Part Three: Make a Custom Reticulated Silver Cabochon Bezel

Continued from part two of Make a Custom Reticulated Silver Cabochon Bezel.


24. Clamp the spread end in a vise and bend to a right angle.

25. Using your hands, bend the square wire 180° around a 3/8" diameter steel rod clamped in a vise.

26. Clamp the other end of the square wire in the vise and bend 90°. Cut this end to the same length as the first end.

27. Use a cross-peen hammer to spread the second end to match the first end.

28. File and sand the bail to sculpt it to a smooth and pleasing shape, making both ends symmetrical.

File the bottom so the bail lies flat on the backplate.

29. Make a depression in a firebrick to support the inverted bail. Flux the bottom surfaces and place a pallion of easy solder on each of the two bottom pads.

Heat with the torch until the solder just slumps.

30. Flux the backplate and bail. Position and center the bail onto the back surface; then solder it to the assembly. Cool and pickle.

31. Brush the entire finding with a fine brass brush, soap, and water to produce a satin-brushed surface.

32. Mix a pea-sized chunk of liver of sulfur in a cup of hot water; then use an artist's brush to apply the liver-of-sulfur solution to the reticulated surface only. Once you achieve the desired color, rinse in fresh water and dry. Wax the surface with Renaissance Wax to seal and stabilize the color (patina).

33. Set the turquoise cabochon in the bezel using a bezel roller. Go around the bezel several times to insure a tight fit.

We hope you've enjoyed your adventure using reticulated silver to create the finding for your turquoise pendant. — Tom & Kay Benham

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