Here’s the Official 2019 Bench Jeweler Workshop Wrap-Up
The 2019 Bench Jeweler Workshop was a major success! A bench jeweler’s paradise, our two-day workshop hosted over 150 participants for a weekend of learning, training, and networking. Jewelers were able to explore our tools and technology while meeting fellow craftsmen from around the globe. This year’s event was held over two days (instead of the traditional three-day format). Yet, the energy was electric thanks to our bustling Battle of the Benches competition.
Meet the Experts
The show floor was abuzz with industry experts sharing knowledge on a range of topics.
Digital Designing by Jessica Smith, Gemvision – Jessica flexed her digital design skills by explaining the various aspects of the CAD/CAM process.
Hand Engraving by Kelly Williams, KWGoldsmith – Master Engraver Kelly Williams returned to teach industry-leading hand engraving techniques.
Metal Forming with Jason Chandler, Portland Jewelry Academy – Jason returned to share his insight into making cost-effective wire, tubing, and more.
Stone Setting with Roman Simantov, Globus Stone Setting Tools – Master stone setters were on-hand to demonstrate advanced stone setting skills using the new Globus work holding solutions, answering any questions and sharing neat tips.
The 4th Annual Battle of the Benches Competition Begins!
Meet the Competitors
Competitors were judged from 1-10 on the following categories:
- Creativity/Artistic Expression
- Difficulty Level
Day 1: Parts & Pieces Challenge
The first day of our 2019 Bench Jeweler Workshop required challengers to build a piece of their choosing from an array of raw materials like sheet, sizing stock, and mill products. The competitors could create their designs using any tools on the demo floor. Equipment ranged from fully-stocked model benches, laser welders, engravers, plating units — everything they needed. These skilled artisans were glued to their benches on the demo floor as they worked to create something special.
Day 2: Ready, Set, Challenge
To enter the Battle of the Benches challenge, competitors submitted a qualifying CAD design to catch our attention. Then, Stuller cast their creations in time for the second day of competition where each competitor brought their designs to life in real time. With a crowd of onlookers and distractions at every turn, our four challengers forged these stunning masterpieces.
The Grand Champion: Evgenii Fedko
Meet Susan Rabinovitz
Susan was an on-site alternate for the Battle of the Benches competition. She had her own workbench and worked diligently throughout the event to create the stunning piece above.
A Few Favorite Sessions
Benefits of Laser Welding: Jeremy Thibodeaux, Stuller’s Tools and Supplies Technical Support Manager, explained in detail the multitude of benefits laser welders bring to your workspace. They’re invaluable tools. He even gave a hands-on demo with our line of Coherent-ROFIN® and Orotig laser welders.
Social Media Uncovered: Nichole Guillory and Chris Leonard, two of Stuller’s marketing experts, discussed social media strategy. They addressed the three questions we get asked most often: when, what, and how to post on social media. They explained how to use your social media insights to answer these burning questions. Plus, they went over the latest changes to the social space.
The Repair Business of the Future: Tammy Lail, Vice President of Tools and Equipment, Metals, and Packaging and Display, discussed how repair work is changing and how you need to protect yourself in the take-in process. She also covered the different pricing strategies that exist in valuing your labor.
Casting Demonstration: Dennis Busby, Casting Director, took visited through the process of casting white gold trees utilizing the RDO and TopCast casting machines.