[The Midnight Gem] Chains That Don't Bind

Kelski works on a special order for The Daggerhand Leader

(This is a thread from Mizahar's fantasy role play forums. Why don't you register today? This message is not shown when you are logged in. Come roleplay with us, it's fun!)

A lawless town of anarchists, built on the ruins of an ancient mining city. [Lore]

Moderator: Regime

[The Midnight Gem] Chains That Don't Bind

Postby Kelski on August 25th, 2018, 5:34 pm

Timestamp: 86th of Summer, 518 A.V.

Kelski had done a lot of work for the Daggerhands recently, with the their masks she’d prepared for several of them - at least those with the coin to bejewel them. But this order was special. It was for someone named Stilletto and it was a custom piece. She read the work order she’d carefully written out when one of the leader’s junior members had come in asking about it.

A bracelet… made of flattened chain so it would lie close to the skin, heavy and firm, gold, with a box clasp and each link etched. She had a list of things the links were etched with, the measurements of the wrist, and how many links the bracelet should contain. Everything was so symbolic and special. The piece would make or break her relationship with the Daggerhands as a business they could depend on.

The Masks had opened the door. But this piece might just seal the deal to a more secure future. Kelski had mixed feelings about working for a gang, but business was business and she sold to everyone. So what made this different? Nothing. It would still be the best work she could produce.

Kelski took a seat at her jewelers bench, work order in hand, and thought about it a bit. A flattened chain? She’d never done one but knew it involved a great deal of labor. Over the course of the season, Kelski had amassed a great deal of ‘wire’. She looked over the order, thought hard, and rose again. Bracelet. Thick metal flattened links. But these would need chunky chains, so she plucked up a thick 4.8mm length of 14k gold wire and took it over to the forge. Lighting it carefully, Kelski laid the wire out on her annealing stone and let it heat until it was glowing visibly red and then pulled it to the side to let it cool. Annealed wire softened, allowing itself to be bent and twisted in all sorts of ways without the wire breaking. So it was best to use for making chain, even big chain, that would take a lot of work for a more delicate woman like herself.

Kelski left the wire to cool and pulled out a 10 mm ball punch that she normally used as either a mandrel or for its intended purpose. She clamped it in her bench mounted vice upright, like a stake, and had it as tight as she could get it. Then she pulled out her jeweler’s saw – which was actually a delicate hacksaw – and pliers. And then she pulled out her soldering set with its torch, flux, solder and pickling solution. With all that laid out, she checked the wire, found it ready to bend, and walked back to retrieve it with her pliers.

Putting her heavy gloves on, she clasped the heavy wire and began to wrap it around her cylinder as tightly as she could manage. She found the process difficult and repeatedly pulled the coil off the punch, reheated it, and then re-wrapped it getting it pulled tighter and tighter each time until she had an almost spring-like looking coil of thick wire.

WC: 526
Image
They laugh at me because I am different.
I laugh at them because they are all the same.
User avatar
Kelski
Feral at heart.
 
Posts: 857
Words: 1100424
Joined roleplay: July 3rd, 2014, 11:08 pm
Location: Sunberth
Race: Kelvic
Character sheet
Storyteller secrets
Plotnotes
Medals: 5
Featured Thread (1) Mizahar Grader (1)
Trailblazer (1) Overlored (1)
Sunberth Seasonal Challenge (1)

[The Midnight Gem] Chains That Don't Bind

Postby Kelski on August 25th, 2018, 5:55 pm

Once she had the coil all in a big line, Kelski pulled it from the mandrel and hefted it, worried at the weight. It would weigh a woman’s wrist down, but a man might find it comforting. Kelski glanced at the work order, checked the measurements, and knew her calculations were correct. This was the size she needed and the amount of links she needed to complete the etchings which would go on the inside of the chain. Taking the entire coil to her bench with its smaller vice, Kelski sat down at her bench and clamped the coin into her vice. Taking the jewelers saw, Kelski began sawing links which fell apart slowly. She collected them In a dish at the top of her bench one by one. To save time, she fit the links in to one another, clamping them tight as she went, forming the chain she’d need.

It took several minutes to assemble the chain. Kelski remembered when she used to worry about chaining wire and making it into true necklaces. Now it was next to nothing to do and she smiled as her links parted and were moved to grow the chain. When she had enough, she set the chain aside and started on a second one just in case the first got ruined or someone spotted her work on the Daggerhand Leader’s wrist and wanted one themselves.

Having two chains sitting side by side finished, Kelski tossed the rest of the extra links into the dish, knowing she’d use them later or they’d go into her scrap to be remelted and made into something else. The metal was very thick so Kelski had to anneal the rough chain multiple times, heating it to soften the metal in order to make it more bendable. She used a set of pliers in each hand to close the links she had sawed open. She made sure the sawed faces of each link lined up flush and perfect in order to ensure the joint would be strong.

Then once closed, she carefully slicked on flux and carefully soldered each link closed with her alcohol torch one by one. She made sure she was super careful, not soldering the links to one another because it restricted their movement. Then she was also super careful, since the links were close together, to not apply heat to joints she’d already formed in order to open or soften them. Then when she was done and the piece cool, she cleaned up the joints with her little files and bits of sand paper, knocking off roughness and smoothing out the pieces.

The next part was harder. She had to anneal the entire chain again, evenly, and clamp it into her big bench vice. She threaded a length of hard iron through the end link, and began twisting the chain while it was still soft and warm, aligning all the chain links in a row and on one equal plane. One side of her chain was captured in her vice and she pulled with her body weight and twisted the chain until it flattened. She annealed twice more before she got the whole thing flat and stretched out between a jig… which was just a flat board with two nails driven into it that the chain was hooked too.

CW: 555
Image
They laugh at me because I am different.
I laugh at them because they are all the same.
User avatar
Kelski
Feral at heart.
 
Posts: 857
Words: 1100424
Joined roleplay: July 3rd, 2014, 11:08 pm
Location: Sunberth
Race: Kelvic
Character sheet
Storyteller secrets
Plotnotes
Medals: 5
Featured Thread (1) Mizahar Grader (1)
Trailblazer (1) Overlored (1)
Sunberth Seasonal Challenge (1)

[The Midnight Gem] Chains That Don't Bind

Postby Kelski on August 25th, 2018, 7:02 pm

Kelski stretched, groaning. She should have fetched Ebon or Aer’wyn to actually help her out in regards to flattening the chain. Broken ribs weren’t conducive to twisting heavy chain, even annealed chain, until it was flat. But there it was, flat, and stretched on a board that was clamped to her workbench… each end loop hooked securely through a nail. She ran her hands over the curved links, then grabbed her light gold rasp. This was where the real work began. The chain needed its heavy links filed down on the top so that they were smooth to run ones hand across where the lay against the wrist and where they shown above.

Each individual link needed the top filed, flattening it, and the Kelvic leaned over the bench and got to work. She had to carefully – standing directly over it – file them flat and not at an angle. Each link had to be done individually, and once she was done with one side, she had to flip the chain and do the other side. It was bells of work, running the file back and forth, making a sprinkling of gold shavings everywhere across the jig as she did so. It was labor intensive and something she disliked because there should have been a faster way, a neater way, but there wasn’t.

Sweat beaded between her shoulder blades, trickled from her hair, and she stopped once to braid the unruly locks and twist it around her scalp and pin it up and out of the way. She ended up opening windows and even had to shush The Midnight Gem itself as the building seemed to lock onto her fatique with concern. Kelski almost cried in relief as she finished one side, jogged upstairs for water and an apple, then came back down and got started on the other side. Bells later, that side was flat too and all she had left to do was carefully sand each link, buffing it on her buffing wheel, to smooth out the rough metal and then sand each facet to ensure the file marks from her rasp and files were gone and no feathered edges remained that could catch on tender skin.

When she was done finally, Kelski was glad to take a break. Her break involved building the box clasp from gold that had been flattened into toughened sheets. Working with sheets beat the heck out of working with the heavy links she had been trying to wrestle around. Kelski wondered, not for the first time, if that was why so many men were jewelers and very few women were.

Kelski stroked the gold sheet and carefully measured a strip of the sheet gold wide enough to match the perimeter of the clasp. She wanted the clasp to be slightly rectangular with a measurement of 20 mm by 15 mm. That meant, as she quickly did the math, that her strip needed to be 70 mm long accounting for the fact she needed two 20 mm sides and two 15 mm ends. She double checked that the width was equal to the width of the chain so her end links could vanish inside the box square equally and a flinger could slide along the chain and box without feeling a bulge or indent where the clasp was. When she was satisfied… she moved to the next step.

CC: 566
Image
They laugh at me because I am different.
I laugh at them because they are all the same.
User avatar
Kelski
Feral at heart.
 
Posts: 857
Words: 1100424
Joined roleplay: July 3rd, 2014, 11:08 pm
Location: Sunberth
Race: Kelvic
Character sheet
Storyteller secrets
Plotnotes
Medals: 5
Featured Thread (1) Mizahar Grader (1)
Trailblazer (1) Overlored (1)
Sunberth Seasonal Challenge (1)

[The Midnight Gem] Chains That Don't Bind

Postby Kelski on August 25th, 2018, 7:41 pm

She measured and then marked the sides of the strip, making marks at 20mm, 35mm, 55mm and 70mm where the corners of the box frame clasp would be. Kelski had never had issues with math, and angles and for some reason jewelcrafting came easy to her especially in the metalsmithing part of it. Then… came the hard part.

She clamped down the strip, and then endeavored what she considered a harder part. She needed to start cutting at the marks, like she was sawing through the metal, but stopping half way. The reason was she would then bend the metal at the halfway cut which would allow it to bend without excess material or bulges making a clean corner edge. The strip she was working on was like the perimeter, a box built that she’d then cover the sides of with the other measured pieces.

Since her cuts were perpendicular to the top and bottom of the strip, she took a hard square made of metal and marked and then cut them. She filed the cuts out, removing the excess scrap, using her square needle file which she kept at a 45 degrees. This created a sharp corner she could bend. Kelski went carefully, cutting until she was just a tiny bit away from cutting through the strip. Then she bent the miters into 90 degree corners. It took forever, but it was precision work that wasn’t hard on her body like twisting the wire had been or pulling the chain flat. However, the work was worth it because the corners looked professional and not at all like someone was just slapping metal together carelessly.

Then she lit her alcohol torch again and began soldering the four corners closed, fluxing them well first so that the joints would hold. This process was also amazing for reinforcing the mitered corners since she filled them full of solder and flux, strengthening them past what they had been as a solid strip of metal.

She then took her file and filed a mouth into the frame opposite of where the clasp would attach to the chain. Then, using more of the sheet gold, she cut a rectangle to act as a lid. She carefully soldered it on and then filed the overhang clean. Then, because the clasp had a button that locked, she had to cut a space for the button to sit on through the mouth and into the roof. She the carefully measured and cut a floor onto the box clasp.

Each clasp had a tongue and a button. Kelski had to make them next. She cut another strip of the gold sheeting, this time just a tad smaller than the box so it could slip inside. She tested the width with the newly fabricated box and then bent it so the tongue would catch the mouth as it was inserted. Kelski cut and filed the button into shape. She used a scrap of gold from the wire links left over, carefully filing it into a square. Kelski had done this using sheets layered or completely out of a thicker sheet metal, but she found using the scrap link was just as good and saved waste.

Once she got that step done, she was ready to solder again.

WC: 548
Image
They laugh at me because I am different.
I laugh at them because they are all the same.
User avatar
Kelski
Feral at heart.
 
Posts: 857
Words: 1100424
Joined roleplay: July 3rd, 2014, 11:08 pm
Location: Sunberth
Race: Kelvic
Character sheet
Storyteller secrets
Plotnotes
Medals: 5
Featured Thread (1) Mizahar Grader (1)
Trailblazer (1) Overlored (1)
Sunberth Seasonal Challenge (1)

[The Midnight Gem] Chains That Don't Bind

Postby Kelski on August 25th, 2018, 8:48 pm

Jewelry clasps were so simple. All the tongue did was slide into the mouth of the box closure when a person pressed it closed and slid it in the opening. It was naturally springing and would open inside the box, causing the button to lock inside the mechanism but stick out of its opening. Then, a person could depress the button which would eject the tongue and open the lock. It was cleverly designed so someone wouldn’t accidently bump it and release the bracelet unaware. It had to be released by clever fingers who knew the trick of it.

So once Kelski cut and filed the button into shape, she soldered it onto the tongue and adjusted the bend in the tongue until she got a satisfying click when she slid it into the box. The bent metal acted just like a spring, holding the clasp securely closed. That meant, to make it tighter or looser, Kelski just had to bend the spring more open or more tightly closed.

Now that her box clasp was done, all she had to do was basically attach the chain to the box clasp polish and be done. The end was definitely in sight… and none to soon. The sun was setting outside. Kelski had been working on this project all day. She stood up, stretched, and walked a circle. Then she resumed her seat, lit her alcohol torch again, and fluxed the loose ends of the chain. She soldered the first two and the last two links of the chain together. This made them solid and inflexible to give the clasp some strength and support against tugging.

Then she cut right through the center of the new solder joint, between where the two main links met, using her jewelers saw. She filed the cut flat and carefully laid the chain out flat, then the box clasp out flat, making sure the right sides were up. Then she carefully soldered the box and the tongue to opposite sides of the chain. She made sure the newly filed flat space was well fluxed and then butted it up against the new face she’d made on the box. Checking to make sure neither the box or the tongue was upside down, she completed the last solder and overlooked her work when the chain cooled.

She liked the fact that there was no awkward gap between a round link and a flat clasp. She’d avoided this by soldering the two links together, and cutting down the middle. It fit smoothly, professionally, and almost looked like a master had done it.

Then she carefully twisted the chain in her hands, looking for vice marks, grip etchings from the pliers, or any sort of jewelcrafting marks still left on them. There was one or two and she carefully sanded them off, treating the gold gingerly. It was, after all, a special piece.

It as almost done. She checked the measurement again to make sure it would fit the wrist size it was headed for and nodded as it exactly fit the size 8 she was aiming for. Then she sat down at her lap wheel, spread green polish on it, and began the fine polish it would need for each link inside and out. She worked down to super fine red polishing dust before the bracelet gleamed. And once she was done, she packaged it up, called Aer’wyn, and had him run it to the address pre-paid on the work order.

WC: 582


Image

.
Image
They laugh at me because I am different.
I laugh at them because they are all the same.
User avatar
Kelski
Feral at heart.
 
Posts: 857
Words: 1100424
Joined roleplay: July 3rd, 2014, 11:08 pm
Location: Sunberth
Race: Kelvic
Character sheet
Storyteller secrets
Plotnotes
Medals: 5
Featured Thread (1) Mizahar Grader (1)
Trailblazer (1) Overlored (1)
Sunberth Seasonal Challenge (1)

[The Midnight Gem] Chains That Don't Bind

Postby Kelski on August 27th, 2018, 5:35 am

GRADING

Kelski

Experience: Jewelcrafting +5, Metalsmithing +3, Planning +5, Body Building +2, Endurance +1, Mathmatics +3

Lores: JC: How To Flatten Chain, JC: How To Square Links, Stilletto: 8 inch wrist, JC: Annealing Metal To Make Bracelets Flexible, JC: Using an Alcohol Torch for Soldering, JC: Building A Box Clasp

Notes: Job thread completed… Endurance and BB given heavy rasping of metal and pulling heavy chain using entire body weight.
Image
They laugh at me because I am different.
I laugh at them because they are all the same.
User avatar
Kelski
Feral at heart.
 
Posts: 857
Words: 1100424
Joined roleplay: July 3rd, 2014, 11:08 pm
Location: Sunberth
Race: Kelvic
Character sheet
Storyteller secrets
Plotnotes
Medals: 5
Featured Thread (1) Mizahar Grader (1)
Trailblazer (1) Overlored (1)
Sunberth Seasonal Challenge (1)


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 0 guests