The Wooden Wedding Rings

This week I spent time researching and building how to make better wooden rings. I made a set of wooden ones for the engagement rings, but Lee destroyed her’s within two days and this time I wanted to be at least a little more Lee resistant. Maybe not Lee proof, but enough to hold it together longer than two days.

Fancy because its exotic Zebra wood.

I found plans on how to make rings from wood veneer and CA wood super glue on a lathe so having all three I tried the idea.

I cut a paper thin sheet of exotic zebra wood veneer about 1/2 inch wide by about 8 inches and boiled it in a pot of water for about an hour. Since it was a test, I made extras. Once wet and pliable, I wrapped it around a piece of wooden down and taped it closed with masking tape, then slide it off the dowel for the next stripe of wood.

While I waited for it to dry, I lathed a piece of scrap wood to the ring size 7 that I needed. Both Lee and I have the exact same sized hands, fingers and feet; it’s actually kinda of creepy. Using a precision caliper, I measured the diameter to .682 for about an inch at the end to be allowed to wrap the stripe on during the gluing process and slip off, but still be able to slip it on during the sanding step.

After a few hours, the stripes were somewhat dry, but still super pliable and ready for the CA glue. Having Klingspor woodshop moved last week basically down the road from me, it was easy to source the specialized wood glue without turning to wait to buy online. I started to roll the zebra wood around the precision lathed scrap wood and dabbed a bit of CA glue between the overlapping layers and firmly held it in place for a few seconds. The CA glue worked perfectly; it held together and was super quick to dry for me to continuously move along and glue all the way to the end. I did 4 stripes of it just to make sure I get two good rings at the end. The best part about CA glue is that it doesn’t leave a glue or white residue on the wood and some people actually use it as a top coat finisher. It looks clear and like an epoxy finish, but I finished with glossy lacquer.

With all four rings glued up initially, I slipped them back on the scrap wood, using a piece of tape to wedge it in and rigged it back on the lathe to spin it for sanding, it made it super fast, easy and still a perfect circle. I did various grits between 100 and 400 but I hand sanded the inside and edges. Afterwards, I cleaned them off with my air compressor and sprayed a few coats of gloss lacquer then put it in a Zebra wood ring box I made earlier.

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