Here at Halstead, we carry pre-made settings for calibrated stones and cabochons. If you're interested in setting your own cabochons, we also have a large line of bezel and gallery wires. Below is a guide to the types of settings we carry and common tools you'll use when setting stones.
Calibrated Stone Settings
Pre-made cabochon jewelry settings can save you a lot of time in the studio. The hardest part of using these settings is finding one that is the right fit because cabochon stones vary greatly in size and shape. After placing the cabochon in the setting, use a bezel roller and burnisher to secure it in place.
Tip: Place your finger or a piece of tape over the stone and the metal to protect it from these tools which can slip easily, scratching your piece. It is also helpful to file down and round the ends of the burnishers to remove the sharp tips.
Prong settings are simple and easy to use! Place the cabochon between the prongs and then fold the prongs over to set the cab in place. There are a few tools you can use to fold the prongs over: gemstone setting pliers, prong pushers or the Easy Mount gemsetting pliers. Find all of these jewelry setting tools listed below.
Though you need to do a lot of work to prepare these for stones, these wires come in different widths, heights and gauges so you can order what you need. The difference between the two are: Our bezel wire is plain strips of fine silver and the gallery (a.k.a fancy) wire comes in decorated strips. If you aren't familiar with cabochon setting, please refer to our blog: Granular Cabochon Pendant Tutorial.
Tip: Matching the ends on gallery wire takes time and patience, but the key is to start with a long length of wire. Work on lining it up before you cut the wire so that the patterns match perfectly. Be prepared to have more scrap than you normally would with plain bezel wire.
Bezel Setting Types of Tools
|Bezel Roller: Use this tool to press the bezel walls around the stone. Work by rolling it side to side while pushing the wall toward the stone. Hold it steady so it doesn't slip and damage your piece.|
|Burnisher: After using the bezel roller, use a burnisher to smooth down the sides and brighten the walls around the stone. Our agate burnisher will not scratch stones like a steel-tipped one can.|
|Prong Pusher: When setting a stone using prongs, the prong pusher tool pushes and bends the prongs securely against the stone for a tight fit.|
|Prong Opening Pliers: These pliers are handy when removing or adjusting stones. While the lower jaw holds onto the metal, the upper jaw grips the prong and forces it to open without damaging the stone.|
|Gemstone Setting Pliers: After placing the stone in-between the prongs, use this tool to bend the prongs carefully into place around the gemstone.|
|Tube Bezel Setting Tool: Quickly set your gemstones using our new bezel tube setting tools. Simply place your stone in the tube, make sure it is flush, then place the tool squarely on top and hit it with a hammer and it's set. No more bezel rollers and burnishers, plus, it won't damage your stones. It's definitely our favorite new tool!|
|Easy Mount Gemsetting Pliers: Made to close prongs using a parallel motion, ensuring control of the jaws with little strength needed. The jaws only move 1mm at a time which protects the stone from damage.|
Watch this video for more information on settings.
Halstead is one of North America's leading distributors of quality jewelry supplies. Halstead specializes in wholesale findings such as ready-made stone settings, chain, tools and metals for jewelry artists.
Got questions? Email our studio coordinator Erica Stice at firstname.lastname@example.org. We'd love to hear from you. Sorry, studio support is not available by phone. Emails only, please.