When beginning at metal working, it is good to play with a simple project. In this case the metal is copper, and the project is a money clip. The entire project needs to be planned before you begin any work. Drawings of what you want to achieve and what effect you want need to be done. In this case you can see that the finished money clip has patterning done, there is a bent up lip where the money is inserted and there is a round opening to make a spring effect to hold the money in place.
Select your metal, and decide on the method for cutting the basic shape from the original sheet. Here you can see the rectangular shape for the clip has been drawn on the copper sheet. Then you have two ways to cut the shape our of the sheet. A jewelers saw can be used with the appropriate size blade inserted. I like to use 4-0 or 5-0 blades and take my time. Piercing with the saw makes a cleaner cut for me than using shears. Shears are the other choice. In this case since only two straight line cuts are needed, with will work.
After piercing the rectangle from the sheet of copper (20 gauge); the corners were filed into a rounded shape and the pattern was put on the surface using the peen end of a chasing hammer. Then the shape was bent around a nail to make the spring about 0.25 inches off center so the top is shorter than the bottom of the clip. Then using flat nose pliers, the end of the top of the clip was bent up slightly. Producing:
Now all you have to do is add the money. For a white metal to practice this type of cold forming, aluminum can be used. For this project, no fire was needed, nor were more advanced types of forming. More difficult projects will be presented in future blogs. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me.