Metal Wooden Rings

How to Make a Wooden Ring with Metal Inlay?

If you want to make a ring that combines metal elements with wood elements, then you can't miss this article. This article will be able to show you how to set pewter metal into a walnut finger ring. Why did you choose tin here? Because pewter has a low melting point and walnut protects pewter from high temperatures. So, let's get started!

Step 1: Make a ring mold

ring sizer

The first step in trying to make a ring is to measure the circumference of the finger of the person who will wear the ring. One tool I highly recommend here is a ring sizer. Measure the size of the ring you need, and then determine the final thickness of the ring you want to make (in numerical terms, this would be the diameter of the inner ring as well as the diameter of the outer ring, or if you want to use a different measurement dimension, you can do so). Once you've decided on the size of the ring you want to make, you can find the appropriate thickness of walnut wood to make the ring blank.

The next thing you need to make is the casting box. The material used for the casting box is the same as the walnut mentioned above. To make the mold, you should first cut out the shape of the ring. Then adjust the shape of the casting box to the appropriate dimensions. Then it is time to make the side panels of the casting box, which you can use the leftover wood from above.

Step 2: Make the ring blank

When you want to set the metal on the ring, you need to first specify the size of the ring you just expect to make (here you need to know the thickness as well as the circumference of the ring), which you can measure with some specialized measuring tools. Once the measurements are done, you can design the metal pattern on the ring according to the corresponding dimensions.

Design the metal covering process. As mentioned again above, metallic tin is used because it has a low melting point, so you can just melt it and pour it into the grooves in the ring. Here you can need to think a little bit about the flow process of the tin metal. For example, if you are designing a pattern with a deeper grooved spot in the center, you can pour the metal through the center and then the metal will extend from the center to the outer extents of the pattern.

Next you can engrave the walnut ring made above according to the pattern you have designed. If you have the conditions, you can use the laser engraving method to engrave your design. But if you don't have this condition, you can use the most primitive method - hand engraving. The tools you may need to use here include engraving knives, or you can use an engraving machine to do the job if you have the budget for it. Also, to hold the ring in place, you may also need to use a ball vise that is specialized in holding the ring in place. However, here I would suggest that when you are actually engraving, it would be best to leave a deeper groove (just deep enough to be the general thickness of the ring) for the subsequent pouring of the flowing metal into it.

Step 3: Casting the ring

Finally, you've reached this step of casting the ring. Take the casting box you made in step one, place the ring you've made into the casting box, and then just align the deepest part of the ring with the casting channel of the box. Once you've placed the ring in the right spot, you can fasten the mold to the ring. It's a good idea for you to double-check this step, because if it's not fastened securely, the metal will likely leak everywhere in the aftermath.

A few considerations you need to know

Mould box
  1. When casting tin metal you'd better prepare the following tools: leather gloves of sufficient thickness (if you have professional welding gloves it is also possible), cotton pants, apron. These are prepared for your own protection.
  2. Since tin metal has a very low melting point, the requirements are not as strict when it comes to the container in which you want to heat it. You can even choose to use the empty boxes of leftover tuna cans at home. But here you need to pay attention to is you'd better fix the container a little more solid, to prevent subsequent tipping over when heating the metal.
  3. When casting metal, you'd better give the metal enough time to cool down. After you feel that you have waited long enough, you can try to loosen the clamps holding the box. If it works well, you can try to remove the ring. If you are lucky enough, then you can get the casting done in one go. Of course, if you don't wait long enough you can need to start casting the metal again. So, if you're enough you're better off spending more time waiting for it.
  4. Once you have successfully removed your ring, you can remove the excess metal attached to it. Here you can use a metal band saw to accomplish this step. You should be careful not to cut off too much of the metal, as this will leave some room for subsequent polishing.
  5. After the ring is finished, in order to prevent the wooden ring from breaking or some other problems. You'd better apply some special oil to the ring to protect the wood, just like Danish oil is a good choice.
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