Wire gauges?

Forum: Jewelry Making Materials

Hi – I’m fairly new to wire working. I enjoy working with thicker gauges.

I’m finding that the copper wire I’ve been buying [from Amazon] is often times a smaller gauge than what I’ve ordered. For instance: I ordered 16 gauge copper wire and it measures as 17 gauge in my round gauge measuring tool. The 12 gauge measured at 13g. And yesterday I received what was supposed to be 10 gauge copper wire and it measures as 12 gauge. It’s not a big deal to me if it’s off by only one but I was surprised to get 10g copper wire that measures as 12g.

I have no idea how wire is made. Maybe this is just how it goes?

Tags: copper wire


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Shanks ...

Diane, as a previous worker in the steel/metals industry I can tell you that all metals when milled/formed are given what’s called a tolerance standard. Meaning most metals will be allowed a +/- percentage of allowable tolerance. So in layman’s terms a piece of material that should measure out at say 1/16" of an inch, can be depending on the standard followed, over or under sometimes up to 10-15%. Depending on the supplier, some follow closer tolerances than others. When I was in the industry, I sold primarily steel, and the owner wouldn’t touch Chinese steel due to the lax standards regarding tolerances and quality. You may want to try shopping with Rio Grande Jewelry supply. At least you are dealing with a domestic company that you can call up and talk to if the material you receive is a lesser quality than what you find acceptable.