Jewelry Tutorials

Make A Bezel Rocker Out Of Trash

Create a crucial stone setting tool from a golf ball and framing nail


April 15, 2010

So, why would a guy who hates sports pick up a golf ball on the side of the road? Turns out this is not a joke.

Found a Golf Ball As we often see, professional sports are drenched in many problems including: endorsement deals, drugs, and corporate money. Golf, it seems, is particularly troubling. A big part of the problem includes the enormous waste of water to keep the green, green. Especially when water is a commodity we cant live without. We know many so-called "third world countries" are being forced to try, as some chosen few get to enjoy it, not as the precious resource it actually is.

But I digress...

I am a trash picker

Found a Nail My political and socioeconomic views aside, I am a trash picker. I found a golf ball on the side of the road and some 6 inch steel framing nails in an old airplane hanger over in Burbank, that was being sold off for storage space – and the stuff had to go. I was in the right place at the right time to get what would be considered trash. Hence the nails.

Four inches

So, here is what I did. (Queue the ominous, yet intriguing soundtrack.)

Cutting the Nail First, determine how long you want your bezel rocker to be. Four inches seems to be an average length for the conventional bezel pusher. But, see what feels right for your hand. I cut the nail knowing it would be inset by approximately one inch. Then, I got my 7/64ths drill bit to make a hole. With tape I marked the drill bit, of course I did, to know what an inch was. I picked my spot on the ball and drilled.

Made Angle Cuts to the Nail As you can see I made some backwards angle cuts into the nail. I did that due to the thought that this would help prevent the nail from wanting to slide back out of the ball. This may help, but I think this construction is pretty solid either way.

A hole in one

Drilled Hole in Golf Ball At this point I hammered the nail into the hole on the ball. After, be sure it's secure. Then, you will begin shaping your tool. Think about what you like and what you don't like about your existing tool. Now is the time for change. Think about the problems of the tool itself you always can improve things. You can make your new tool any shape you like. The sky is the limit.

Hammered Nail into Golf Ball Then, I used a small bench top belt sander to shape the nail. You can also use an angle grinder or a grinding wheel. Once you get the shape you like you'll need to put a decent polish on the steel. Because you wouldn't want your new tool to transfer anything on to the bezel that you may be setting with this bezel rocker later on. Use a hard buff on your polisher with either tripoli or steel compound to get a polish on your tool.

Finishing touches

Beveled Edge of Bezel Roller Fellow silversmith Mat Citrenbaum and I have ongoing conversations on this topic. Mat made me a bezel rocker with a masonry nail. I like one side of my bezel roller to be beveled just slightly for my first couple go-arounds on the stone. And for the other side I like a more sharp, 90 degree angle so I can ride the very edge of the metal, pressing, pushing, and rolling in a downward motion to finish the setting experience off.

Final thoughts

At this point its up to you, to do what it is you do to finish ....

Finished Bezel Roller Lastly, this was a great use of trash. Recycling can mean more than just putting a soda can into the blue bin. My love of the planet (as you can clearly see above) is highlighted here by recycling - trash pickin' is truly green. Think outside the box, make new from old, and enjoy the process.


  • Golf Ball
  • 6 Inch Steel Framing Nail
  • Tripoli or Steel Compound


  • A Jeweler Saw
  • Belt Sander or Angle Grinder
  • File
  • Hammer
  • Polisher
  • Measuring Tape