Monday, August 8, 2016

Beginners Guide to Sawing with Knew Concepts Jewelers Saw

Knew Concepts is a fairly new name in the jewelry industry. They introduced a new concept, as the brand name clearly stated, to sawing. To install the blade, instead of pushing the frame into the sternum like the standard German saw frame, Lee Marshall who refers himself as "The Saw Guy" invented a tensioning system that basically lets the frame does the tensioning for you. Brilliant, no? 

I've heard split opinions on Knew Concepts Jeweler's Saw, some people love it and others hate it. I'm in the first group. I LOVE IT! So what makes Knew Concepts Saw special? Let me tell you.

Kharisma from, not State Farm.

  •  Knew Concepts Jeweler's Saw with Cam Lever Tensioning System is lightweight, rigid frame, and you get the perfect tension with a flip of a switch. It's great for piercing jobs as you don't have to break your sternum to finish a jewelry. The lightweight frame allows you to saw longer without getting hand fatigue.
Flip that lever!


  • The correct way to install the blade is the teeth should be pointing down and facing out. The smaller the blade gets the harder it is to see the teeth. The next best thing besides wearing a magnifier is to feel the blade with your finger.
Stroke it up gently to feel the teeth of the blade.

The blade size in this diagram is an exaggeration to show it better

  • Insert the blade, make sure the Tension Knob is unscrewed to the max, then tighten the Top Knob.
Unscrew it!

  • Flip the cam lever to the opposite side to instantly tensioning the blade. Screw the Tension Knob clockwise to add the tension until you find the perfect tension. You only need to do this ONCE. The future blade changing is as easy as flipping the switch. That's it!
Flip it once, flip it good!


  • Lube your blade for better sawing experience. I use a candle wax. Beeswax can also be used.

  • With lubricant the blade cuts smoother, resists breaking, and lasts up to twice as long.

  • This is how you saw a tight angle: cut from two different directions. It will produce a nice sharp point and you'll avoid breaking a blade.

  • For corners bigger than 90°, you can easily cut through it in one pass. Just keep your blade moving while turning the piece around.

  • Finger safety measure: always place fingers that are holding the sheet down on the solid area of the bench and no one will get cut. 


  • There are many ways to avoid premature blade breakage. One of them is to soften your grip by having the pinky out. However, I found that it's more comfortable for me to have my index finger out. Holding the saw handle with only 3 fingers and a thumb will relax your grip a whole lot. You just have to find which method works best for you.

Watch this video below to get 

Subscribe to Popnicute on YouTube.

  • One method I use to saw neater is by using the thinnest line possible. My favorite is to draw in Adobe Illustrator, a vector based program, using 0.25 pt line. Inkscape is the free alternative to Adobe Illustrator. Here, I'll show you a little snippet on the difference between using a Sharpie and 0.25 pt line. 

  • 0.25 pt line is just about the size of a saw blade so your eyes can focus much better. If you saw a thick line your eyes would wander off left and right confusing your hand so you get squiggly line as a result.

To make learning easier for you I have made my Digital Sawing Templates available at my tutorial shop:

All graphics were drawn in Adobe Illustrator using 0.25 pt line.

Watch the video above for the full coverage. 
Subscribe to my youtube channel for more tutorials. 


Tuesday, August 2, 2016

Beginners Guide to Make Copper Pipe Cuff Bracelet with Popnicute

Making the Moon Crater copper pipe bracelet is a lot of fun. All you need, material wise, is a piece of copper pipe, M thickness (the thinnest copper pipe). Easily obtainable from any hardware stores. But to form it, there are a lot of tools involved. I will show you here some basic tools to help you get started. I'm not affiliated to any of these websites or brands. I shared them here simply because I believe they have good products and services.

For a complete instruction on 
watch the video below.

Check my Craftsy store, Popnicute.Supply, for PDF Tutorials and Digital Sawing Templates!

PS: you can replace any of these tools with comparable products. Shop around for the best prices.


Propane torch is needed to anneal copper. A butane torch is too small and will not give you enough heat to anneal copper pipe. Your choice of refillable or disposable propane tank. Plenty of them available at the hardware store. Acetylene torch can be used as an alternative. 



Fire brick is available at the hardware store. A charcoal block can be found at a jewelry supply company like Otto Frei or Rio Grande even at Amazon. Fire brick will be the surface to fire your copper pipe. Do not anneal copper on top of concrete. Concrete can shatter from heat and is potentially dangerous.


You can use any baking pan to contain your charcoal block to protect your surface from direct heat. I bought a used stainless steel cooking pan in a thrift shop as my annealing pan and filled it with pumice. I place my pumice pan on top of a granite lazy suzan so I can turn the pan around easily if needed.



You can get one from a thrift store. Plastic or ceramic lid is better to use. Pickle is acidic and can rust steel which would contaminate pickle and copper plate the pieces you dipped into it.
To make a pickle, use PH Down (pool chemical, can be purchased at hardware store/pool supply store) mixed with water to remove firescale from your copper pipe. Do not boil. Warm setting is enough. Warm pickle cleans faster but it can be used cold too.
PS: if you intend to use cold pickle, any glass container big enough for your piece would do.


Use a big enough ceramic or glass bowl and fill it with water. It will be used to dip a heated copper to cool it down. It's best to not use plastic as plastic can melt in touch with high heat. If you use pickle, you'll need another quenching bowl filled with water and baking soda solution to neutralize the pickle.



Pickle is used to remove the black oxide that's forming on top layer of the metal after firing. I use pH DOWN (any brand) which is a chemical used in swimming pool to lower the pH of the water. Mine came in granule form and I basically pour water inside the quenching bowl and add enough granules, don't be shy. I only pickle after I'm done with forming the pipe bracelet as forming this bracelet requires multiple firing so pickling is unnecessary. For the rest of the process I just quench the pipe inside plain water. Leave the metal in pickle for about a few minutes or until the black oxide has softened. I used my copper tong to scratch the piece lightly, if the black oxide is lifted then it's done pickling. You don't really need to leave it in pickle until the blackness is completely gone.

Pickle is acidic and will paint rust on steel tools so don't ever put it inside a metallic container nor dip any steel tool inside a pickle solution. 



Dilute baking soda in water to neutralize the acidic piece after pickling. Again, don't be shy. When dipping your pickled piece in baking soda solution, the piece will fizzle like an effervescent. Wait until the bubbles are gone to lift it off. When it no longer bubbles it indicates that your piece has been neutralized.


Use long copper tongs to handle hot copper pipe and to put in and pick up your copper pipe inside a pickle solution. Do not use steel. Steel reacts with pickle and will contaminate your pickle.


An anvil or a bench block is where you hammer and form your copper pipe on.


I use a chasing hammer to create the initial dents on the copper pipe.



These dapping punch set can be used to create deeper and tighter craters. Use a delrin or brass mallet or a chasing hammer to drive the punches.



A stepped mandrel is used to form the hammered pipe into a bracelet. I prefer a stepped mandrel as it can hold down the bracelet as I form it a little further (see video).


So there you have it. A list of basic tools you needed to make a Moon Crater bracelet out of copper pipe. Have fun creating!!