Author Topic: Details on the manufacture of custom made DBL Jewelry  (Read 10193 times)

Offline ah2bqat

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Details on the manufacture of custom made DBL Jewelry
« on: June 25, 2009, 01:00:20 AM »
Mikla, can you, or OMC, or David, or anyone else who has lived thru the process tell me something?  How long a process is it from initial design to wax cast to finished product?  Assuming, of course, that not too many snags hit the works.    

I've never done a custom design before; and also of course, I'm anxious to see what comes of Li'l BLOOO.  Truly, I've got no clue concerning the process that has just started.  I can't bug David to hold my hand throughout the entire process.   You know how good he is about updates, but I'm talking the overall big picture.  
« Last Edit: June 26, 2009, 12:12:39 AM by Diamondsbylauren »
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Offline Mikla

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Re: What does take to get a custom DBL piece?
« Reply #1 on: June 25, 2009, 07:55:15 AM »
My experience has been that the design process takes the longest, if you're like me, and can't make up your mind quickly!  ;D Also, I've requested some things that David has had to check with the designers to see if my idea can be done or if they have different designs for us to consider.   ::)  Ultimately, the design process goes on for a month or two until I'm sure about the final design.  Sometimes you've got to get samples of side stones if they're not in stock or if they're unusual.  If David has to search for a unique stone or melee, that could take two to four weeks.   :cross:  Depending on how busy the factory is, getting a wax takes about a week to ten days but it could take longer around holidays, conventions, or if they are really backed up.   :Whistle:  If you request changes, then you've got to wait again as a new wax is made until you're happy with it.   :)
Once you have the stones and the final wax, it can take three to four weeks for the factory to manufacture your piece.   :waiting:  
So I guess on average, it's taken about four months from inception to final product for me but it's certainly worth the wait!   :4:

Mikla
« Last Edit: June 25, 2009, 08:08:31 AM by Mikla »
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Offline oldmancoyote

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Re: What does take to get a custom DBL piece?
« Reply #2 on: June 25, 2009, 08:11:49 AM »
Agree, give or take a week...

Offline Trinkette

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Re: What does take to get a custom DBL piece?
« Reply #3 on: June 25, 2009, 09:39:31 AM »
I'd add that in general, especially in the jewelry business, the process can take longer during the pre-holiday weeks (not now, of course  ;) ) than it might during other times of the year.

Offline ah2bqat

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Re: What does take to get a custom DBL piece?
« Reply #4 on: June 25, 2009, 10:13:48 AM »
Thanks, so much Mikla, OMC, and Trinkette.  This is precisely the information for which I was looking. :Wave:
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Offline Diamondsbylauren

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Re: What does take to get a custom DBL piece?
« Reply #5 on: June 25, 2009, 01:55:06 PM »
Thank you so much Mikla OMC and Trinkette!

To BLOOOOquat....I swear, we're related or something!

Just yesterday I was thinking how we need to have a thread talking about the process for custom making a ring!

There's no one simple answer- so let's go over some possibilities..
In many cases, people want something similar to what we already have.
if it's a three stone ring, for example, the entire process can take about 2 weeks. In a very busy time, that can go to 3-4 weeks.
Some custom made rings- such as a double baguette model- may be built in less time- about a week.

But we're by no means limited to making things similar to what we've made before.

In many cases, clients will send a photo of a ring they wish to recreate.

Sometimes this is a very straightforward process- other times it requires us to "fill in the blanks"
A photo may give the flavor of the piece, but there may be mechanical realities that need to be overcome.

The longer time-frames mentioned by OMC and Mikla result from the necessity of re-designing the wax model once the client has a look.
Or in some cases, like the BLOOO ring- we need to actually design the model to then see that certain aspects need to be changed. We had intended to be framing the half moons with microset diamonds- but once we actually made the parts ( in wax) we found that the half moons would be too small- so we eliminated the micro-setting around them. That in turn requires us to redesign the entire bottom of the ring.

I'll be posting some photos and more details about how this process works.
David
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Offline ah2bqat

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Re: What does take to get a custom DBL piece?
« Reply #6 on: June 25, 2009, 02:59:50 PM »
Thanks, David.  :cat:

I knew when you had told me about the change to the side stones, that we had hit a sizable snag.   Since I never had a clue how close BLOOO had gotten to a wax cast, or how long it took to get from design to wax cast, assuming all the best timing in the world, of course; I wasn't sure how much the timeline was impacted.  :icon_scratch: 

So for me,  it's a very good thing to have at least a rough aproximation of the time it takes to make it through each major phase; not to mention the qualifiers for natural timeline extensions like conventions, vacations, major holiday rushes and overload periods.  :tamm:

Of course, we all know I have the patience of a cat on a hot tin roof - but hey!  I'd rather dance a little longer and have the results up to DBL standards.  I know it will be well worth the wait.   :-*
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Offline Diamondsbylauren

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Re: What does take to get a custom DBL piece?
« Reply #7 on: June 25, 2009, 04:45:38 PM »
Bloo- it's not a "snag" at all!
Part of the passion I have for stones like yours, is that they are totally unique.
Let's face it, we could order a solitaire ring for a one carat round and never even look at it - yet still know exactly what it looks like.
Your ring is an ....invention! One of a kind.

I have a rough idea what it will look like- but really not a specific one.
I'm up there on the roof with you!

Let's look at a few wax models to show people what we're talking about
David
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Offline ah2bqat

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Re: What does take to get a custom DBL piece?
« Reply #8 on: June 25, 2009, 06:02:42 PM »
Those are 3 very different models.  Why is the first one so much more detailed, compared to the 2cd one?  ???
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Offline Diamondsbylauren

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Re: What does take to get a custom DBL piece?
« Reply #9 on: June 25, 2009, 06:21:44 PM »
Good question bloooomistress!

It really depends on what the client wants.
Some want the side of the ring to be a simple high polished - and others want detail.
David
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Offline Diamondsbylauren

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Re: What does take to get a custom DBL piece?
« Reply #10 on: June 25, 2009, 06:51:21 PM »
"The Lost Wax Process"

I'll simplify this- mainly because I'm not an expert, but I have a good working understanding.

The lost wax process is one of the main methods used in jewelry manufacture.
The first step involves creating a wax model of the piece. More on how that is done below.
We take the wax model and pour plaster around it.
Then you let the plaster harden.
Then you bake the plaster- melting the wax, and leaving a perfect "impression" of the wax model.
Then molten metal- platinum or gold- is poured into - or injected into- the plaster impression.
After the gold or platinum hardens, the plaster is broken away, and you have your part.

Many of the rings we manufacture have quite a few parts. Unless we craft the part in platinum or gold, by hand, each of them must be created in this manner.
It's far easier to work in wax, which is why most parts are made using the lost wax process.

So- back to creating the wax model.
One method involves using a computer. CAD- Computer Aided Design.
The computer inputs the precise measurements of the diamond, and the ring is designed around it.
There's a lot of rings which are perfectly suited to this type of design. Like anything else, there's people that are far better than others- so quality varies.
Here's a design idea someone sent us. and the wax model we made- after repeated attempts.
It was not an easy one.
This is what we worked off of:



Here's the wax



The second method of working with wax is when it's carved by hand.
There's advantages to both methods.
Hand carving can result in a piece that looks ...handmade.
Some people prefer that look.



David
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Offline Mikla

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Re: What does take to get a custom DBL piece?
« Reply #11 on: June 25, 2009, 07:01:11 PM »
This is very interesting for me.  Wax models #1 and #2 of the three were made for me in David's prior post, reply #7.  They have both changed since these pictures were taken.  That's part of the reason that I estimated about four months.  #1 is being made for my 2.18 W-X which had been previously set in a lovely pendant, which I found I didn't wear much once I had my matching heart pendant and earrings made.  There is a lot of detail in this design, and we had to look for just the right color and size sapphire side stones, which took some time.  They are a lovely pink-purple-violet color.  I am so excited about this one!  8)

#2 is being made for my marquise diamond.  The top had already been manufactured but we faced problems with the width of the band due to the triple shank, so we had to go back to the drawing board a couple of times.  This wax has taken awhile due to the redesign.  The final wax was delivered today as shown in the latest post and I have approved it.  The wax was based on a CAD drawing that my husband did.  Now comes the waiting.  In the words of Tom Petty, "The waiting is the hardest part"!  ;D

I have to add that David will do anything to satisfy the client whether it involves a stock item, a simple reset or a custom design. I couldn't possibly find the pieces that DBL makes for me at any price in a retail store.  I'm a client for life!   :icon_thumleft:

Mikla
« Last Edit: June 25, 2009, 07:19:08 PM by Mikla »
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Offline ah2bqat

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Re: What does take to get a custom DBL piece?
« Reply #12 on: June 25, 2009, 07:53:18 PM »
This is so incredibly cool, Mikla and David; and makes it so much more relevant to know a bit about the projects and the challenges that had to be surmounted.  So what type and color of surprise stones are you planning on using in the 3 stone, Mikla?

So now, I can understand better.  The original design for BLOOO didn't really work out to DBL standards because of the microscopic size of half moons required for a well proportioned, triple halo ring.  That had to happen at almost the end of building the model.   And then using larger, and unframed, side stones made the shoulders need to be changed, as well.  So the bell has rung on round 3 of the design/modelling discovery process. 

I feel sort of sorry for the guys that build the models, or maybe very grateful for their perseverance and dedication to the craft.  I know how frustrated I get when I have to rework a module.  Most times, I'd prefer to toss the whole shebang out and start from scratch.  :-[
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Offline Mikla

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Re: What does take to get a custom DBL piece?
« Reply #13 on: June 25, 2009, 08:17:29 PM »
The surprise stones were eliminated from the design and instead, we are putting scroll work above the bridge.  The side stones are sapphires with a lovely pink-purple-violet color.  I hope you can get a good idea of the color combo from the attached pic.

Mikla

« Last Edit: June 25, 2009, 08:21:11 PM by Mikla »
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Offline ah2bqat

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Re: What does take to get a custom DBL piece?
« Reply #14 on: June 25, 2009, 08:46:54 PM »
 :th_AWA123112:

That is a beautiful combination, Mikla.  I LOVE the color of the sapphires and the rounded trilliant shape.  That is going to be super when it's complete. :4:
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Offline Mikla

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Re: What does take to get a custom DBL piece?
« Reply #15 on: June 25, 2009, 08:57:22 PM »
Thank you!  I obviously loved the combo too.

Mikla
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Offline WM

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Re: What does take to get a custom DBL piece?
« Reply #16 on: June 25, 2009, 11:53:39 PM »
Way cool lesson on wax molds David. It just goes to show you what goes into making a custom ring.

Offline GracefulLion

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Re: Details on the manufacture of custom made DBL Jewelry
« Reply #17 on: June 26, 2009, 10:10:05 AM »
Gorgeous Mikla!!  That is EXACTLY the shape of trills I want to set with a round brown some day!  Fabulous!!

Offline DiamondHunter

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Re: Details on the manufacture of custom made DBL Jewelry
« Reply #18 on: June 28, 2009, 12:27:07 PM »
Gotta agree. Gorgeous hue of purple and curvaceous, that pair of trilliants rock!
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Offline Diamondluvr

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Re: Details on the manufacture of custom made DBL Jewelry
« Reply #19 on: June 29, 2009, 12:36:48 PM »
Thanks for all the info David-so interesting :)

Mikla!  I love the yellow/purple combo-that will be a gorgeous ring!!!

The 3rd wax David posted is mine, it is Pink Lady's new home  ;)  I am super excited to see and wear the finished ring!  It isn't most peoples taste, but I really love the new design.  It was originally going to be a split shank, but it sounds like it needed more durability for the kites-so the designer came up with the 'V' depression in the shank---I really love the new look!!!  Here are the other views of the wax...
« Last Edit: June 29, 2009, 12:39:49 PM by Diamondluvr »
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Offline Diamondsbylauren

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Re: Details on the manufacture of custom made DBL Jewelry
« Reply #20 on: June 29, 2009, 12:47:45 PM »
Thanks DL!

Part of the really interesting part of these type of jobs is the "translation"

When DL sent the design ideas, the shank was as you see it now- kind of square on the outside as opposed to totally rounded- but slightly more exaggerated.
Our main designer in this case is a woman- and she used the idea DL had, but gave it a more practical overall outline- softened it up a bit.
Of course we were thrilled when DL approved the look.
Now it's a bit of a waiting game.
As this is a total one of a kind ring, we've never made one before- and we're ALL very excited to see the finished product!!
David
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Offline Diamondluvr

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Re: Details on the manufacture of custom made DBL Jewelry
« Reply #21 on: June 29, 2009, 12:52:35 PM »
 :Wave:  Hey David!

The translation part has to be a tough one on your end sometimes, because even with my poor drawings sent to you, the profile of the wax/ring is exactly what I envisioned and was trying to emulate all along with the angled shoulders and squared off shank :)

I can't wait to see how it turns out!!!
« Last Edit: June 29, 2009, 12:53:36 PM by Diamondluvr »
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Offline annie1

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Re: Details on the manufacture of custom made DBL Jewelry
« Reply #22 on: June 29, 2009, 01:04:14 PM »
Very interesting information about how the process takes place! 


Mikla - I LOVE the color combo!


DL - I think the kites are the perfect compliment to the Pink Lady.  I can't wait to see the finished product!
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Offline ah2bqat

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Re: Details on the manufacture of custom made DBL Jewelry
« Reply #23 on: June 29, 2009, 06:10:50 PM »
DL, that is a super fantastic ring you're making.  Those kite sidestone are wild! I was wondering if the high shoulders were going to be carved, but I didn't realize it was for a 3 stone.  I can't wait to see the finished project.
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Offline Mikla

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Re: Details on the manufacture of custom made DBL Jewelry
« Reply #24 on: June 29, 2009, 08:29:51 PM »
DL, that's going to be awesome!!  Are the kites going to be set flush into the shoulders with prongs or a bezel? The graduated, angled shoulders really do put the focus on the pear shape so it looks smooth and elegant; the center of the universe!  I LOVE this diamond and the kites are just over the top.  This is going to be a stunning ring and I can't wait to see how it turns out!

 :gogirl5:  Mikla
« Last Edit: June 29, 2009, 08:46:43 PM by Mikla »
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