3d Printing a Lapis Ring with the Elegoo Mars

Now, for the long awaited moment.  In this tutorial, I want to show you how it is possible to 3d print jewelry, from scratch using your computer, your 3d Printer, such as the Elegoo Mars, Epax X1 or the Anycubic Photon!  The only item that we are not making is the Gemstone.   In this tutorial, we are going to design a silver ring for a Cabochon piece of Lapis.

What Will You Need?

For this tutorial, let’s make sure you have the following items if you want to make this or something similar.

  1. A Computer running Blender 3d
  2. Elegoo Mars, Anycubic Photon or an Epax X1 3d Printer
  3. Chitubox Slicer on your computer
  4. A Gemstone to work with
  5. Basic Setting and Jewelry Tools
  6. Access to a Casting Service or Casting Equipment
  7. Castable Resin

These are the basic items we use in this tutorial, and you can get them on the site’s shopping cart.

Getting Creative

Being a jeweler can be a tedious job sometimes.  Our days can be filled with repairs from ring sizing, stone replacement to chain repairs.  Sometimes, I’ve even spent the entire day only changing watch batteries!  

On occasion I have a chance to do something wonderful for a customer.  They come to me, ask me to make something that they want, imagined in their minds, or drew on a napkin.  These are the fun days.  I get to use my creative skills to make a one-of-a-kind item for someone who will appreciate the work, and enjoy a piece of jewelry for a very long time.

 

Getting Creative

Being a jeweler can be a tedious job sometimes.  Our days can be filled with repairs from ring sizing, stone replacement to chain repairs.  Sometimes, I’ve even spent the entire day only changing watch batteries!  

On occasion I have a chance to do something wonderful for a customer.  They come to me, ask me to make something that they want, imagined in their minds, or drew on a napkin.  These are the fun days.  I get to use my creative skills to make a one-of-a-kind item for someone who will appreciate the work, and enjoy a piece of jewelry for a very long time.

To get this done for a customer, I’ve worked hard on my skills.  Taking the time and being patient with the tools, items and skills to hopefully bring a bit of skillful perfection to a ring, pendant or other item.  These are happy, creative and fun days!

Using Blender

In this tutorial, I’m not really going to cover blender.  I really think that you need to spend about five hours a week for six weeks to practice with it.  Blender, while complicated as a whole, is simple to use when modeling.  Thats what we do in the Jewelry Industry…  We Model, so don’t let it scare you.  Check out some of my video tutorials on youtube, or click the link to the right for more information on using blender!

3d printed model
3d printed model

Print Quality is Important!

I am telling you this, because I made two copies of this ring, on two different printers.  Once with medium quality settings and one with High Quality settings.  As you can see, the images here reflect the poor print quality that I first printed.  I ended up adjusting the settings until I was sure I would get an almost perfectly smooth model with high detail.  Sadly I forgot to take a picture of it.  

It may take longer to print, but that’s ok.  Let it take as long as it needs.  A ring this size, approximately 29 mm high only takes about 3.5 to 4 hours with high quality results.

3D Printing your Design!

Of course, once you’ve created the design you want, exported it as an STL file, its time to get your 3d printer in gear, and print your design.

it is important that you use a 3d printer that can be used with a Castable Resin that we can burn out for casting in jewelry grade metals.  I have links to these products in this article as well as in the shopping cart.  Feel free to browse the cart for the tools you need.

Follow the settings on your 3d printer, as well as the parameters for the castable resin, and print the best object using the finest settings you can.  Don’t skimp on the quality of your 3d printer.  The worse the print looks, the worse your item is going to cast.  This is important. 

 

FunToDo Casatable Resin Model

Casting, In house or subcontracted!

For us jewelers, casting custom designs is another skill we learn while training.  However, most jewelers do not do casting work.  Most jewelers have neither the time, nor the space to do this work.  Larger shops in your area might do it, or you may be one of the lucky ones who has all the equipment to do casting at hand.  

Some of the equipment used for casting includes the following…

  1. electric furnace
  2. casting centrifuge
  3. investment compound
  4. vacuum equipment to remove air bubbles in the investment
  5. a melting torch or other way to melt the metal

I always say that I will get mine up and running, but I’m way to busy and I find it easier to work with the great people I know who do this work better then I can.  If you have access to casting equipment, great.  If you have to hire someone to do it, thats great too.  There are many companies that only do casting, others that do CAD and casting, and even local people in every city that can do casting on a limited basis for you.

No matter what the case, casting different metals, the different types of equipment, and the quality of the model and investment material are going to greatly influence the quality of the casted item you get back.  

Casted Ring in Silver
Casted Silver Ring before Cleanup

The Finished Product!

Once you have your casting back, make sure that you check the quality.  Look for things that could be problematic such as holes, cracks, errors in the cast mold.  Trust me, you will be able to see all the imperfections of your item.  Don’t let that scare you… Its time to file, saw, clean and polish until you can’t do it anymore.

In the video, you would have noticed that I spent a lot of time sawing.  Your casting will come to you with a sprue on it.  A small piece of metal that is used as waste in casting.  

Your casting is sometimes going to be rough, and you’ll need to take the time to remove each blemish.  Don’t forget all your tools, and prepare to set the stone(s).  This is where things get better.

Silver and Lapis Ring, Stone Set!
Silver and Lapis Ring

The Final Product!

Ok, so, I didn’t do a great job here with the finishing of this ring, but, after I made this video, I spent another hour working on it.  The more time you put into your item, the better it is going to look, the happier the customer will be, and to be honest, the more work you’re going to get.

These are the small things I like to do, make and appreciate, for my customer’s satisfaction.  You, or your customer’s expect high quality and unique items.  These are possible with CAD, 3d printing and some good old fashion skills!

Hi guys, I hope you enjoyed this.  If you want to see more of these tutorials, let me know…

 

Happy Casting!

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