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Topic: Re-shaping rings?
Message: Posted by: Kent Messmer (Jul 14, 2004 10:39AM)
I have a set of Merv Taylor linking rings I use all the time. They are a great set but over the years of using them, some, have become out of round. Has anyone found a way to "re-round" them?

Message: Posted by: Leland Stone (Jul 14, 2004 11:42AM)
Hiya, Kent:

Are the rings plated (chrome, nickel, etc.)? If so, attempts at re-rounding may result in the plating flaking off.

Assuming the plating is not an issue, roundness can be restored with a mandrel and a mallet. The mandrel is a piece of semi-circular hardwood (maple, ideally) with an outside diameter equal to the inside diamter of your rings; bolt this mandrel to a sturdy workbench. The mallet should be either wooden, resin, or a dead-blow type. Using the mallet, tap the ring against the mandrel, working out the flat or ovoid spots into their original roundness. (Make sure the ring is held perpendicular to the mandrel, or the ring may warp out-of-plane.) Do not use metallic hammers - steel, brass, or the like - which may dent or stretch the rings or leave coloured marks thereon.

Of course, I'd recommend warming up on a practice piece before tackling the actual rings.

Leland Edward Stone
Message: Posted by: Kent Messmer (Jul 15, 2004 01:57PM)
Thanks Leland.

This mandrel, is it something to have a woodworker make or is this something I can purchase pre-made?
Message: Posted by: Leland Stone (Jul 15, 2004 03:43PM)
Hiya, Kent:

Any woodworker should be able to fashion this one for you out of 8/4 or thicker maple stock. You'll need a piece about 18" long; drill one end with four or five 3/8" holes for mounting to your workbench.

If you'd like to try this without the expense of having it custom-made, just go to your lumber yard buy an off-cut, then lag screw it to your bench. Round off the edges with a plane or a 3/8" router bit, and try tapping those rings back into shape.

I'll bet you'll get the hang of it pretty quickly, especially if you try a couple of practice rings (say, coat hangers, for example) first. Let me know if you need a diagram, and I'll put a sketch on my Web site. Caution: Metalworking can be addictive!

Message: Posted by: Kent Messmer (Jul 16, 2004 10:22AM)
Thanks, I will most likely give it a try first as I'm very cheap. Hey but that is the reason I know how to do so many things anyway. hehe.