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kalinda
02-04-2008, 12:49 PM
Hi everybody,
I am new to beading and actually haven't quite started yet. I am in the process of getting ready and the more I read about somethings, the more confused I get. This is just what is happening regarding wire.
My idea of what I want to make is mainly earings, but I will give a go to necklaces as well, not so bothered at this stage about bracelets.
So... here is the magic question, what wire do I need to buy? I read about the 2 brands that are recommended (Beadalon and Softflex) and I wonder, can I get away with using cheaper stuff (out of ebay) or should I really invest on wire? What about thickness? Do I need to buy a bit of everything? What is considered the "regular" size?
I have acquired some tigertail wire (don't ask me what size), is this suitable for what I want to do? How is tigertail different from nylon-coated wire?
I also have fishing wire. Can I use this, or should I not bother with that at all?
As you see, questions, questions, questions... And the more reading I do, the more questions...
Sorry about all the questions, this is what you get for having newbies in your forum ;)
Kalinda

Debeadz
02-04-2008, 01:19 PM
Hi Kalinda

For earrings I generally use headpins to thread my beads on and for most of my necklaces I use Tigertail just because I find it can withstand quite a bit of weight. I also use the clear "fishing wire" type thread to make illusion necklaces but it can be quite fragile sometimes.

Mostly I have found out by trial and error as to how things turn out but you won't go far wrong using tigertail if you only want to buy one type of thread. That is just my opinion though :)

I'm sure someone else will come along with their advice too and answer your other questions!

I hope that helps and good luck with it! ;)

Bea
02-04-2008, 02:45 PM
What is considered the "regular" size?
I have acquired some tigertail wire (don't ask me what size), is this suitable for what I want to do? How is tigertail different from nylon-coated wire?
I also have fishing wire. Can I use this, or should I not bother with that at all?

Tigertail is a nylon coated wire. Regular size is 0.018" or 0.45mm, suitable for most projects. The non branded tigertail can be a bit hit and miss. I have tried a few before settling on a non branded one that is also good. Otherwise, Beadalon and indeed Softflex. I stock the less known Griffin Stringing wire which is just another brand for tigertail and comparable to Beadalon. Griffin is known for their silk thread above all.

Fishing wire in itself is not recommended for jewellery making. This is why Beadalon, Griffin and The Beadsmith have come up with ''illusion cord'' (=monofilament). The standard size is 0.010" which is quite thin. I also stock a thicker one 0.016", both from Griffin.

Saying all this, for earrings I'd also use headpins or eyepins. Simply put the beads on, make a loop and voila!

Hope this helps.

Beadservice
04-04-2008, 09:36 AM
Most beginners usually start with Tigertail, and some may stick with it.

Beadalon and SoftFlex are both brands making a similar thing, but you get a range of thickness, finishes and greater flexibility in the wire.

Most people will use either .018" or .015" thickness.

Tigertail is usually 3 stranded, coated Stainless Steel. Whereas in the brands you can get 7 strand, 14 strand, 19 strand and 49 strand. The more strands there are, the greater the strength and flexibility, which means less likely to kink. You can also get Silver Plated, gold, copper finishes in the brands, which can be more pleasing if the wire is going to be seen.

Debbie

silvermaid
04-04-2008, 12:22 PM
I like the Beadalon silver coloured wire - it is a very good match for sterling silver and cheaper than the silver plated one. I use the 19 strand .18mm
as it is a good all-round thread.

Melanie

Chris W
04-04-2008, 05:46 PM
I thin that beadalon is the best stringing wire especially the 49 strand, it drapes and knots well and is very strong. However it is very expensive. For very dainty necklaces you could use cheaper wire but it is also liable to kinking which can be a nuisance. The biggest problem with wire is breaking, sharp or rough beads wear through it in time. I would also recommend you use sterling silver crimp beads if you want your jewellery to be durable.