Skip to content

Cleaning Up Castings! – Bench Blog Episode #1

First off, welcome to the first of my weekly bench blogs!

I decided to create these weekly blogs not only as a way to make sure I am doing something productive every week but also to document what I have done and how I am progressing. Some of you may also find it interesting to see what I am up to on a weekly basis.

Creating an Online Course

Creating an Online Course

I know, the title of this blog is cleaning up castings but the most important thing I did this week was start recording my first online course!

So far, these are the most stressful videos I have ever recorded and this is coming from someone who has uploaded many hours of videos to YouTube but in an online course, everything has to be pretty much perfect and the information has to be on point, especially as I am asking people to pay for it.

But what is the course about? Well it is an Introduction to Diamonds course, that takes people through the 4 C’s, diamond simulants and treatments.

I had thought about creating a course for a while as many of the online courses I have taken have been nothing more than working through a PowerPoint presentation, so I decided to take my experience of teaching a diamond grading class and put it on camera.

I was also prompted to do this by a chance email from one of my suppliers, who had a customer who wanted to do some kind of course on Diamonds and wondered if I could help/recommend something. So I decided, it was time to stop thinking and start doing.

So I have now done the first two videos and have the others planned out. Hopefully the course will be online before Christmas 2020!

Cleaning Up Castings

Cluster Ring Casting Clean Up

So the second thing I have been doing this week is cleaning up a couple of castings, to get them ready for setting. These aren’t for a client or even to sell, they are two practise rings I bought towards the end of my stone setting course that I never got round to doing.

I also haven’t been doing too much at the bench lately, due to me focusing on my other business but I definitely miss it and want to start doing more.

To be honest, cleaning up castings isn’t something I overly enjoy doing as I always want to do a better job than I have but as I had no idea how to clean up a casting when I started my course, the fact I can do it and do it a to a good standard is something that I am proud of.

As for the stones that are going into these rings, the cluster ring on the left is going to be an 8x6mm Oval Colour Change Synthetic Sapphire, surrounded by brilliant cut 1.75mm Swarovski CZ’s and the one on the right is going to be a 4.5mm Brilliant Cut Swarovski CZ, surrounded by 3mm Swarovski CZ’s, I just need to order the CZ’s!

When finished, these rings should look really nice!

New Seiko 5 Watch Bracelet

Seiko 5 Oyster Bracelet

Watches are pretty much the only jewellery that I wear apart from a single stud earring and this Seiko 5 was the first ‘proper’ watch I ever bought. All of my previous ones had been cheap £10 or less, no name fashion watches but a couple of years ago I bought this Seiko 5 on Ebay and it became my work watch (when I had a proper job).

It came on a jubilee bracelet that was never comfortable and always dug into my wrist and this meant that it got relegated down my watch list (I don’t have an impressive collection by any means). But I decided to try and find another bracelet for the watch and the genuine, Seiko Oyster style bracelet appeared once again on Ebay, so I snatched it up.

When I received it, I was over the moon that they were solid links as most cheaper Seiko bracelets aren’t. I quickly changed it over, only to find out that even with all the links removed, it was still too big (I have very thin wrists) so I had to remove one of the permanent links. A scary experience but I learnt how to do something new, which is always awesome!


So a pretty busy week for me and was nice to get some time back at the bench. Not sure when the two rings are going to get done as I am mostly focusing on working on the course at the moment. Also need to spend some more time working on CAD as I have been slipping a little as of late!

I'm Paul Haywood FGA DGA, a fully qualified Gemmologist and Diamond Grader from the Gemmological Association of Great Britain and a lover of all things jewellery.

%d bloggers like this: