CRAFT Video: Intro to Metalworking

Becky Stern

Becky Stern (sternlab.org is a DIY guru and director of wearable electronics at Adafruit. She publishes a new project video every week and hosts a live show on YouTube. Formerly Becky was Senior Video Producer for MAKE. Becky lives in Brooklyn, NY and belongs to art groups Free Art & Technology (“release early, often, and with rap music”) and Madagascar Institute (“fear is never boring”).

50 Articles

By Becky Stern

Becky Stern (sternlab.org is a DIY guru and director of wearable electronics at Adafruit. She publishes a new project video every week and hosts a live show on YouTube. Formerly Becky was Senior Video Producer for MAKE. Becky lives in Brooklyn, NY and belongs to art groups Free Art & Technology (“release early, often, and with rap music”) and Madagascar Institute (“fear is never boring”).

50 Articles

This week on the CRAFT Video learn some basics of fine metalworking. With a few simple tools, you can create neat shapes from copper (or silver or brass) sheet and add some fun texture. I made this copper and silver “triple bypass” get-well card for MAKE Senior Editor Gareth Branwyn, who’s recovering from surgery.

Subscribe to the CRAFT Podcast in iTunes, or download the m4v video.

Materials and tools:

  • jeweler’s saw frame with extra blades
  • copper sheet
  • jeweler’s files
  • wet-dry sandpaper, 400 grit (hardware store)
  • design on standard printer paper
  • rubber cement
  • copper etchant (ferric chloride or sodium persulfate)
  • various sized permanent markers
  • acetone or denatured alcohol (hardware store)
  • conti crayon and/or colored pencils
  • silver wire
  • Dremel or other handheld rotary tool
  • drill bit
  • ball-peen hammer
  • scrap wood
  • steel surface for hammering
  • pliers and wire cutters

Most of these jewelry supplies can be ordered from Rio Grande. Check online to find a local jewelry supply shop, since they’re usually really knowledgeable and helpful. If you live around Phoenix, AZ, try Lonnie’s.

For more cool metalwork, check out our metalwork archive.


garsheart.png