22 thoughts on “A Nice Ring To It

      1. Spartacus

        Not really, Clamps. I have the gear to make these – I was asked by a friend (someone into the crafts fair circuit) to price up making some earlier this year. Apparently they were a very popular item 100 years ago, given to sweethearts by young fellas off to the trenches of The Great War. The armourers had the necessary tooling and skills and rolled the pennies in return for a pint or three.

        I estimate there’s a good day’s work in each one, allowing for a nice polished finish to make an attractive ring. Silver would take less time as it wouldn’t need to be repeatedly annealed like copper, but the base cost of an old silver coin is much higher.

        1. Clampers Outside!

          Thanks for the clarification on the work involved Spartacus :)
          In all honesty, if someone finds a way to make a livin’ from craft work they get a tip o’ the hat from me.

          1. Spartacus

            If my own observations are any measure, craft workers in this country work extremely hard for a very poor return. You’d have to possess a creative flair and a passion for it, and be willing to accept very little in the way of financial reward.

  1. Vegeta

    My grandfather use to make these from old silver dollars people brought home from America. Nothing as detailed as these but my mother still has one he made her and they have tremendous sentimental value. I enjoy seeing people take everyday items like a coin and turn it into something interesting/beautiful.

  2. Adam

    I started making coin rings earlier in the year, and I’m based in Northern Ireland. It’s pretty fun, and the amount of time it takes really depends on the metal. Silver is easier to work with, but purer silver is easier to knock out of shape. The 50% silver English shillings seem to be one of the best coins to work with. I like the Irish 20p as well, because brass polishes up really well.

    1. Spartacus

      That’s really nice work, Adam. Do you mind if I ask you what techniques you use, and how long you spend on each ring? The person I made samples for makes her own jewellery (I know nothing about jewellery but even I can tell it’s very high quality work), so I probably spent more time on the rings than they warrant.

      I have an antique clockmaker’s lathe with all of the tooling including a set of rollers small enough for forming pieces this size. Between the slow rolling, the annealing, and the thinking time I probably averaged 6 or more hours per ring, which is clearly not financially viable.

      I’ll pass on your shop details – you may have a new “trade” customer soon.

      1. Adam

        Thanks Spartacus. It can take from an hour to about three, depending how difficult the material is to work with and how awkward that particular coin is being. I drill a hole out of the centre of the coin, then anneal it, and place onto a steel ring mandrel. It is then beaten down with a nylon hammer until it becomes more ring like, flipped over, and the process continues. Then I use a bench grinder to round off the edges if it suits. I think it makes it more ring like with that technique, but it can add a bit of extra time. Really finishing and polishing can be time consuming enough.


        1. Spartacus

          Thanks Adam

          I passed on details of your etsy shop. My friend is away on holiday with her husband until the end of next week, but I know that all of her group are gearing up for the Christmas markets and fairs atm. Hopefully you’ll be able to do some business there. Good luck!

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