Thursday, February 14, 2008

Tucson - Feb. 10th

I started the morning in a seminar at the Hilton East - Innovative Uses of the Hydraulic Press for Jewelry Manufacturing with Phil Poirier - This seminar covers all sorts of metal forming techniques available using a hydraulic press. The presentation progresses from simple tasks (silhouette die forming, bracelet forming and blanking) to complex techniques (deep drawing and the use of conforming dies.) At the end Phil concludes with a live demonstration using the Bonny Doon Mark III press to demonstrate live - the techniques covered in the presentation.

Phil Poirier has spent 35 years as a goldsmith and 24 years designing and engineering tools for the jewelry industry specifically for hydraulic presses. He is the current owner/operator of Bonny Doon in Taos, New Mexico. The company develops and markets hydraulic forming and tooling systems for the jewelry industry.

I am telling you I am hooked on this machine – the possibilities are endless...

That’s as much inside as I can stand – back out to the Electric Park...

Maybe it’s my hippy upbringing (I am after all a child of the 60’s) – but I really love the atmosphere at the TEP.
I offered to help Hans out this year so you will see several posts from TEP.

There are three sessions a day at 11am, 1:30pm and 3:30pm the class topics vary with something for every one.

11:00 am: Tips and Techniques for Cutting Molds with John Henkil of Castaldo. Every mold cutter has his favorite techniques, and John Henkil has been acquiring and studying these for some three decades. For fifteen years he's been demonstrating for Castaldo products.

This was a very informational demonstration. John didn’t just talk about the different ways of cutting a mold. He went into the pros and cons of the various types of molds and then did a hands demo of cutting techniques that could be utilized in different situations.

I sometimes think that cutting the mold is as much an art form as designing the piece in the mold.

Brad Simon Presents...

Ok – this is an exciting announcement... ALL NEW!!!! TV Channel all about Jewelry Making!!!!

If you're looking for jewelry training or in depth exposure to the techniques and the world of jewelry making, there's a new television channel which will focus on just that.

Initiated by Brad Simon and slated to debut in January 2008, Bench Jewelers Television Network will be a full TV network with different channels of interest to bench jewelers and will be aired over the Internet.

Channels will include, Shop Management, Stone Setting, Jewelry Repair, Custom Manufacturing, Platinum, Laser Welding, Bench Techniques, New Products, and more.

We all know Brad Simon from his publications that have always been free to users...E Bench Newsletter ( and the Bench Magazine.

Now there is Bench Television go – check it out there are free previews on several of the channels to whet your interest... when you see the videos and the quality of the work, and the level of the expertise gathered to teach, you will understand why there is a fee for the service. For an annual subscription to the service it is $125...there will be a monthly offer at a later date - this is for unlimited access to ALL channels.

BTW – check out all the great features at the next Bench Conference ( ) in Los Angeles, California! I hope to see you all there!

Thanks Brad for always sharing!

The Use of the Graver in Diamond Setting with Gerry Lewy's name will be known to many in the jewelry trade under his nickname "Gerry the Cybersetter." Today Gerry comes back with a repeat of Thursday's session, covering all aspects of the use of gravers in the discipline of diamond setting.

Gerry uses sample rings in various stages of completion, so that by seeing the incomplete setting, he says, "each person will then understand how the setting practice is furthered." He also utilizes photographs of different types of diamond setting, his instructional CD's and gravers for sale at the Learning Center, as well as free instructional handouts.
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