Judy Larson's Semi Snap-on Bail, Findings & Components, Toggles & Clasps, Earwire & Headpin. Oxidizing Wire, Oxidizing, Antiquing Wire, Antiquing, Texturing, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder. This bail is a perfect addition to pendants that lean toward a more traditional style.
Semi Snap-on Bail
by Judy Larson
  • Category: Findings
  • Technique(s): Oxidizing / Antiquing, Texturing, Butane Torch Techniques
  • Skill Level: Beginner
This bail is a perfect addition to pendants that lean toward a more traditional style. It can take on a more rustic appearance with a little texturing of the center wire and patina.

Materials

24 Gauge Dead Soft Sterling Silver Sheet - 6 Inches
H8-24SM6
  • Lesson Quantity: 1.00 pieces
  • Purchase Quantity: 1.00 1 Inch
  • Price: $21.05
  • Gold Club Price: $15.79
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18 Gauge Round Half Hard .925 Sterling Silver Wire
H8-18H
  • Lesson Quantity: 1.50 inches
  • Purchase Quantity: 1.00 1FT
  • Price: $2.67
  • Gold Club Price: $2.00
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Tools

Silver Solder Paste Soft SS65- 1/4 T.O.
SOL-822.10
  • SOL-822.10
  • Lesson Quantity: 1.00 pieces
  • Purchase Quantity: 1.00 each
  • Price: $16.95
  • Gold Club Price: $12.71
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Blazer Big Buddy Turbo Torch, Black
TRCH-8010
  • TRCH-8010
  • Lesson Quantity: 1.00 pieces
  • Purchase Quantity: 1.00 each
  • Price: $40.00
  • Gold Club Price: $30.00
Out of Stock
Metal Cutting Shears
SHR-536.00
  • SHR-536.00
  • Lesson Quantity: 1.00 pieces
  • Purchase Quantity: 1.00 each
  • Price: $14.97
  • Gold Club Price: $11.23
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Magnesia Soldering Block
SOL-455.00
  • SOL-455.00
  • Lesson Quantity: 1.00 pieces
  • Purchase Quantity: 1.00 each
  • Price: $7.95
  • Gold Club Price: $5.96
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Pickle Pot, 16 Ounces
CLN-584.00
  • CLN-584.00
  • Lesson Quantity: 1.00 pieces
  • Purchase Quantity: 1.00 each
  • Price: $29.95
  • Gold Club Price: $22.46
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Sparex Number 2 Pickling Compound
SOL-802.10
  • SOL-802.10
  • Lesson Quantity: 1.00 pieces
  • Purchase Quantity: 1.00 each
  • Price: $5.95
  • Gold Club Price: $4.46
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Aqui Flux, 1/2 Pint Spray Bottle
SOL-932.03
  • SOL-932.03
  • Lesson Quantity: 1.00 pieces
  • Purchase Quantity: 1.00 each
  • Price: $6.95
  • Gold Club Price: $5.21
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C.H.P Milano Italian Flush Cutter, 5 1/2 Inches
PLR-487.00
  • PLR-487.00
  • Lesson Quantity: 1.00 pieces
  • Purchase Quantity: 1.00 each
  • Price: $14.97
  • Gold Club Price: $11.23
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Premium Steel Bench Block 2 1/2 X 2 1/2
G17-9
  • G17-9
  • Lesson Quantity: 2.00 pieces
  • Purchase Quantity: 2.00 each
  • Price: $15.97
  • Gold Club Price: $11.98
Out of Stock
4 1/2 Inch Flat Nose Prong Making Pliers 1.50mm
G2-84
  • G2-84
  • Lesson Quantity: 2.00 pieces
  • Purchase Quantity: 2.00 each
  • Price: $7.57
  • Gold Club Price: $5.68
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Economy Nylon Jaw Pliers
G2-25
  • G2-25
  • Lesson Quantity: 1.00 pieces
  • Purchase Quantity: 1.00 each
  • Price: $11.97
  • Gold Club Price: $8.98
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6 Step Barrel Plier - Pack of 1
G2-503
  • G2-503
  • Lesson Quantity: 1.00 pieces
  • Purchase Quantity: 1.00 each
  • Price: $18.95
  • Gold Club Price: $14.21
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Liver of Sulphur Gel, 2 Ounce Bottle
SOL-610.02
  • SOL-610.02
  • Lesson Quantity: 1.00 pieces
  • Purchase Quantity: 1.00 each
  • Price: $12.95
  • Gold Club Price: $9.71
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7 Piece Mini TruStrike Hammer Set with Stand
HAM-520.70
  • HAM-520.70
  • Lesson Quantity: 1.00 pieces
  • Purchase Quantity: 1.00 each
  • Price: $140.54
  • Gold Club Price: $105.40
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Instructions
Step 1
Use the photo to draw out the stencil/template for the bail. Consider using the portion cut away as a stencil.
Pro Tip: I prefer to use a stencil, which you draw inside of, rather than a template, which is seen here, to trace designs on sheet metal. When cutting, I cut outside the drawn line. That way, I have an idea of how much needs to be filed away to get the exact design. If I cut inside the line, as would be needed with a template, the design outline would change slightly because it is easier to cut more off than necessary, which might affect the finished project. I then would have no reference lines for refining the edges of the piece.
Judy Larson's Semi Snap-on Bail - , Findings & Components, Toggles & Clasps, Earwire & Headpin, Oxidizing Wire, Oxidizing, Antiquing Wire, Antiquing, Texturing, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, snap on bail
Judy Larson's Semi Snap-on Bail - , Findings & Components, Toggles & Clasps, Earwire & Headpin, Oxidizing Wire, Oxidizing, Antiquing Wire, Antiquing, Texturing, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, snap on bail
Step 2
The bail was purposely cut out before texturing so it would be obvious why this is not the thing to do. Texture lines going across the bail using the narrower side of a Mini TruStrike Sharp Designer Hammer. Notice that the bail expands in size and curves when it is textured. The design then needs to be re-traced and cut out again. It would be easier to cut a piece of sheet metal ½" x 1½" and texture across it. Trace the bail design onto the textured metal and cut it out. Note: Draw a line down the center of the sheet metal if the texturing hammer does not have a wide enough face to go completely across it. Texture on either side of the center line. Center the template on the center line and draw around it. The line on either end of the bail does not need to be centered.
Judy Larson's Semi Snap-on Bail - , Findings & Components, Toggles & Clasps, Earwire & Headpin, Oxidizing Wire, Oxidizing, Antiquing Wire, Antiquing, Texturing, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, snap on bail
Step 3
Anneal, pickle and dry the piece.
Pro Tip: Squeaky clean metal equals successful solder joins. Every time you use a torch to fuse, solder or ball wire ends or work on sheet metal, fire scale develops. It is necessary to pickle these pieces to remove the fire scale so each succeeding solder join is successful. If pickling is not necessary, rubbing alcohol can be used to remove finger oils, etc., from finished pieces before soldering.
Step 4
The piece must be perfectly flat. Place it in the center of a bench block. Place another bench block on top of the bail strip, catty (or kitty) corner. Doing this makes it easier to pick the top block up with the fingers of two hands. Pick the block up a half inch or so and evenly, forcefully and quickly push the top block down onto the metal piece. Flip the it over and repeat the process if needed.
Step 5
Clean, straighten and cut a 1-3/8" long piece of 18 gauge wire. If it is not perfectly straight, straighten it by rolling it back and forth between two bench blocks.
Pro Tip: Leave a little wire hanging over the edge of the bench block so you can tell if the wire is rolling or not. If it is not, you may need to hand straighten it a bit, then roll between the blocks again. If the wire was handled too much, it may need to be cleaned again.
Judy Larson's Semi Snap-on Bail - , Findings & Components, Toggles & Clasps, Earwire & Headpin, Oxidizing Wire, Oxidizing, Antiquing Wire, Antiquing, Texturing, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, snap on bail
Judy Larson's Semi Snap-on Bail - , Findings & Components, Toggles & Clasps, Earwire & Headpin, Oxidizing Wire, Oxidizing, Antiquing Wire, Antiquing, Texturing, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, snap on bail
Step 6
Use a clean titanium solder pick to place small amounts of easy paste solder down the center of the bail. Place the wire on top of the solder, making sure it is centered in the wider section of the bail and towards the front, the longer of the two ends. The wire will hang over both ends of the bail.
Judy Larson's Semi Snap-on Bail - , Findings & Components, Toggles & Clasps, Earwire & Headpin, Oxidizing Wire, Oxidizing, Antiquing Wire, Antiquing, Texturing, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, snap on bail
Step 7
Use the butane torch to evenly heat the piece, moving the torch around the piece, until the solder flows. Immediately remove the torch.
Step 8
Trim off the excess wire hanging beyond the ends of the bail. File the wire ends down flush with the sheet metal. Use a file to round the ends.
Judy Larson's Semi Snap-on Bail - , Findings & Components, Toggles & Clasps, Earwire & Headpin, Oxidizing Wire, Oxidizing, Antiquing Wire, Antiquing, Texturing, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, snap on bail
Step 9
If desired, use the sharp texturing hammer to make a few dents along the wire for added interest.
Step 10
Place the bezel on a raised surface, long end out. Slide the pendant on the end. The edges of the bezel need to be filed back until the pendant can be pushed in to a distance of 3/8".
Judy Larson's Semi Snap-on Bail - , Findings & Components, Toggles & Clasps, Earwire & Headpin, Oxidizing Wire, Oxidizing, Antiquing Wire, Antiquing, Texturing, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, snap on bail
Step 11
Refine the filed edges and wire with 320, 400, 600, 1200 and then 2000 grit sandpaper.
Judy Larson's Semi Snap-on Bail - , Findings & Components, Toggles & Clasps, Earwire & Headpin, Oxidizing Wire, Oxidizing, Antiquing Wire, Antiquing, Texturing, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, snap on bail
Step 12
Use the larger of the two outer sections of the 6-step barrel pliers to make a loop on this end. Be careful to not squeeze the jaws too tightly. This is a relatively heavy bail, so it may be desirable to attach an unfinished pendant before closing the loop. Use a soft jaw pliers to close the loop. Or, leave this loop slightly open to attach to different pendants over time.
Judy Larson's Semi Snap-on Bail - , Findings & Components, Toggles & Clasps, Earwire & Headpin, Oxidizing Wire, Oxidizing, Antiquing Wire, Antiquing, Texturing, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, snap on bail
Judy Larson's Semi Snap-on Bail - , Findings & Components, Toggles & Clasps, Earwire & Headpin, Oxidizing Wire, Oxidizing, Antiquing Wire, Antiquing, Texturing, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, snap on bail
Judy Larson's Semi Snap-on Bail - , Findings & Components, Toggles & Clasps, Earwire & Headpin, Oxidizing Wire, Oxidizing, Antiquing Wire, Antiquing, Texturing, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, snap on bail
Step 13
Bend the bail over the smaller of the two center section of the 6-step barrel pliers. Be careful to not squeeze the jaws to tightly. Close the gap using soft jaw pliers to avoid scratching the metal. Or, leave open to attach to a pendant at a later time.
Judy Larson's Semi Snap-on Bail - , Findings & Components, Toggles & Clasps, Earwire & Headpin, Oxidizing Wire, Oxidizing, Antiquing Wire, Antiquing, Texturing, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, snap on bail
Judy Larson's Semi Snap-on Bail - , Findings & Components, Toggles & Clasps, Earwire & Headpin, Oxidizing Wire, Oxidizing, Antiquing Wire, Antiquing, Texturing, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, snap on bail
Step 14
This step is better done after the bail is attached to a pendant and closed. Start as close to the bottom of the bail as possible. Grasp the bail with two flat nosed pliers, the tips directly across from each other and pushed tightly against the center wire. Bend both pliers up. Keep moving up the bail until close to the top curve. Switch to narrow jaw chain nose pliers to bend the curved portion. Round nosed pliers can also be used. The metal can be easily scratched and dented, so be careful.
Judy Larson's Semi Snap-on Bail - , Findings & Components, Toggles & Clasps, Earwire & Headpin, Oxidizing Wire, Oxidizing, Antiquing Wire, Antiquing, Texturing, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, snap on bail
Judy Larson's Semi Snap-on Bail - , Findings & Components, Toggles & Clasps, Earwire & Headpin, Oxidizing Wire, Oxidizing, Antiquing Wire, Antiquing, Texturing, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, snap on bail
Step 15
Tumble the bail in steel shot and water with a drop of dish liquid to bring up a nice shine and work harden the piece.
Step 16
Leave the piece bright and shiny or use liver of sulfur to patina it. Buff with 0000 steel wool to bring out the dimension of your texturing.
Step 17
Buffing with steel wool creates a satin finish on the metal. Tumbling for 30 minutes will bring back the shine
Judy Larson's Semi Snap-on Bail - , Findings & Components, Toggles & Clasps, Earwire & Headpin, Oxidizing Wire, Oxidizing, Antiquing Wire, Antiquing, Texturing, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, snap on bail
Judy Larson's Semi Snap-on Bail - , Findings & Components, Toggles & Clasps, Earwire & Headpin, Oxidizing Wire, Oxidizing, Antiquing Wire, Antiquing, Texturing, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, snap on bail