From the bench: solitaire princess cut engagement ring

Making a classic PIKE style 4 claw solitaire ring with princess cut diamond.

Starting with a square section of 18 ct white gold, a piece is cut off to the desired length to manufacture the claw setting. The major advantages to making the setting from a solid block of gold, is there are no obvious weaknesses, and you can achieve almost any shape you want:

From there the block is divided into quarters with a sawblade and forced apart equally to achieve the ‘v’ shape:

Once the desired measurements are reached, I solder on a utility pin to hold the setting easily and file the outside and inside shape and angles. I consider this the most important stage as it determines the overall look of the ring:

Next step is the shank or band. With this particular job the customer’s request was for a substantial amount of metal, so with this in mind the thickness and width of metal were a little more than usual for the style of ring but totally suited the size of the diamond and the finished ring could be worn every day and thoroughly enjoyed.

Once the gold strip was rounded up and soldered it was time to profile the shank and fit the setting:

This can always be a tricky stage with such a simple style of ring, because it is easy to take out too much metal or file the incorrect angle. It is about being precise and measured with your technique and trust in your ability.

Soldering the setting and the shank together is the final step in manufacture before setting the diamond. This step relies on a well-fitted join between the setting and the shank. Soldered with 18ct white gold hard solder:

Some minor final adjustments are made before the customer can view and try the unset ring on for finger fit:

After confirming the finger size, the diamond is set.

The ring is then polished and rhodium plated:

The finished ring:

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