Bent wood Bracelets, Tricks and jigs.

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Project by Bearpaw posted 11-30-2013 08:34 PM 12491 views 21 times favorited 15 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I wanted an item to make in the basement that would not require power tools, easy, cheap and with the potential to make some money.

I started by making a couple of bent wood rings and found them very easy to do. They will sell better with an inlay. So I am working on that part. I still have a couple of jigs to make and some techniques to master.

The bent wood bracelets are more easy to make. You do have to make some jigs and have a source for veneer. I am fortunate in a friend owns an architectural panel company that applies veneer to MDF for mill work installations. He has a lot of cut offs of high end veneer. Also, in Atlanta there is Carlton McLendon, Inc. that specialize in rare wood and veneers. They will sell cut offs.

Now to the jigs. The first is to make your pattern or bending anvil to shape your bracelet. I found a bracelet at Walmart and traced it to paper. Made some copies for a pattern to cut the anvil. Make sure the anvil is as thick as your bracelet is wide. The next thing is a pattern for cutting the veneer by. That is in the second picture. I tried to use a split tire tube to wrap around the anvil, but found it very clumsy, so I am off to the jig building part of my brain. I measured out a piece of aluminum flashing the width of the anvil and the length to go past the point on the bracelet where you will cut off the ends. You can hand bend the material around the anvil then place the clamp over it and tighten it up. Make sure to press down on the material and strap to be sure they are aligned. Also, wrap the anvil with some cellophane tape to keep the glue from sticking. For glue use Titebound 3 glue or any other brand of water proof glue you prefer.

It takes at lease 6 layers of veneer to form a bracelet 1/8th inch thick. Make sure you completely cover the surface with glue. Since the anvil is covered with cellophane and the clamp is aluminum, the bracelet should sit in the jig for 8 hours.

I cut off the opening with my band saw. If I do a good job of getting the edges lined up I can normally get a square cut. I round off the edges with a sanding disk in the drill press. To get the shape I want I will take a marker pen to mark around a quarter. I sand the edge on my belt sander. If you like you can put a taper to the bracelet shape. After sanding and satisfied that I am finished, I will spray some shaker can lacquer, sand and then spray again. You may want to wax and buff for a high end finish.

Bracelet #1 is stripe maple over sapele. Bracelet #2 is ash over sapele. Bracelet #3 is sapele. Bracelet #4 is walnut over ash. This is where you let the wood talk to you for getting an eye catching bracelet.

These make great Christmas, birthday gifts or for your ETSY or craft show sales. Good luck and have fun.

The last thing is this the time the world celebrates the birthday of Jesus Christ, The Son of God. May God’s riches blessing be yours for the rest of your life.


Prov. 4:23

-- "When we build, let us think we build forever." John Ruskin

15 comments so far

View albachippie's profile


773 posts in 4249 days

#1 posted 11-30-2013 09:32 PM

Nice work, I really like these. Thanks for sharing with us,


-- Garry fae Bonnie Scotland

View choppertoo's profile


304 posts in 4527 days

#2 posted 11-30-2013 09:48 PM

Great post! I have been experimenting with rings and bracelets are next on my list. Thank you for sharing this informative post.

Very nice looking bracelets.

-- The greatest danger for most of us is not that our aim is too high and we miss it, but that our aim is too low and we reach it.. Michelangelo

View glen's profile


175 posts in 3767 days

#3 posted 12-01-2013 12:02 AM

great bracelets… i’ve made turned ones before, but never bent. will have to give it a shot sometime. Add another thing to the list…

View Richard's profile


11310 posts in 4247 days

#4 posted 12-01-2013 12:56 AM

Very Nice Work Indeed! Thanks For Sharing!

Thanks also for the Great Details You Posted with it.


-- Richard (Ontario, CANADA)

View BubingaBill's profile


297 posts in 2898 days

#5 posted 12-01-2013 03:31 AM

Very nice!!!

-- Measure twice and try not to cut your thumbs off!

View Heavy's profile


118 posts in 3802 days

#6 posted 12-01-2013 07:52 PM

I love when someone shares their tricks of the trade. I made mine bracelets a little differently but I must say your technique looks better. Good job!

View BENTWOOD's profile


401 posts in 2996 days

#7 posted 12-01-2013 09:14 PM

Very nice BearPaw! I am hoping after Christmas to craft some bentwood bracelets as well. I noticed a couple of the bracelets have the short grain wrapping around ad was curious how much it lessened the durability.
Have a Merry Christmas!


View Snookie's profile


173 posts in 3706 days

#8 posted 12-01-2013 09:46 PM

I love your bracelets & rings, and thank you for sharing how you make them! I also enjoyed meeting you at the St. Pius X Marketplace. I’ll be in the Apple Annie Arts & Crafts December 6th & 7th at St. Ann’s in Marietta, GA.

-- Snookie, Jasper,GA

View Bearpaw's profile


270 posts in 4934 days

#9 posted 12-01-2013 09:55 PM

Snookie. It was a pleasure to meet you and your mother. Good luck with the show.

-- "When we build, let us think we build forever." John Ruskin

View a1Jim's profile


118200 posts in 4791 days

#10 posted 12-01-2013 11:46 PM

Thanks for sharing your tricksand jigs nice work.


View Fishinbo's profile


11362 posts in 3390 days

#11 posted 12-05-2013 04:45 PM

Very pretty bracelets and effective techniques. I’m sure they’ll be hits for ladies. Great job!

View woodbutcherbynight's profile


10265 posts in 3623 days

#12 posted 12-21-2013 04:33 AM

Nice work, I am guessing the finger jigs did not work out as planned?

-- Live to tell the stories, they sound better that way.

View Bearpaw's profile


270 posts in 4934 days

#13 posted 12-21-2013 05:29 AM

Woodbutcherbynight – Actually it did. These are easier to make and I have sold 7 so far in about a week with 2 -3 more possible sales. Having to send one to Canada. I have been looking for things to inlay. I inlay-ed some glass in one the other day. Stopped by HD where they cut the keys. Asked the guy for the brass cuttings from making the keys and he gave them to me. So I will try to inlay the brass in to one made from walnut.

I had a person ask me about matching earrings.

I need to make one more tool for making the rings. Looking for an old sewing machine motor and foot petal to make a small lathe.

-- "When we build, let us think we build forever." John Ruskin

View woodbutcherbynight's profile


10265 posts in 3623 days

#14 posted 12-22-2013 07:05 PM

Hey we used a Dewalt drill squeezed between two boards tied together with 550 cord to make a lathe in Iraq. Crude but hey ya know you work with what you have (Laughing)

-- Live to tell the stories, they sound better that way.

View Cyguy's profile


1 post in 1551 days

#15 posted 06-23-2017 05:04 PM

Hello everyone, I have a turned wooden bracelet of oak, maple, black walnut and American walnut. I cannot figure
out the technique utilized to create this “work of art”. It defies logic and plagues my mind and I have done turning for many years. I’m not able to post the pictures but would gladly email photos to anyone wishing to view a one of
a kind bangle. Thank you, Richard Simons [email protected].com

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