Personalize Jewelry Using Steel Letter and Number Punches
by Tammy Honaman, Author, Jewelry-Making Expert and Educator,
Exclusively for Fire Mountain Gems and Beads®
The steel punch set is comprised of 26 capital letters, an ampersand sign and numerals 0-9 (6 and 9 are the same stamp and need to be flipped depending on which one you are planning to use). These letters make a clean impression on soft metal and can be used to create any word, saying or phrase only limited by the space available on the metal you are stamping.
Place a steel bench block onto a stable work surface, something that won't bounce when you use the hammer.
Place a piece of metal (a piece of sterling silver or other soft metal stock, sterling silver round charm, disc cut-out using the disc cutter, etc.) onto the steel bench block.
Optional: Using a fine-tip marker and a ruler, draw a line as a guide on the metal surface.
Choose the punch you are going to use then place it onto the metal.
Hold the punch straight up then hit the end with a heavy hammer.
Tip: If you feel you didn't hit the punch firmly enough to have made a good impression and you are sure the punch didn't move, you can hit the punch again with the hammer. It is not advisable to do this if you are not sure the punch didn't move, as hitting after any movement in position could cause the image to blur.
Repeat Step 3 for as many letters as you'd like.
Tip: To place the next symbol in line with the previous one, tilt the punch so the symbol reflects on the surface of the metal. Adjust so the reflection is where you want the next symbol to be. Bring the punch upright while maintaining the position on the metal. Strike the punch with the hammer as you did in Step 3.
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