Ring Mandrels
by Judy Larson
Rings can be formed and shaped or reshaped on ring mandrels, also known as triblets. Mandrels are made in a variety of materials, each having their own use. The first ring mandrel most people purchase is a graduated stainless steel ring mandrel with sizes 1 through 15. It will last a lifetime.
Instructions
Most ring mandrels are marked with whole sizes in numbers and quarter sizes in lines between the whole sizes. Very few ring mandrels are marked with only lines, not sizes.
Judy Larson's Ring Mandrels - , Tools For Wire Jewelry, Tools, ring mandrels
A stepped ring mandrel will not allow a ring to slide down the shaft during shaping. They are generally stepped in whole sizes, so half and custom sizes are very difficult to make on them.

Some ring mandrels have a groove down one size. If there is a stone in the ring being worked on, the stone or setting is placed over the groove to help protect it during the hammering/shaping or the ring shank. Since these plastic ring mandrels were very inexpensive, I would purchase many at a time and gift them with beads and extra wire to school students when I would teach a wire wrapped ring class for an hour. The groove helps hold the bead in place while wrapping the wire around the mandrel in the size needed.
Judy Larson's Ring Mandrels - , Tools For Wire Jewelry, Tools, ring mandrels
When making rings, the band will most likely be a bit misshapen when done. Sliding the ring onto a graduated ring mandrel and tapping the band with a rawhide mallet or a small rubber/nylon mallet will help make it round. It is important to flip a ring over on the mandrel frequently to avoid making the ring cone shaped and have a more even fit. Flipping the ring over on the mandrel during shaping is especially important the wider the ring band is.
Judy Larson's Ring Mandrels - , Tools For Wire Jewelry, Tools, ring mandrels
Judy Larson's Ring Mandrels - , Tools For Wire Jewelry, Tools, ring mandrels
Not all graduated ring mandrels are shaped the same, but they are mostly pretty accurate with sizing. When forming wider bands, a longer, narrower ring mandrel, such as the one on the left, may be easier to work with. It requires less flipping of the ring on the mandrel.
Judy Larson's Ring Mandrels - , Tools For Wire Jewelry, Tools, ring mandrels
A 360 Degree Ring Mandrel Vise can be an invaluable tool. Securing a ring mandrel in the vise, which can be secured to the work surface, will free both hands to work on a ring.
Judy Larson's Ring Mandrels - , Tools For Wire Jewelry, Tools, ring mandrels
Judy Larson's Ring Mandrels - , Tools For Wire Jewelry, Tools, ring mandrels
How to size a ring on a ring mandrel

When making narrow band rings, usually under ¼" wide, the bottom edge of the ring band should touch the top edge of the line of the desired size, not overlap it, on the ring mandrel. A hair above or below the line would be acceptable as well, but try for the bottom edge of the ring to touch the line. This ring band is sized to a 6.
Judy Larson's Ring Mandrels - , Tools For Wire Jewelry, Tools, ring mandrels
When making wider band rings, the midline of the ring band should be centered over the line of the desired size. This ring is a sized to a 6.
Judy Larson's Ring Mandrels - , Tools For Wire Jewelry, Tools, ring mandrels
There are always exceptions. I wear a size 5¾ ring on the ring finger on my right hand. Both the rings here fit my finger exactly the same. Notice the center of the band of the green stone ring is on a size 5¾ but the leading edge of the ring is a bit over a size 6. The other ring sits on the mandrel at a size 5½ because of the room taken up by the stone cluster on the top of the ring.
Judy Larson's Ring Mandrels - , Tools For Wire Jewelry, Tools, ring mandrels
Judy Larson's Ring Mandrels - , Tools For Wire Jewelry, Tools, ring mandrels

Materials

No materials listed

Tools

360 Degree Mandrel Vise with Mandrel
G7-11
  • G7-11
  • Lesson Quantity: 1.00 pieces
  • Purchase Quantity: 1.00 each
  • Price: $43.95
  • Gold Club Price: $32.96
Add to Bag
PROFESSIONAL QUALITY RING MANDREL 1-16
MAN-295.00
  • MAN-295.00
  • Lesson Quantity: 1.00 pieces
  • Purchase Quantity: 1.00 each
  • Price: $24.95
  • Gold Club Price: $18.71
Add to Bag
Stepped Ring Mandrel on Base
MAN-139.00
  • MAN-139.00
  • Lesson Quantity: 1.00 pieces
  • Purchase Quantity: 1.00 each
  • Price: $26.57
  • Gold Club Price: $19.93
Out of Stock
Wood Ring Mandrel - Pack of 1
G7-55
  • G7-55
  • Lesson Quantity: 1.00 pieces
  • Purchase Quantity: 1.00 each
  • Price: $11.95
  • Gold Club Price: $8.96
Add to Bag
Add All Items to Cart
  • Category: Tools
  • Technique(s): Tools