How to Solder Gemstones Into Silver

Written by janet lee-amies
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How to Solder Gemstones Into Silver
Faceted gemstones can be flush-set into silver ring bands. (Comstock/Comstock/Getty Images)

Gemstones are such integral parts of jewellery that in some cases, it may even appear that the stones are soldered right into the silver. In fact, stones are carefully held in place with the metal that's part of the jewellery piece. Epoxy or glue is considered taboo to jewellers. Flush or gypsy settings are streamlined and the tiny faceted stones are countersunk into the metal so only the top edge or face of the stone sits above the surface of the metal.

Skill level:
Moderately Challenging

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Things you need

  • Center punch
  • Hammer
  • Ring band
  • Faceted gem stone
  • Digital caliper
  • Drill
  • Drill bits
  • Round burr
  • Burnisher

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  1. 1

    Measure the gemstone using the digital calipers. Note the circumference of the stone's middle part, called the pavilion. This is the widest part of a faceted stone.

  2. 2

    Position the centre punch on the spot of the ring band where the stone will go. Hit it with the hammer to make a divot.

  3. 3

    Put a small drill bit in the drill. Drill a hole in the divot you made in Step 2 to make it larger.

  4. 4

    Enlarge the hole you made in step 3. Put a drill bit that's 3/4 the size of the diameter of the stone's pavilion into the drill. Drill the hole to make it larger.

  5. 5

    Create a recess for the stone so that the top will be flush with the surface of the metal. Countersink the metal using a round burr fitted into the drill. Drill 1- to 2-mm deep.

  6. 6

    Put the faceted stone into hole. It should sit deep enough that the top doesn't protrude too high above the ring band.

  7. 7

    Use the burnisher -- a tool that's like a screwdriver with a tip of metal that's shaped in a rounded point -- to set the stone. Press the top of the burnisher into the metal surrounding the stone, effectively creating a bead of metal that you push against the facet stone.

  8. 8

    Repeat the step above, working your way around the stone in the pattern of a compass and alternating north to south and east to west -- until the stone is held firmly in place with beads of metal.

  9. 9

    Repeat the steps above to flush-set multiple stones in a ring band.

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