Setting with Air Tools with Harry Forster-Stringer

04 Oct 2024 - 05 Oct 2024 · 9.30am – 4.30pm
£462 (6 places), Bookings close 23 September 2024
The Goldsmiths' Centre, London EC1M 5AD
Programme type
Technical Skills Training
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There are many ways to grain set stones. This two-day short course will cover the most up to date methods of using air tools and microscopes to arrange diamonds and precious stones cleanly and seamlessly across a surface.

Under expert tuition from award-winning goldsmith Harry Forster-Stringer, join our short course which will cover micro-setting skills through demonstration and individual practice.

“The course was interesting and challenging. Harry was knowledgeable and sympathetic to each student’s needs, as well as a generous mine of useful information on tools, techniques, and tricks of the trade.”

– Course Participant

Our small class size offers you the chance to get group as well as individual guidance and 1:1 time with your tutor, allowing you to receive tailored advice to deepen your knowledge and understanding of this setting technique. 

How will this course help my practice?

Delivered in person at the Goldsmiths’ Centre, this course will help you with:

  • Minimised Risk: Air tools provide better control when working with delicate gemstones. They reduce the risk of damaging stones or surrounding metal during the setting process, making them particularly useful for setting softer stones or intricate designs.
  • Higher Efficiency: This method can lead to faster and more efficient stone setting. This increased efficiency can save you time, allowing you to take on more projects and potentially increase your earnings.
  • Versatility: Air tools are versatile, can be used for a range of stone-setting techniques and streamline the process yielding more consistent results.
  • Complex Designs: For intricate jewellery designs or pieces with multiple stones to set, air tools can simplify the process. You can work with confidence to achieve complex designs that may have been more challenging with traditional tools.

You will learn how to:

  • set up your bench to work effectively.
  • set up a microscope, hand piece and control.
  • prepare tools (including tools sharpening and polishing for bright cut, especially Carbide gravers).
  • make specialised tools for setting.
  • mark up and prepare for drilling and setting.
  • use the tools whilst under supervision and with expert guidance.
  • create one piece that you can take home with you and enjoy.
  • best to source equipment needed.
  • grain set stones, using different techniques: pavé, flush and (time permitting) fishtails setting.
  • Protective clothing or clothing you do not mind getting dirty e.g. apron, and closed toe shoes.
  • Two pairs of accurate dividers.
  • One scriber.
  • One flat graver N40.
  • One spitzstick N4/0.
  • One spitzstick N5/0.
  • Own gravers/spitzsticks.


  • You can bring your own spitzstick, scorper and other setting tools.
  • Spectacles or head visor (if required) to work on small details.
  • Stones.
  • Drill bits.
  • Burrs.
  • Beading tools.
  • Practice plates.
  • GRS equipment.

Advanced: A practicing craftsperson looking to further their existing setting skill.

This course is suitable for someone who has good control of the pendant motor and a good grasp of cutting with scorpers.

We believe that talent should not be held back. Here at the Goldsmiths’ Centre, we are open, accessible and inclusive to all. Our Access Grants help anyone to build thriving creative careers, supporting jewellers, silversmiths and allied industry practitioners to access our training courses for free.

If you need help to cover fees for our business and technical skills short courses, please apply for one of our Access Grants. To find out more and read our application criteria, click here: Apply for an Access Grant

The Access Grants are delivered by the Goldsmiths' Centre and funded by the Goldsmiths’ Company Charity.

Who is the tutor?

Harry Forster-Stringer is an award-winning professional Goldsmith, Engraver and Enameller based in Nottingham with over 40 years’ trade experience. Starting as a mounter in Birmingham’s jewellery quarter, he made the jump to setting 30 years ago. He now covers a variety of techniques such as Stone-setting, Microsetting and Hand Engraving, as well as enamelling skills acquired under the tutelage of recently passed away respected Master Engraver and Enameller, Phil Barnes. He is a highly experienced tutor at the Goldsmiths’ Centre and successful consultant in the jewellery industry.