Abby Hook's Spiral Wire End Caps, Findings & Components, Toggles & Clasps, Earwire & Headpin. Spirals, Wire Spiral, Spiral Wire Wrap. End caps are a very useful to add to your arsenal of handmade jewelry findings.
Spiral Wire End Caps
by Abby Hook
  • Category: Findings
  • Technique(s): Making Spirals
  • Skill Level: Beginner
End caps are a very useful to add to your arsenal of handmade jewelry findings. In this tutorial, you learn to make an end cap with a 9mm internal circumference but you can adapt the technique to any size you want, as long as you have a mandrel of the correct size (don't forget that you can use any cylindrical object e.g. pencil, drill bit or kebab skewer!).

Materials

18 Gauge Round Dead Soft 1/10 Sterling Silver Filled Wire
H10-18D
  • Lesson Quantity: 8.00 inches
  • Purchase Quantity: 1.00 1FT
  • Price: $1.27
  • Gold Club Price: $0.95
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Tools

Round Nose Wire Plier
G2-507
  • G2-507
  • Lesson Quantity: 1.00 pieces
  • Purchase Quantity: 1.00 each
  • Price: $32.95
  • Gold Club Price: $24.71
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Chain Nose Wire Plier
G2-508
  • G2-508
  • Lesson Quantity: 1.00 pieces
  • Purchase Quantity: 1.00 each
  • Price: $32.95
  • Gold Club Price: $24.71
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Flat Nose Wire Plier
G2-506
  • G2-506
  • Lesson Quantity: 1.00 pieces
  • Purchase Quantity: 1.00 each
  • Price: $32.95
  • Gold Club Price: $24.71
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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 Nylon Jaw Pliers
G2-35
  • G2-35
  • Lesson Quantity: 1.00 pieces
  • Purchase Quantity: 1.00 each
  • Price: $15.97
  • Gold Club Price: $11.98
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Wubbers Half-Round Mandrel Pliers - Large
PLR-1680
  • PLR-1680
  • Lesson Quantity: 1.00 pieces
  • Purchase Quantity: 1.00 each
  • Price: $42.95
  • Gold Club Price: $32.21
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5 Piece Steel Mandrel Set
G7-5
  • G7-5
  • Lesson Quantity: 1.00 pieces
  • Purchase Quantity: 1.00 each
  • Price: $8.97
  • Gold Club Price: $6.73
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Instructions
Step 1:
Prepare the End Cap
Cut a piece of 18 gauge wire 8" long. Straighten it by grasping one end with the flat nose pliers and pulling through the jaws of the nylon jaw pliers.
Hold the wire against the 6mm mandrel at a 90° angle, with a 1" tail (this will be used to form the spiral top of the cap).

Carefully wrap the wire around the mandrel, ensuring the wire stays at 90° to the mandrel to make sure the wrapping is straight, using the 1" tail to hold the wire in place.
Continue wrapping until you have 7 coils.


Pro Tip: Do not let go of the wire until you have finished coiling, as you will lose the tension on the wire and will have gaps in the coils.
Abby Hook's Spiral Wire End Caps - Prepare the End Cap, Findings & Components, Toggles & Clasps, Earwire & Headpin, Spirals, Wire Spiral, Spiral Wire Wrap, hold the wire against the mandrel
Abby Hook's Spiral Wire End Caps - Prepare the End Cap, Findings & Components, Toggles & Clasps, Earwire & Headpin, Spirals, Wire Spiral, Spiral Wire Wrap, wrap the wire around the mandrel
Abby Hook's Spiral Wire End Caps - Prepare the End Cap, Findings & Components, Toggles & Clasps, Earwire & Headpin, Spirals, Wire Spiral, Spiral Wire Wrap, wrap 7 coils
Step 2:
Form a Spiral
In the 1" tail, form a small loop with the round nose pliers. Trim the tip of the wire off, by holding the flat edge of the flush cutters at a 90° angle to the straight wire from the loop. Notice how this opens the loop up again.
Close the loop by grasping with the round nose pliers and turning the loop.
Grasp the loop with the flat nose pliers and shape the wire around the loop, using the pliers to aid your grip and to help guide the wire into place, by stopping it from overlapping itself.
Return the cap to the mandrel, so that you do not distort the shape while forming the spiral. As the spiral wire gets shorter, slide the cap to the top of the mandrel, to give you room to work.
Continue the spiral until it is the same diameter as the cap, so that it fills the end, approx 2 ½ - 3 rotations (including the loop).
Abby Hook's Spiral Wire End Caps - Form a Spiral, Findings & Components, Toggles & Clasps, Earwire & Headpin, Spirals, Wire Spiral, Spiral Wire Wrap, start a loop
Abby Hook's Spiral Wire End Caps - Form a Spiral, Findings & Components, Toggles & Clasps, Earwire & Headpin, Spirals, Wire Spiral, Spiral Wire Wrap, Form a small loop and trim the tip
Abby Hook's Spiral Wire End Caps - Form a Spiral, Findings & Components, Toggles & Clasps, Earwire & Headpin, Spirals, Wire Spiral, Spiral Wire Wrap, close the loop
Abby Hook's Spiral Wire End Caps - Form a Spiral, Findings & Components, Toggles & Clasps, Earwire & Headpin, Spirals, Wire Spiral, Spiral Wire Wrap, make a spiral
Abby Hook's Spiral Wire End Caps - Form a Spiral, Findings & Components, Toggles & Clasps, Earwire & Headpin, Spirals, Wire Spiral, Spiral Wire Wrap, return the cap to the mandrel
Step 3:
Finish the Cap
Remove the cap from the mandrel and carefully squeeze between the jaws of the nylon jaw pliers, to close the gap between the spiral and the coils.
Note: - Be very gentle, if you squeeze too hard you will squash the cap out of shape.
Trim the tail (approx ¼") from the bottom of the cap. Grasp the tip of the wire with the chain nose pliers, holding the jaws at a 90° angle to the end of the wire
Carefully bend the wire 90° towards the inside of the cap, so that the end is hidden inside.
Note: - This can take a little practice, to get the pressure on the wire just right, so that it bends in the right place, without disturbing the shape of the cap.
Grasp the cap between the thumb and forefinger of your less dominant hand, holding all the coils in place, while you shape the end with the other hand.
Now the cap is shaped, grasp with the nylon jaw pliers once again, in the same way as before, to give one final squeeze, closing all gaps, it also helps to harden the wire in position.
Abby Hook's Spiral Wire End Caps - Finish the Cap, Findings & Components, Toggles & Clasps, Earwire & Headpin, Spirals, Wire Spiral, Spiral Wire Wrap, squeeze the cap with nylon jaw pliers
Abby Hook's Spiral Wire End Caps - Finish the Cap, Findings & Components, Toggles & Clasps, Earwire & Headpin, Spirals, Wire Spiral, Spiral Wire Wrap, trim off the tail
Abby Hook's Spiral Wire End Caps - Finish the Cap, Findings & Components, Toggles & Clasps, Earwire & Headpin, Spirals, Wire Spiral, Spiral Wire Wrap, bend the tail
Abby Hook's Spiral Wire End Caps - Finish the Cap, Findings & Components, Toggles & Clasps, Earwire & Headpin, Spirals, Wire Spiral, Spiral Wire Wrap, give it another squeeze
Abby Hook's Spiral Wire End Caps - Finish the Cap, Findings & Components, Toggles & Clasps, Earwire & Headpin, Spirals, Wire Spiral, Spiral Wire Wrap, finished caps
Abby Hook's Spiral Wire End Caps - Finish the Cap, Findings & Components, Toggles & Clasps, Earwire & Headpin, Spirals, Wire Spiral, Spiral Wire Wrap, spiral wire caps