It’s time for our next installment of Tech Tidbits! In case you haven’t heard, the members of Rio’s Tech Support team have been sharing tips, tricks and shortcuts they’ve learned from years of working at the bench. Here are a few of the latest!

Rust Prevention

We were thinking about how to fight off rust. One trick that the Tech Team likes is to save all those little desiccant packets, you know, the ones that come with nearly everything…electronics, shoes, etc. We save them and put them in our bench drawers with our files and other small steel tools. Another trick is to place a stick of chalk in the drawer. Both the desiccant packets and chalk help absorb ambient moisture and keep the rust at bay. For more info on rust prevention check out my post, Rust Prevention with a Hint of Shop Safety here on The Studio.

Don’t just toss it in the trash –keep it for rust prevention!

Gluing Pearls

Here at Rio we like to use 5-minute epoxy to glue pearls on a post because it cures fast, clear, and hard. This epoxy needs to be mixed very well in a 1 to 1 ratio. It’s easiest to mix on a piece of white scrap paper with a toothpick. Mix it for a minute or two but no longer than that as it can set up rather fast. After mixing leave the toothpick in the mix. Apply some of the epoxy to the hole in the pearl using a broken saw blade, or another thin piece of metal, and place the pearl on the post. Give it a twist to smear the glue on the inside of the hole and then set it aside to cure. To test the cure, test the toothpick that you kept in the leftover mix. If the leftovers are cured, then the pearl is good. If you have some epoxy oozing after placing the pearl, leave it be. It’s easier to trim away with a craft knife and wipe it clean, once it has cured.


Why Do We Call Them Aughts?

I love how non-technical jewelry making can be sometimes. Here is a good example.
For years I’ve ordered saw blades using the term “aught”. The zero on the blade sizes (for example, 1/0) is referred to as “aught.” So a 1/0 is called a one-aught blade. The measurement scale is inverted like negative numbers: large numbers of aughts correspond to smaller sizes of blades. But I never really knew for sure what an aught was. Turns out, an aught is a naught. The word aught, meaning zero, is a fairly recent corruption of the old English word naught, meaning nothing; apparently the phrase “a naught,” meaning a zero, came to be misspelled as an aught.

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