How to Bend Antique Silverware

Written by allison fowler
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How to Bend Antique Silverware
The handles of antique silverware can be fashioned into rings and bracelets. (Comstock/Comstock/Getty Images)

Bending antique silverware can create interesting pieces of art and jewellery. Rings made from the handles of spoons, for example, are always in high demand. Pendants, bracelets, earrings, necklaces, pins and napkin rings are just a few of the other ways that you can give antique silverware new life. With the right equipment, bending antique silverware into jewellery pieces is fairly simple. It is inadvisable, however, to attempt to bend antique silverware without the proper equipment due to the high potential for breakage.

Skill level:
Challenging

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Things you need

  • Ring forming and bending tool (Pepetools makes one that is affordable and effective)

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Instructions

  1. 1

    Mount the bending tool to your workbench to avoid slippage. The device by Pepetools includes a lever on a wooden mount with multiple dies for creating round bends, 45-degree and 90-degree bends.

  2. 2

    Choose the size and shape you wish to bend. If making a ring or a bracelet, take a measurement with a tape measure. The tool includes six 12 to 22 mm round bending dies.

  3. 3

    Locate the appropriate dies for the bend. For rings, you should use a round post die and the matching concave die to achieve the desired result.

  4. 4

    Fit the negative side of the die into the bender and the positive side into the hole.

  5. 5

    Insert the silverware handle into the bender between the dies.

  6. 6

    Pull the lever to bend the metal. Move the metal slowly into the dies as you pull the lever if you wish to bend a larger surface area. Cut the metal to the desired length.

Tips and warnings

  • Bending Antique Silverware into other shapes is done the same way as the technique for annealing in step 3
  • Using any kind of torch can be dangerous, be sure to wear the proper safety equipment and keep long hair tied back. And be careful of hot metal that can cause severe burns.

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