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Topic: bead hole size?  (Read 910 times)
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« on: March 01, 2007 12:59:14 PM »

Unfortunately, my words are too vague for a decent search, so I have to just ask:

When you're buying beads and wire for a project, how do you make sure the wire will fit into the bead holes?  Is there some kind of standard, "use this gauge for seed beads" kind of thing?

I'm ordering supplies for a library program and am wondering what wire and beads I should get.


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« Reply #1 on: March 01, 2007 02:04:09 PM »

invest in a bead reamer, and hole-troubles will be solved Smiley Otherwise, there is normally little to tell you the size of the hole - pearls, as a rule, have tiny holes, but otherwise it varies a lot.


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« Reply #2 on: March 02, 2007 07:37:07 AM »

depending on where you are getting your beads--- sometimes with seed beads they tell you the gauge on the package, as they do vary.  If you are getting them from a bead store, grab someone and see if they will open them and test them out for you if they arent marked.   Bead reamers wont work for the most part on seed beads, they will just crack apart. All seed beads are pretty small, so maybe just buy the smallest gauge wire that will perform how you want it to-- and see if that works.  Most people use thread of some kind with seed beads.

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« Reply #3 on: March 03, 2007 05:39:04 PM »

Ok. just want to start by saying if you already know this stuff sorry for stating the obvious.  Tongue

Generally with beads, seed beads, pearls and gemstones typically have small holes.

Seed beads are sized from 15 (smallest) to 6 largest (though sometimes you se 5's (which are closer to pony beads)

I have found most seed beads size 11 or bigger will thread on to headpins - (when I have been making earrings etc), which are generally about 20/22 gauge.

Just in case you need it here is a useful wire gauge guide: http://www.wigjig.com/jewelry-tools/WJU/techniques/measures/pg03.htm

and a guide to what gauge to use for different types of projects: http://www.wigjig.com/jewelry-making/pg21.htm

Most beads will have holes big enough for up to about 18 gauge (at least).

Certain types of beads often have larger holes such as Indian beads, wooden beads and many plastic beads.

If you need beads with very large holes (such as for stringing on to leather thong, you need to check carefully. most suppliers note these beads (as being special) as they have larger holes.

If you love to chat about beading come join us at www.uk-beaders.co.uk/forum.htm
Find hundreds of UK based bead suppliers and more at www.uk-beaders.co.uk

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