Wax On

Rio Grande has established North American distribution for DigitalWax Systems (DWS) 3-D printers. Marketed exclusively to the ­jewelry industry in Europe and the Far East since 2007, DWS offers a reliable casting alternative that’s compatible with all CAD software. Carlos Zamora of New York City’s Tech-Designs—who has just started using the DWS technology—reports that his clients “are very happy thus far with the surface quality of their castings.” According to Eddie Bell, Rio Grande’s director of technology, interest in the Italian-made printers is (not surprisingly) high: “Despite a soft economy, sales took off like a rocket,” he says, adding that DWS is now “scrambling to fill our orders.”
—Steven Adler

Counter-Sketch’s customer-friendly technology


In the digital age, custom work is the next
logical step for retail ­jewelers. The newest business model is based on
CAD/CAM technology, which boasts a smaller facility, lower overhead,
and even higher profit margins. Enter CounterSketch Studio from
Gem­­vision, a tool that allows consumers to participate in creating
their own custom designs. Lisa Krikawa of Krikawa Designs added
CounterSketch to her new studio in Tucson and has no doubt the
technology will revolutionize the way custom jewelry is sold and made.
“It’s incredibly fun to play with and watch as customers get excited
with the possibilities,” she says. “When the customer has arrived at a
selection, we can purchase castings, semi-mounts, or completely finished
jewelry promised to arrive in only eight days from Stuller.”
Partici­pating retailers can quickly search an extensive collection of
virtual photo-realistic inventory right alongside their clients. Now
that credit and metal prices are at all-time highs, retailers should
find CounterSketch a welcome relief. —SA