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Jewelry, Gems, & Minerals/Cubic Zirconia Setting


Ring being made
Ring being made  
Hi Thomas

I am having a ring made. It is a replica of a costume ring that is of high sentimental value. I want the stone set with glue. A yellow Cubic Zirconia. Can you advise me if I need to ask the maker to make the holder of the stone any special shape (I read your advice re no glue at the back just around edge). I might just be in time to ask for an alteration is you advise that. Kind regards Martina.

Dear Martina,

Thank you very much for including the illustrated rendering of the ring.  This is apparently a software enabled rendering and often the program includes instructions for a milling or wax printing machine.  Thius process is a good one and results are generally quite close to the design approved by the customer.

I recommended a bezel type setting for the gemstone and your sketch shows just such a setting. Another example is shown at this link:

There are two factors needed to make the glue method as secure as possible and also to allow for cleaning the gem and keeping cement off the pavilion (bottom side) of the CZ. First of all, the open hole below the gem should be as large as possible within reason to maintain a strong ring. The large hole helps expose the bottom of the gem, avoiding a pulling of cement along the sides from metal touching the stone below the girdle( waist) of the gem.  Also, this allows liquid cleaning solutions to go behind the stone to clean it as needed.  The seat for the gem is a groove-like ledge cut into the top of the bezel inside, just large enough for the stone to fit on the ledge neatly, fairly snugly and level with the ring. That little ledge is the only place the cement needs to be applied and sparingly at that, just enough to maintain contact with the gem all around the bezel. The gems must be wiped clean with alcohol or suitable solvent to any trace of finger prints, oils, etc., are removed. This cleaning allows the strongest cement joint with the stone.

I recommend two type of suitable cement:  Ultraviolet curing glass cement or a water clear two part epoxy cement such as Hughes 330.  Both may be found on  the net for purchase by the jeweler simply to see the sort of cement to which I refer.   Recommended as the first choice is the ultraviolet light curing cement. The sort used by watch repairmen and watch service businesses to secure glass crystals to watch cases is ideal. This cement forms a quite strong joining and is hardened (cured) by exposure to a uv lamp or bright sunlight. A sample drop is placed on a surface beside the ring while curing. When the drop is cured, so is the cement holding the gemstone. The water clear  and colorless version of the cement will not show and does not tend to run as the epoxy might.

Example of cement source:

Martina, keep these factors in mind and your yellow gem should stay secure for a long time and be fairly easily cleaned.  NO solvents should be used for cleaning which might loosen the cement! A water based detergent will do will overall.

There you are! The answer is complete. Should you need further information or have another question concerning this subject, do not hesitate to us a follow-up to contact me.  

God Bless and Peace.   Thomas.  

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Have a question about jewelry repair or working with precious metal jewelry and gemstones? For many years up to December 31, 2010, I was a working professional bench jeweler, involved everyday with setting stones in mountings, designing and making jewelry, repairing and limited custom manufacture. If you work with jewelry as a hobby or as a profession, I might be able to help. I deal with the retail business, not mass production. Ask privately if you wish. See the box for that: It keeps your question between us. Please DO NOT ask MAKER'S MARKS, but metal quality marks are fine to ask. Please DO NOT ask diamond prices. See a gemologist for that.


I have extensive experience in design, service and making of jewelry. I deal mostly with precious metals and gemstones but work with many materials as needed and usable to create an artistic design. My experience also includes freelance photography and photographer of jewelry and similar items for a former employer and individuals. Design of custom items requires reading the desires of the client and being clear on what can be done within that framework...then fulfilling the transition of idea to reality. Effective communications is essential in a working designer/producer and customer relationship.

Education is English/Physics! Started in human resources, to advertising, to, what a road. I have had formal training in jewelry work and many shared experiences with top grade jewelers. We just never know were we will go or be. Follow your best, your dreams, with some discretion! Don't let the work tear up your body along the way as it has mine.

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