Wednesday, July 30, 2008

my old flame

On Saturday, July 19th Daphne and I, along with a few friends (including our officiant Jeffrey) got together with Cindi at Goldmine to cast my ring. Jewelry design may involve computers and CNC machines these days, but executing the design for my ring meant following processes that have been around for centuries. Here's a little about how it was done (as I understand it, anyway).

First the crucible is heated up, then a plaster mold made from the wax model is inserted. Next, the gold is melted with the torch until it's ready to flow. At that point the latch is released on the centrifuge and the whole shebang spins around. This forces the metal into the mold and helps it flow into all of the spaces in the design.

Once the device has spun for a while the mold is removed and plunged into a cold water bath. The shock makes quick work of the plaster. It's a strange and wonderful feeling to plunge your hand into a vat of murky water and pull out your wedding ring.

Of course, there was a bit of cleanup and finish work to do (including electroplating, which is another interesting process), but a week later we picked it up. I can't wait to wear it.

Here's a little video I took. It's nice that Daphne still carries a torch for me after all these years. Don't you agree?

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