The two most common types of settings for rings are the bezel setting and the claw or prong type setting. A claw or prong setting contains prongs that are bent over the stones to hold them in place, whereas a bezel setting consists of a metal piece surrounding the stones. Claw settings use less metal and cover up fewer of the stones but are not as secure and it is not uncommon for stones to fall out of a claw setting. With some tools and patience, you can learn to set stones for both types of settings.
- Skill level:
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Things you need
- Bezel roller
- Jewellery pliers
- Jeweller's glue
- Burnishing tool
- Pre-made bezel cups
- Pre-made prong settings
Place the gemstone in the setting using jewellery pliers and view it from all sides to ensure it is sitting evenly. You may place some jeweller's glue on the setting; however, this step is not always necessary with a bezel setting if your gemstone fits well.
Push the bezel edge against the stone using the bezel roller, first pushing on one side and then on the opposite side. Work your way around the ring in this manner until you have crimped the entire bezel setting inward.
Draw the smooth end of the burnishing tool around the top of the bezel using gentle pressure until you have smoothed out all rough spots.
Place the gemstone in the setting using jewellery pliers and view it from all sides to ensure that it fits. Take the gemstone out and place jeweller's glue on the setting and place the gemstone back into the setting with the jeweller's pliers. Let the glue set for the required amount of time, usually five to ten minutes.
Bend the prong into place using the jewellery pliers and pinch the prongs around the stone until they are secure.
Hold the ring up to the light or use a magnifying glass to ensure that the prongs are secure and fitted properly.
Tips and warnings
- Bezel settings don't usually tear off the stones or press into the stones the way claw settings can but are slightly more labour intensive than claw settings. Claw settings are typically used for faceted stones, such as diamonds, while bezel settings are typically used on cabochons, which are non-faceted and oval-shaped.
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