Welcome to the CRAFT-y Corner of my Web!
A place for my Workings, my Weavings ...
oh, and my more mundane crafts as well.

Monday, September 5, 2011

Chainmail - The Quest for a Jump Ring Rig ...

I woke up the next morning having posted the photos of Kara's new earrings onto my Facebook page before going to bed. I found that I was still extremely enthused by the whole experience (which was a good thing as it distracted me from the fact that I was going to have to wait until Wednesday to see the Endodontist) and became further encouraged by the very positive reaction the pictures were eliciting from various persons who's opinions I value. ^_^

There was more to it as well, it's something in the feeling of working the metal that is very difficult to describe ... I view my Lady Brìd as my current primary Patron, with Ladies Medb and Airmid in attendance. Brìd, herself, being a transfunctional deity ...
-- She of the Healing Well -- She of the Forge and Craft -- She of the Inspired Word --
... I found working with those little metal rings had an odd way of making me feel better in touch with her energy. Everything onward from the point where I began to make the silver wire coil for the small jump rings just lent to a strong feeling of happiness and well being the like I haven't felt for a very long time.

With all that and a couple of good friends to encourage me, I spent the first part of yesterday (Sunday) morning wrestling with how I could cobble together a large jump ring rig. Theorizing that I might be able to use a knitting needle as the mandrel, I took a quick trip up to Value Village (acting on  Sheri's suggestion) with a test jump ring and sized out one that would work. With a little trial and error, I found that the size 6½ needle was the right size ... it's one of the old 1970's plastic needles of the type I can remember my mother using when I was a child. I picket it up, along with its mate, for 69¢. ^_^

The next stop was Home Depot for a pair of L-bracket shelf hangers ($3) and some wood screws ($2.50) then back home to turn an old, wooden Canadian Tire TV tray into the base for the rig. I put everything together and then just had to give it a spin.  ^_~

Everything was going terrifically well right up to the point where I needed to cut the coiled copper into the rings. And there I hit a wall ... my little craft wire cutters from Micheals just wasn't up to the task. That was as far as I could go with it until today when I made the trip back to Home Depot to pick up a pair of straight cut aviation snips. A point of interest here ... I walked into the store with no idea where within it I would find the tool in question only to find a whole rack of them within ten steps, on sale no less. Whoot!

Now I am armed and ready to do battle with the dreaded 14 gauge copper wire coil that defeated me last night. And, I find I'm quite looking forward to it. ^_^

I heated the knitting needle carefully with a candle
 flame to soften the plastic so I can bend the end.

The first couple of turns were the tricky ones,
getting the wire to coil properly.

Working beautifully.

14 gauge copper coil ...
my nemesis ^_~

The solution!
The snips work beautifully.

My nemesis is now defeated ^_^

I'm keeping them in my bead box
for now ... but I suspect they'll
outgrow it pretty quickly.

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