ADDRESS

PO Box 1432
Ann Arbor, MI, 48106

PHONE

800-852-3860

Argentium® Wire – Wrap it – Maille it

At G&S Metals we sell a lot of Argentium® silver round wire! In fact G&S Metals was one of the first to distribute Argentium® silver in the USA. Argentium® round wire is available in 18 different gauges from 2 gauge (6.50mm) to 32 gauge (0.020 mm) in soft and half hard tempers.

Chainmaille Origins


What is it – where did it come from and why is it still here?

Links of round wire form chainmail armor
Chainmaille Armor is still in use today. Maille from modern French, referring to stitch or loop.

Mail, chainmaille or chaimail is a type of armor consisting of small metal rings linked together in a pattern to form a non-penetrable mesh used in war fare. The origins of the word are not fully known. One theory is that it is derived from Latin and another is that it is derived from old French, maillier meaning to hammer. The Celts likely invented chainmaille around 300-500AD.

 

Modern Chainmaille


 Wire Selection

Wire selection is the first important step. Selection of wire, color and gauge is determined by your design, your customers’ desires and  their price range. Knowing your customer will increase your jewelry sales. Successful sales start with listening for your customer’s needs. Based on those needs, G&S Metals offers a wide selection of Round, Half Round, Square and Flat Wires which will accommodate most designs and pocket books.

SSRWAR18
Argentium Silver Round Wire 18g

Argentium® Round Wire is used for Wire Wrapping, Knitting, Weaving and numerous other projects; it is very popular with Wire Wrappers because of it’s malleability, it’s bright white color and its tarnish resistant properties.

Come with us on a visit to the studio of Mostly Maille’s where Pamela, the owner and jeweler graciously demonstrated her process in the selection of wire and gauges for her designs.

Pamela used G&S Metal’s 18g/1.0 mm Argentium® round wire for this demonstration. She also uses other gauges, types and forms of wire which she chooses depending on her design and customer’s requests.

 

Jump Rings


How to make jump rings for chainmaille, which are transformed into incredibly intricate designs. For this particular design, Pamela is using G&S Metals Argentium® Silver Round wire in a soft temper in 18 gauge, Product ID: SSRWAR18. Making jump rings without the right tool, can be tedious! PEPETOOLS’® Jump Ring Maker provides the following: a coil winder with a key-less chuck, a coil holder, a 1 1/4 inch saw blade, a blade arbor, a #30 hand-piece holder to use with your flexshaft or Foredom® and 20 different size mandrels. Pamela uses clamps to hold down her jump ring maker securely to her work bench.

Jump Ring Maker

Larger mandrels have a pre-drilled hole to insert the wire. Smaller mandrels do not. With smaller mandrels, insert the mandrel and the end of your wire into the chuck and tighten until secure.

The inner diameter of your jump ring will be the size of your mandrel.

Gently hold the Argentium® Round Wire as it winds around the mandrel.

Argentium® wire is coiled around the mandrel

Pamela then carefully attaches the saw blade aligning it with the notch on the Foredom®. Safety Tip: Warning – prior to changing the saw blade on the Foredom®, be sure the power is off.

Changing the saw blade

After the Argentium® wire is coiled, it is placed in a jig that holds the coil in place while cutting.

Burr-Life® is applied to the coil prior to cutting, this lubricant reduces pull and drag of the saw blade, extending its usable life.

 

The blade moves rapidly through the coiled wire.

 

Voila! A container quickly fills with  jump rings.

 

Chainmaille Jewelry


Pamela, walked us through her process of making chainmaille (a process of weaving invented by the Vikings).

Argentium® Celtic Flower Pendent_Mostly Maille
Argentium® round wire, Celtic Flower Pendent, Mostly Maille

Our journey has taken us from medieval times to the 21st century where round wire is transformed into magnificent designs:

Argentium and Rose Gold Filled Tight Infinity Rose Pattern
Argentium® and Rose Gold Filled round wire, Tight Infinity Rose Pattern Bracelet, Mostly Maille

That’s what G&S Metal’s Round Wire can do! And if making all those jump rings is too time consuming, just order them from G&S Metals!