9.24.2010

Behind the Scenes: Finding a Metal Casting Company


Everything was going swimmingly...I had developed a delightful business relationship with a company that was willing to take my silver metal clay charm models and cast them into sterling silver. For almost a year now I had been diligently building up my collection of sterling charm designs. Each month I was moving up my mountain of a project step-by-step. The momentum was thrilling and exciting!

Then last month the wonderful people fabricating my charms at Sierra Pacific Casting, Inc. made the difficult decision to close their metal casting business and transition to doing solely CAD design, prototyping, and mold making. They are now called Sierra Design Studios. Whoops!

Normally, this radical detour might have caused some panic and send me scrambling for a solution. However, I experienced something quite different this time, and I'm confident that I owe my response to my 120 day Bikram yoga challenge.

For the first time, I was able to feel sad about the loss of this business relationship and what this change might mean for the people at Sierra Pacific Casting, Inc. while also believing that something else must be on its way towards me. Feeling sad yet embracing happiness at the same time. This was a big step for me.

More importantly, I stopped worrying about what was going to happen next. I'm confident that I will find another company to fabricate my charms and that this business relationship will be just what I need.

Has this kind of thing happened to you before? You like a certain store or product and then they go out of business or modify their offerings. You have to change, be flexible, and adapt to a situation without getting lost in the attachment to something that is no longer there.

In managing Hint Jewelry, I have had to switch directions a number of times when suppliers go out of business or change products. Usually, I get cranky when these modifications happen because I love when life is running smoothly. I'm the person who gets excited when my favorite brand of toothpaste is still on the shelf because all feels right with the world!

This time I've chosen to be comfortable with the unknown. I can see how it's all going to work out, and I'm already grateful for the generous people offering suggestions as to where to head next. The underlying point I'm trying to make is that you can use your business as a means for practicing the process of adaptation. I've started to recognize that Hint Jewelry is teaching me how to sail with grace through rocky seas by having faith in the process of living.

I am still researching which metal casting company to use for my jewelry, but I am grateful for this list of resources that has been provided by a number of thoughtful souls. None of these companies come with an endorsement from me, but if you are looking to get your work cast I hope this list will help you along the way.

Manufacturing Jewelers & Suppliers of America Buyers Guide
Mesilla Valley Casting, Las Cruces, New Mexico
Larry Paul Casting, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Carrera Casting, New York, New York
Mel Harris Casting, San Francisco, California
AU Enterprises, Berkley, Michigan
Art-Tech Casting, Scottsville, New York
Robert Snell Casting, Grass Valley, California
RaceCar Jewelry Company, Inc., Cranston, Rhode Island
Billanti Casting Company, Inc., New Hyde Park, New York
International Manufacturing Company, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

In 2012, I wrote another post updating readers on how I chose a metal casting company. In this new post, I include questions to ask and what the process of selection looked like for me. Click on this link to see the post "How to Choose a Metal Casting Company."


8 comments:

  1. Congratulations, Beth, on changing a pattern. God knows they're hard to change! And, thanks for the casting information. :-)

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  2. I understand completely, I used to have things cast. I have done a little with Robert Snell, they were amazing to work with, hope that helps. They are family owned. Good luck searching. Riki

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  3. i am so glad to hear of your reaction - i am slowly but surely learning that if i stay open and keep at it, there are things around the corner that we aren't even aware of yet... exciting about the business transitions...

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  4. Barbara, glad the information proved useful!

    Riki, your insight helps a lot! Thanks offering me some help.

    Mary Jane, gosh I think you and I are on the same opening journey. This has become such awareness practice for me. It's good to know you are experiencing similar things :)

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  5. Hi Beth,

    thank you for sharing this information. I was wondering if you are able to endorse any of these companies/if you have found a new casting resource?

    many thanks!
    peggy

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  6. I am interested in starting my own jewelry making. I have designs drawn but I have no idea howto make a wax seal charm mold or a silver model clay mold. Can you give me some ideas of companies who make the molds for you or do you make the models for others? Thank you Courtney

    My email is bcgrigsby07@yahoo.com

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  7. Hello, I know this is an older post, but I just had to comment :) I have used Art-Tech Casting and they are fantastic! It was my 1st experience casting my charms and they walked me through the process with kindness...didn't seem bothered at all that I was a novice. They were also affordable and super fast! I haven't had anything cast in a while, but when I need to again, without a doubt I will use Art-Tech :)

    Also, Beth, your designs are beautiful and I've admired them on Etsy for a while now :)
    Heather, Patina Queen

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    1. Thanks for the great input on your experience! Also, thank you for the wonderful feedback on my work!! It is most appreciated.

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