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Grigori
14-06-2006, 12:51
A basic question. I'm looking for a largish garnet bead for a choker (maybe some ofther types also), and can only find small ones pre-drilled with tiny holes, or large ones undrilled. How hard is it to get a crystal drilled, or the hole expanded?

Could I get my local jeweller to do it? Or do I need to see someone special? Maybe I could just get a tiny bit for my own drill and DIY it?

Any ideas much appreciated. Thanks! :)

TemperanceAngel
14-06-2006, 12:57
Similia I would think a local jeweller would be able to do that for you.

But what about getting some wire for jewellery making? Do you have bead shops in Brisvegas? Then you could wrap it around so as to not hurt the crystal?

Grigori
14-06-2006, 13:05
Thanks TA! What I really want is a leather choker for myself with a single garnet on it. And I thought about getting a few other things to make some gifts from. Using wire is maybe a bit too complex for me, and will clash with my manly image also ;)\

It is really bad to drill the poor crystal?.... :(

There are a few bead stores in my area, but they are more for grandma's than new agers, so their crystal selections were disappointing. I'm going on a road trip to a crystal wholesaler to put my ABN to good use shortly :D I was hoping they would have what I want already, but if not then as long as I know a jeweller (or something) could help me out afterwards, I could spend up with confidence.

Ruby7
14-06-2006, 13:08
Well, I am a jeweller and as far as I know most jewellers do not work on cutting or drilling stones, this is a separate specialized trade. The drills that we use are steel which cuts metal and soft substances like pearl or amber but would not cut harder minerals like garnet. Most jewellery stores have a lapidary that they send jobs like that to. I imagine the lapidary must have diamond tip drill bits or something like that and a special method to keep the stone cool while drilling.

TA's idea of wire wrapping is great and works well with a large bead like that.

All the best,
Ruby7

Grigori
14-06-2006, 13:08
I just found this at shop dot wicked (sorry Rabble, looking to steal your ideas :D)

http://shop.wiccked.com/archives/jewellery/the_grapes_of_wrath/index.php

Something like these stones is what I had in mind. Maybe bigger though.

Grigori
14-06-2006, 13:11
Thank Ruby7! I was trying to find "lapidary" people in my area, but was not yet able to even find the correct word for them :| I have a jeweller friend (who sadly is a seller, not a maker/fixer) but they might be able to point me in the right direction also.

Has anyone got some pics/links of the wire wrapping method? I am picturing me making something where the stone would fall out of...

TemperanceAngel
14-06-2006, 13:15
Thanks TA! What I really want is a leather choker for myself with a single garnet on it. And I thought about getting a few other things to make some gifts from. Using wire is maybe a bit too complex for me, and will clash with my manly image also ;)

It is really bad to drill the poor crystal?.... :(

There are a few bead stores in my area, but they are more for grandma's than new agers, so their crystal selections were disappointing.

similia I meant the bead shops would have the wire. The wire is really thin and need not look unmanly at all, in fact you can be creative, artisitc or just use it simplistically. I bought some wire from a bead shop a couple of weeks ago to wrap a quartz crystal I wanted to wear so i could utilize the properties on my heart/throat chakra.

You could wrap the wire minimalistically around the garnet and then attach to leather?

Garnet is a stone that is best worn in that area too, great choice!!

I think crystals, like all living things, probably would not like being drilled through the middle??

Remins me of that scene in the first Shrek where the gingerbread man is being tortured :(

Ruby7
14-06-2006, 13:19
I have a great book on wire wrapping, but that doesn't help you much does it!

There are various methods and I can't explain with words, diagrams work better. Hmmm, sorry :(

Ruby7

TemperanceAngel
14-06-2006, 13:19
Pictures aren't too clear on this one:

http://www.mandarava.com/Retail/Wire_wrap_jewelry.htm

Some are wrapped around here:

http://www.wehug.com/

http://www.emporia.edu/earthsci/amber/go340/wrap.htm

In between, Ruby7 I did not know you were a jeweller!!

Ruby7
14-06-2006, 13:22
Hi TA,

Yes, have been slaving away at the jeweller's bench for about 10 years and have been in the jewellery business for 20 years this November. Now that makes me feel old!

Ruby7

Grigori
14-06-2006, 14:49
Oh I get it now. :thumbsup: I'm gonna head into the city this afternoon so will check out a broader range of options with the wire idea. Thanks guys!! :) :*

prudence
14-06-2006, 15:28
Hi Similia
My husband tried to do this and it is difficult, and you may chew up a lot of beads. Try to find some kind of twine that is narrow enough to fit through the holes or maybe use elastic cord, it makes great chokers.

Grigori
14-06-2006, 17:21
Well I am back from my city visiting. I found one shop that had just what I wanted, problem is they only sell them in strands, and I really don't need $200 worth of garnets :( I found a couple smaller bits that might work for the wire idea at a tarot place, so I'll give that a go when I've got some wire.

What happened to your husbands gems Prudence? Do you mean they broke when drilling them?

To be continued.... :D

catlin
14-06-2006, 20:58
Simila, drilling holes in a stone is tricky without the right tools. Crystals vary in hardness and it would be a shame to ruin a wonderful garnet by wrong drilling.

BTW there are ready made spring like thingies made of silver or gilt wire out there, in which you can fit in a medium sized crystal. They have a loop with which to fix them to a choker. Here is a link:
http://www.lederkram.de/steinkramanhaengerunddonuts.html

TheOld
14-06-2006, 21:09
i had done this research a couple of years ago and the things is that take you a Bench drill and a Diamond drill bits to be able to do a hole in a crystal (pure crystal are verry hard, it's a 8 on the scale from 1 to 10)
p.s. a carbon drill tips will not do, that take a diamond one, much more solide and more $$$$ also ;-)

have fun
Omeada Lusvam

Grigori
14-06-2006, 21:18
Yeah I thought after posting how stupid the idea of DIY drilling was, but decided to leave my question and just suffer the embarassment of asking a dumb thing :D

Thanks for that link Catlin. I'll ask at the store if they have them. One of the links TA gave lead to a tutorial on using wire, where they used square wire which I really liked, so I might find some of that also.

I wish I had time to get some today. The crystals are sitting there goading me into using them and I cannot :( Guess I better keep working instead LOL

prudence
15-06-2006, 08:22
Well I am back from my city visiting. I found one shop that had just what I wanted, problem is they only sell them in strands, and I really don't need $200 worth of garnets :( I found a couple smaller bits that might work for the wire idea at a tarot place, so I'll give that a go when I've got some wire.

What happened to your husbands gems Prudence? Do you mean they broke when drilling them?

To be continued.... :D
the beads were either shattered or only the mouth of the hole was enlarged, and badly at that, it just chewed up the outside of the hole in the bead, leaving the inner tunnel through the bead the same size that he had started with....

good luck with it!

Grigori
15-06-2006, 19:25
Thanks for your help all! I finished one :D Its absolutely nothing like what I imagined, but I'm happy with it. I'm gonna keep my eye out for the bits I need to do what I imagined also :D

The leather band didn't work out, because I couldn't find anything as thick as I wanted, and the stuff I did find was too thick for the claspy things I got. And I needed a clasp so I can take it off frequently (sliding knots annoy me like crazy). I put the wrapped stone on a wooden bead thing a friend bought me when in Bali. The stone I found is pretty good, dark like I wanted, but still clearly red. In the picture just looks black though.

For the curious a picture of my neck (if you zoom in you can see it was cold today and I have goosepimples hahaha)

TemperanceAngel
15-06-2006, 20:59
Oh my, did you make that?
It's gorgeous :D
Well done, similia, I am very impressed :)

Now I have got a few ideas, are you interested in making for others ;)

Ruby7
15-06-2006, 21:25
Nice work Similia!

Now that you've made a wire wrap piece you'll just want to make more :)

All the best,
Ruby7

Grigori
15-06-2006, 21:35
awww thanks guys :D I do want to make more. So I know one person who might want one :) (I offered one to two friends of mine and one said "no" flat out and the other changed the topic... haha) My work is not crappy, its rustic :P Rustic is trendy ;)

memries
15-06-2006, 22:02
Similia.. a few years ago I joined a Lapidary Club and cut and ground a stone of my own. It was sodalite, a lovely blue. The gem shows would have lapidarists at them with their cards. I think it was $2.00 a week then, can you imagine ? I spent one winter learning and it was great fun. Yes, they have diamond drill bits with water cooling them and they had a huge saw to cut through the biggest boulders you ever saw. It would take and hour or two but eventually the rock would divide evenly in half. Never did one of those but wish I had.
Your necklace is very manly and attractive, it seems to balance the chunky choker with the way the stone is wrapped in wire. Good Job ! Memries

Ruby7
16-06-2006, 08:30
The Lapidary Club here in Ottawa charges about $15.00 for a yearly membership. I joined one year but I just never had time to take advantage of using their workshop and learning to cut stones. Are there Lapidary Clubs all over the world I wonder?

Ruby7

chrisam-crystals
12-08-2006, 23:14
to cut through a bead you need diamond tipped drill bits, a bead holder, vice and lots of beads to practise on! lol

but what you can also do is use a bead reamer which is diamond coated - it looks a pit like a small thin ice pick, ans graduated in size from thin at the tip to thick towards the handle.

you need to keep the hole in the bead wet with water and just insert the reamer and twist it around, a little like you would with a q-tip in your ear. ;)

they only cost a few pounds/dollars and they are invaluable to us jewellery makers, when one side of a bead's hole is slightly smaller than it should be.

sharpchick
13-08-2006, 02:36
IMO, the hardness of a garnet wouldn't make it suitable for a DIY drilling job, Similia. Some of the fossilized resins, like jet and amber, can be drilled at home. I've done that. But those "stones" are soft enough to be scratched.