Stick With It: Laying Out Designs for Laser Welding

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Stick With It

Using sticky foam to lay out designs for laser welding

By Susan Eisen

Designing stock pieces for my jewelry store has never been more fun than it is now that I have a laser welder in my shop. When I was learning to use the laser, which I purchased from Stuller Inc. in Lafayette, Louisiana, one of the trainers gave me a fun tip for assembling my designs that I love to share with other jewelers.

When laying out a design to be welded, I always reach for Funky Foam—craft foam sheets that have one super sticky side on which to adhere the components. I keep a box of component parts on hand that I use to dream up my creations. The box is filled with hand-hammered recycled 14k gold sheets, cast pieces that exemplify rock formations in my area, branches cast in-house from our native tumbleweeds, and various gems and pearls. When I’m feeling inspired, I sit at my bench—or sometimes at my kitchen table at night—and organize the pieces into abstract designs, then take a photo of them...