Learn how to make jump rings to use in beading or making jewelry. Get step-by-step instructions make your own jump rings by hand!
Making jump rings is an easy beginner wire jewelry project.
I made these jump rings with 20 gauge copper wire and a 6.5mm diameter knitting needle as a mandrel.
Jump rings can be used in jewelry making in a number of ways: to connect clasps to beading wire, to make jump ring jewelry or to connect ear wires to bead dangles.
To make jump rings use 18 - 24 wire gauge sizes. These wire gauges are easier to coil the wire around your mandrel.
Use a higher gauge wire with smaller diameter mandrels. For example, for 24 gauge wire use a 4mm diameter (or smaller) mandrel instead of a 6mm (or larger) diameter mandrel. Why?
Because higher gauge wire is thin. The larger you make a jump ring using thin wire, the less strength it will have.
The opposite is true as well. The thicker (smaller gauge number) the wire used to make a jump ring the stronger the jump ring.
Review this wire gauge chart learn more about wire gauges.
Skill Level: Beginner Wire Jewelry Making
If you are new to jewelry making and have not used jump rings, take a look at...
Use copper or brass wire (purchase from your local hardware store or local bead shop) to practice making jump rings. Then, graduate to using sterling silver or gold-fill wire.
Here is an explanation and pictures of jewelry pliers used in bead and wire jewelry projects.
1. Gather your supplies and tools.
Work directly (wire is not cut from spool before using) from a coil of wire, or using wire cutters, cut several inches or centimeters of wire. (I am working directly from a spool, or coil, of copper wire.)
Place and press the wire perpendicular to the mandrel (I used a 6.5mm knitting needle).
2. Using your fingers, bring the long end of wire down and towards the mandrel.
3. Begin to coil or wrap the wire around and snugly against the mandrel. Do this several times to make several wraps around the mandrel.
4. If necessary, use chain nose pliers to squish the wires snugly together.
5. Using the wire cutters with the flush or straight side against the mandrel, cut the long tail wire close to the mandrel.
6. Using your fingers, press both wire ends around and against the mandrel. OR...
Or use the chain nose pliers to press both wire ends around and against the mandrel.
The wire coils or wraps should be pressed snugly together and against the mandrel.
7. Remove the coil from the mandrel. Align your wire cutters with the flush or straight side against a wire end. Carefully, cut through each wrap.
8. The results: Perfectly made jump rings by hand!
9. To finish, or make smooth, the ends of each jump ring, use a nail
emery board or jewelry flat file.
Simply open ( How to Open Jump Rings) each jumpring and file each end smooth.
You're done. You know how to make jump rings! How cool is that?
Here are a few items that you can use as a mandrel to make your jump rings.
Form top to bottom: case used to hold lead for lead pencils, marker pen, ink pen, knitting needle.
These are just a few items. Look around your home or check out your local office supply or bead shop for more choices.
Once you know the basics of how to make jump rings, make them in different shapes and sizes.
Jump rings do not have to be round. Keep an eye out for items with an unusual shape that can be used as a mandrel.
Using jump rings made of different and unexpected shapes will add interest to your bead and wire jewelry designs!