesh and the first thing that i'm going to do

is flux the two pieces and you'll notice that i have the bezel flipped

face down because i want to flex the surface that's that's being soldered

let's take up your torch i'm going to apply the flux to the bezel


and the blink now that everything is fluxed i'm

going to flip the bezel over onto the blank

you'll notice i'm using my tweezers don't don't forget all this these parts are hot oh yeah right

i'm putting that seam down at the bottom i also like the way you say hot hat my midwestern accent

i'm just gonna move this and get this in and you know exactly

where to put that because you'd already played with design i did yeah we we have those two clouds and uh the moon

and i put that laid that out

so on camera it doesn't look centered but it is i'm actually at this moment looking down

on it like a bird's eye view to really double check

and then we are going to use medium solder pallions to solder the bezel down

to the back plate

and i have cut very small little pallions

and i'm putting them on the inside some people

place their palions around the outside if they're going to then saw off and remove all the metal on

the outside but we want to hide our solder on the inside

and if you do too much solder then your stone may not fit real well right that is true

because then you have all kinds of mounds and excess solder inside there

and you can use wire solder here just cut it really small yeah it kind of rolls right up to the edge

i'm going to use my solder pick to just push all of these pallians out to

the edge

rock couple more


now we're ready to rock okay striking the torch

i'm going to heat it from above just for a little bit just to give it a little preheat

now i'm going to work from below cool

so again

here it goes

it did go here on the right side i thought it didn't but it did i can see from the outside edge here

i turned off the torch and we are showing you the side view because i want you to see here

that though the solder was on the inside we drew it out to the outer edge and here you can see it all along the edge a

little perfect line of silver and those palliations they leave those little shadows of where they were placed

originally they'll always be there okay unless you clean them up but they're going to be on the inside so it doesn't really matter


let's prep these pieces to be soldered the first thing we're going to do is apply flux to

our pendant and to the little stamped pieces that we're going to solder on

do the little pieces first

you notice i went you know what yeah the reason i did that is because you probably saw it on camera but

these little pieces get hot so fast that the oxide started coming up and i

so they were a little pink so i was like quick trying to get the flux on there they should be good and now i'm going to add

teeny tiny easy or soft interchangeable here

um pallians one to each

of the tiny accents

okay now i'm going to pre-flow the solder on the little

little accents well i could put the little pallians down on

the piece here and then lay the little pieces on top that would be fine but it feels like juggling six things at once

it sounds scary yeah shift so i'm going to pre-flow the solder so that we know where they are

okay and they won't move that's okay with me okay good

i'm gonna move our pendant out of the way just a little bit so it doesn't get heat that it doesn't need

for these i'm just going to heat from above it doesn't take a lot of heat to get them going

all right now we've moved on to soft center right yep

was it gone you did it yep just like that okay with these little things that just happened so fast

they heat up so fast and now i'm going to place the little accents on our pendant

you'll notice that i placed the little accents on our pendant

right two clouds and a little moon really cute and they are ready to be soldered because everything has been

fluxed and is good to go and i'm gonna heat it like we did previously where i'm going to kind of

lightly preheat it from above and then focus most of my heat from underneath

and it's fine that they're dark on the top because they can be dirty on the top we kept them clean on the bottom you got

it so i'm going to strike up the torch

i'm going to focus most of my heat where these accents are because i don't want to accidentally

reheat or melt the bezel wire here we go

and just like before we are going to know that the solder

flowed when those little pieces drop down to the surface of that back plate

there they go

moon is down [Music] and there they go the clouds

and that was with easy it was with easy and you'll notice that the hard solder on the seam of the bezel

did not reflow and the medium solder that is is holding the bezel down to the

back plate also did not reflow because of those different flow temps because of what we learned in

this soldering series yes it's all coming together yep so this looks really great and now we're going to clean it up

in the pickle pot we're rolling on jerry rolling on

we have the bezel soldered down and the three little accents on the front

we toss in the pickle to clean it up because we need to solder on the bail

you'll notice that i have a nickel here

it's not a joke it's a tip

i'm going to show you here that the bail which is a jump ring

is resting on a nickel to prop it up because otherwise if there

was no nothing for it to rest there it would just fall off is there something else under

there there there is something else there i can't see it in this picture okay here i'm gonna dismantle this okay

okay take off the jump ring ready

so i put down the nickel and it wasn't tall enough when you put down the pin or no first i put down the nickel and it

wasn't tall enough so i'm i added a little bit more height with the t pin oh

because in the previous lesson with the bail we just used the t-pin because it was just the thin blank

but right now it's sitting up on that bezel good so it's pretty tall good tricks to learn so this is our

setup but first what we're going to do is flux our pieces so let's go ahead and do

that and the nickel might melt nope it's just going to chill there


i once did it with i once tried it with a penny um pennies melted very low temperature i

learned copper

when i think of nowadays or not even copper

good one and you marked exactly where to lay that

i did so you see a little sharpie marker there

and then i'm going to take a small pallion of easy or you know soft solder

or you can even bump down right to super soft super easy whatever they call it

whatever they call it

so much patience needed in soldering as we've learned okay yeah

ready to rock remember we're not going to heat the bale we're going to heat the blank okay the bail will get enough

residual heat just pretend it's not even there and do not overheat or you're going to lose the stuff on the other side

yes [Music]

slowly but surely

so that extra couple brush brush brush kind of spread it around so you you saw that it it it kind of it

went into a little pool and then i heat a little bit more and then it ran along that edge of the bail

so let's pop this in the pickle and get it cleaned up we went ahead and took the piece out of

the pickle pot we used our choice of oxidizing solution in this case we used

jack's silver blackener with a q-tip with a q-tip and

we i work gloves and then we neutralized it in a baking soda and water

then polish it up with a pro polish pad looks good looks good

i want to pull our focus here at the edge of the bezel

can we see the back real quick sure look at that it's so pretty okay

to our original solder seam it's kind of bumpy and a little ugly

so i think that we should sand it smooth that off so i just have 800 grit

sandpaper here on the sanding stick and i'm going to use the narrow edge of it

can you show between swipes oh sure yeah good

now i should explain to me that the reason she didn't do this before she soldered it down was that she'd be

removing some solder and you might want that solder

so it doesn't like it's super thin and reflow right yeah so if you were to remove all this

solder and then accidentally flow it you you want to have more than less

right can we see again i guess sorry i just get into my groove that's okay yeah it

just covers it can you see it yeah okay it's coming down and getting shiny

so you could also be using silicon wheels

radials radials do it they're more of a polish i would say either sandpaper by hand

sandpaper on a split mandrel

fine sanding barrel on a flex shaft let's see your progress there looking

good will you hold it up mm-hmm i'm gonna blow off some of this

can you see it yeah now would you continue kind of all around the bezel to share whatever

texture you're creating or is it super smooth i'm not going to work around the edge of

the bezel because i don't want to accidentally sand any of this so i'm just going to focus here

you're using such a fine grit sandpaper what do we decide it's like six 800.


that's good yeah looks good let's move on to setting the stone oh the exciting part yes

i want you to fight the urge to just grab your stone and pop it in your setting don't shove it

because if this is too tight we've committed right

so here's a little a little trick that has been used since the beginning of time the

beginning of dental floss time dental floss lay a piece of dental floss

down loosely place the stone inside the setting

so your point is that if this was wrong you had to do some adjusting you can't get your stone out

without that in there correct and you could also drill a hole in the back sometimes you do that you could drill a

hole in the back so that you would have access to poke it with something but i didn't want to do that with this design

because this moonstone is partially transparent yeah and i don't want to see a hole through the stone so

um this dental floss works well when you're ready to pull it out just

pull it out just like that i know that we're good to go so we're

just gonna commit put it in do it let's get out our setting tools

let's go ahead and set this scallop bezel wire down final step yes very exciting

how we're going to do this is you're going to or i'm going to um slightly push down north south

west and east when doing this i'm not going to go for the gusto what that means is

as i push here i'm just i'm pushing it down like at 45 degrees i'm not going

all the way down to the stone yet makes sense a little bit at a time we're essentially what we're doing is we're

tacking the stone down are you pushing on the scallop or the whole thing

um the whole thing and then rocking up towards the scallop okay

now we have the four points tacked and now you're going to go between those

four points so here corner and i'm going across

it is and then i'm going across to push

and then do the next the other two corners we noticed on my square bezel pusher

there that it was a little scratch so we cleaned it up the face of it we really sanded it so it's nice and shiny

because you don't want to transfer any scratches onto your bezel let's be honest now i've lost track of

where i am that's okay but you know what it's okay i've tacked down four eight spots

let's be honest and you know what if i can't tell that's then we're good to go right i did notice here this isn't

tacked here so let's push that one over now that everything is tacked i'm gonna

work around in a circle okay okay

and you go in that direction so you don't end up like pushing the whole thing over to one side accidentally

exactly thank you for bringing that up yes oh it's so cute

let's see i'm rocking forward yeah and now you're you're really pressing right

um i'm actually not pressing that hard it's fine silver so it's really soft

and those little scallops they kind of want to lay down on their own so good little scallops

but i do want you to take note how i'm rocking now the scallops are actually on the

surface of the stone

perfect height that it's really funny because i had the thought where i went oh we have to talk

about if the too smooth so if your rocker skips

sometimes that can be detrimental to your piece so if this was a very soft stone like a turquoise

and your rocker skipped and you caught an edge you could scratch the surface of your stone

careful yeah be careful the other thing you can do is i'm sorry my hands we've been working all day and they are not

pretty but you can use your finger as a block yes you would run into your finger

but in some say you would save the stone you can also

use painters tape and just put a layer of painters tape on the surface of the stone

so i have definitely gone around all the way around

this is looking pretty cute you can't keep it oh man

so this is looking pretty good i do want to bring in the

burnisher really quick because if you don't use scalloped wire you're

probably going to want to smooth it over even more and this is the curved burnisher

and what you would do is you don't want to rub the stone right and this is a little hard

to get this angle on camera but i'm going to show you here and you just go along

burnishing with this steel tool and is it just pushing it down and kind

of making it a little smooth the easiest way to describe it is is

that this is a high polished steel and this is a very soft

fine silver and so the hardened steel is

smoothing over looks like steel shot yeah

smoothing it over

so [Music]

could you have done all this before patina in sure

that looks nice it really brightens up those edges doing this burnishing and gives a little

sparkle will it pull out tiny scratches

smooth them over i think the word is smooth in them smoothing them up mm-hmm good technical

term wow looks great

that looks good

and we're done [Music]


Tools & Materials

Blazer Stingray Butane Torch
Blazer Stingray Butane Torch
Jewelry Making Tools Charcoal Block
Charcoal Block
Jewelry Making Tools Cupronil  Flux and Fire Scale Preventative
Jewelry Making Tools Solder Picks, Set of 3
Solder Picks, Set of 3
Jewelry Making Tools Curved Burnisher
Curved Burnisher
Jewelry Making Tools Prong Pusher
Prong Pusher
Jewelry Making Tools Safety Glasses
Safety Glasses
Jewelry Making Tools Cool (Quench) Cup with Gripping Tweezers
Soldering Starter Kit
Soldering Starter Kit
Metal Stamping Blanks Sterling Silver Round, Disc, Circle, 25mm (1"), 20g
Metal Stamping Blanks Sterling Silver Round, Disc, Circle, 25mm (1"), 22g
Wire & Sheet Metal Sterling Silver Sheet Metal, 3" x 3", 22 Gauge