What Wire Gauge Should I Use

by Denise Peck
Here's a good little cheat sheet if you're wondering what gauge wire would be best for the project you're working on. As you know, the lower the number gauge, the thicker the wire, and higher the number the thinner. Anything thicker than 14-gauge will be a challenge to work with, though I'm not discouraging you! Just have some good tools and a substantial design in mind.
Instructions
14-gauge is a good size for strong clasps, bangle bracelets, and substantial links for chain.

16-gauge is also good for clasps and bangles and heavy rings or links.

18-gauge can be used for clasps, but you must work harden the wire when you're finished so they're strong enough to hold their shape. It's also good for head pins for some beads (none with tiny holes, though). It's good for wire wrapping and making jump rings. Sometimes you may make ear wires from 18-gauge, but some people can't wear that thickness in their ears.

20-gauge is perfect for ear wires. Some people may also buy 21-gauge for ear wires, but it's a bit harder to source. 20-gauge is also good for head pins, eye pins and jump rings.

22-gauge is a good size for head pins and eye pins for small beads, and for wire wrapped loops.

24-gauge is perfect for Viking knit, and wire weaving. And for making wrapped loop links with beads.

26-gauge can be used for finer Viking knit, and for crocheting and wire weaving. And for head pins for very small-holed beads.

28-gauge is great for wire crochet and wire weaving.
Denise Peck's What Wire Gauge Should I Use - , General Education, , round sterling silver

Materials

10 Gauge Round Dead Soft 14/20 Rose Gold Filled Wire
H6-10D
  • Lesson Quantity: 1.00 pieces
  • Purchase Quantity: 1.00 1FT
  • Price: $63.88
  • Gold Club Price: $47.91
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16 Gauge Round Dead Soft .925 Sterling Silver Wire
H8-16D
  • Lesson Quantity: 1.00 pieces
  • Purchase Quantity: 1.00 1FT
  • Price: $7.21
  • Gold Club Price: $5.41
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18 Gauge Round Dead Soft Argentium .940 Silver Wire
H19-18D
  • Lesson Quantity: 1.00 pieces
  • Purchase Quantity: 1.00 1FT
  • Price: $4.68
  • Gold Club Price: $3.51
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20 Gauge Round Dead Soft Copper Wire
H11-20D
  • Lesson Quantity: 1.00 pieces
  • Purchase Quantity: 1.00 1FT
  • Price: $0.49
  • Gold Club Price: $0.37
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Wire
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Tools

Round Nose Wire Pliers
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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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: $16.97
  • Gold Club Price: $12.73
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Chain Nose Wire Pliers
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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  • Category: General Education
  • Technique(s): General Education