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Topic: I can't close these jump rings!  (Read 1081 times)
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msminnamouse
« on: January 21, 2012 10:33:51 PM »

I ordered "STAINLESS STEEL SAW CUT JUMP RINGS 18 SWG .045" - 1/4'' ID" from Ebay. I can't close them!

Auction said:
Quote
STAINLESS STEEL SAW CUT JUMP RINGS 18 SWG (.045")  1/4 '' ID

Saw Cut Jump Rings Made From 308 Stainless Steel A Very Strong Alloy And Very Shinny

I coil the wire and cut the rings with a .008'' thick jewelers blade. This leaves a very nice cut edge for tight closures, a must for chainmaille, jewelry, and armor making!

They are washed, tumbled and then washed again. This cleans and polishes the rings to a brilliant shine!

18 swg 1/4'' Open Jump Rings actual dimensions are as listed...........

18 S.W.G (STANDARD WIRE GAUGE)   .045''

Inside Diameter  .28''  7mm

Outside Diameter  .37''  9.4mm

A.R. (ASPECT RATIO)   6.2

Not all of that means much to me but I'm trying to provide as much info as possible to see if it's the jump rings that are the problem or if I'm the problem. I'm new to this and don't have any experience with jump rings.

I watched Youtube videos and I know to pull them sideways and to push them back together sideways, back and forth, but they won't close when I do that or when I push them together using pliers that have a round indent for closing rings. I even tried filing the inside just in case the ends were't flat but they still won't close. I can't even get anywhere near a tight fit, the ends don't even touch and when I'm working with them, they often go flying. I tried using a bunch of different pliers, including sharp ended ones and flat ended ones together but it's a no go.

Help?
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Jessiemessy
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« Reply #1 on: January 31, 2012 12:12:38 PM »

I went through the same problem!! no sweat, it really depends what your doing, try to imagine opening the rings like you would a zipper(one side still as the other pulls towards or away from you) not like you would a chip bag(<-> forcing them apart) forcing them apart, your literally bending metal and will have a heck of a time putting them together again. And make sure you don't twist the rings anymore than you need to (max, about the thickness of the ring x2) this makes it easier to put back together. Tongue
Try this way, and if it still doesn't work try going to a higher gauge (higher the thinner the wire lower the thicker) go to like 20 gauge and see if that works better and maybe to a cheaper and more flexible wire like aluminum if your just practicing...  Wink
Also it could be your pliers, i find the flat nosed (tip shaped like a D) ones easier to work with than the round nose(tip shaped like an O), the round ones i find to slip a lot.
When putting the rings back together, do the little wiggle thing, but push the two ends together wile you do it....

Get back to me if this doesn't work, i love Chain maille and i hope that you get into it and enjoy it, because its a great rainy day project, as well as a time consuming one... best of wishes! And good luck! Cheesy
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msminnamouse
« Reply #2 on: February 14, 2012 11:11:45 PM »

I still can't close them. Sad
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Blacksmith
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« Reply #3 on: February 19, 2012 01:25:24 PM »

Sounds like the metal needs to be annealed. Heat up to a red or yellow heat and allow to cool, should be much easier to work after you anneal them. You can do this with a propane torch.
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msminnamouse
« Reply #4 on: February 22, 2012 05:47:12 PM »

Thanks!!!!!
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Blacksmith
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« Reply #5 on: March 01, 2012 06:16:08 AM »

A point to remember, when you anneal those rings they are going to be softer, probably much softer. These rings are likely made out of 308 or 308L stainless steel, which is a work hardened material, so while you are able to close them, you will lose a great deal of strength in the metal in doing so. I've got a couple tricks for making jump rings, including making them out of SS, cheaply. I'll dig around and see if I have all the stuff to do a quick tutorial on it for you.
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The bureaucracy is expanding to meet the needs of an expanding bureaucracy.-Oscar Wilde

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msminnamouse
« Reply #6 on: March 01, 2012 11:17:33 PM »

Thanks! That would be so great! I have trouble finding SS wire locally though except for the braided type. Where do you buy yours?

I'm probably not annealing them right because only the ends are turning red. Nothing can be simple, can it?
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« Reply #7 on: March 02, 2012 02:49:00 AM »

Welding supply companies, I love em to death and the guys behind the counter know a great deal usually, so ask them questions about metals. I've yet to meet one that won't jabber with me. They carry spools of 308 stainless wire for mig welding, but it does fine for making things.

So, only dull red heat? Only on the ends?
I'm guessing you're holding them with pliers, right? If so then those pliers are acting as a heat sink and there is too much mass there for them to get up to heat. String the rings on a piece of wire that is just a hair bigger than the opening on them, after all if these are 18 gauge, then they should get yellow pretty quick.

What kind of torch are you using?
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The bureaucracy is expanding to meet the needs of an expanding bureaucracy.-Oscar Wilde

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