TOUR AT THE BIGGEST JEWELRY TOOL SUPPLIER IN THE WORLD – RIO GRANDE


At Rio Grande, we really wanted to retain
the sense of family. so we created a culture, a very flat organization of a lot of collaboration. a lot of autonomy and a lot of decision-making based on a set of principles. so the people can make, good decisions based on what the desired outcome might being and we trust a lot of people to do a lot of things on their
own Hi good morning! Hi good morning, welcome to Rio Grande. I want to buy a Smith Torch. Perfect it´s an awesome torch. Pablo! I didn’t know who you are now that you say it hereyeah so I want to buy this torch that’s
fantastic you know if you give me about 10 minutes
I’ll take you back to the tech area let me get the torch set up you can try it
out make sure it’s the right torch that you want to use okay Wow any about 10
minutes I’ll have everything set up for you cool see you later
yes sir what an amazing company although my father founded Rio Grande in 1944 and
I’ve worked here since 1971 when I started I was the eighth employee
and six of us were family and we were in about a two thousand five minute script
but cinderblock building that my father built in 1958 and we survived there and
walk in tree there was no nothing had a stop number
it was if you ask me for a pair of pliers I would go bring out several pair
of pliers and play which one do you like and I would write it up and go to the
cash register with you but in 1970s there was a big boom of southwestern
style jewelry and we just happen to be in the right place at the right time and
we brew or if you ended up doing a catalog as a effort to try very hard to
keep our people and pay our bills Hey okay so when you’re ready to try it out
if you get in there you can do it okay so Molly thank you for helping me
understand the house around these I don’t like to be that’s other to follow all the way
around there you go I like the top I like the frame control
and I like that I can use it for silver gold and even platinum probably I’m glad
you like the demonstration but I think what you like even more is well they’re
processing your order I’m gonna take you down the hall and introduce you to sky drive manager will give the ideas or
concepts maybe she wants more rings more earrings I will then design them on one
of these many CAD programs we use three design here and I then have the option
of either doing 3d prints like something like this is 3d printed or we can do CNC
milling for example this bracelet here was carved out of wax on this Nomad mill
right over here so this mill cut this wax flat once we cast this it was like
so and I’ve got another one here because I’m going to scatter some stones about
on it once this was cast I then put it on a bracelet mandrel and formed it we
can make a rubber mold on this for production let’s take a look alrighty Len with the mold for this sir
right that’s it can we put in the frame nice it’s an amazing mold for him all
right let’s get an injection on this Lenora can you give me an injection on
this mold please all right once the waxes are treed on the tree
like so they are weighed up and we know because of the base weight that is a
given that how much the wax itself weighs we can then translate that
mathematically into how much metal that’s going to take the next step in
the investment is mixed up here and poured down into the flask itself once
once we have all of these flasks we let them sit for a few hours
and then they’re loaded into the ovens and they’re gonna be burned out for
generally it’s about an 18 hour burn out and that will then of course melt all of
the waxes out of the the trees and it leaves a cavity inside that investment
that’s the exact impression that metal gets melted under a reducing atmosphere
and poured into that flask then goes to a cooling table
and we’ll eventually then be quenched in water
we’ve got quenching tables that will be the excess investment after which these
are sorted and put into pickle pots over here
once the flasks are pickled then they will be blasted water blasted to clean
off any of the other excess investment and they’re ready to go out onto the
floor to begin clipping hi Pablo how are you come on in thank
you right Diego all my sins well this started about 20 years ago we had this
this problem everybody had the problem we would have two flasks in the burnout
furnace at the same time we would take them and cast them exactly the best as
we could and one would come out one way and the other one would come out a
different way so we had inconsistency in the casting process and so we started to
work on trying to build consistency into it and this is the third generation
first was the Jay 10 then the Jay Z now we have the there was a 510 and then 610
615 so these machines are very sophisticated and they they don’t do
just temperature control they do melt control and so they’re looking at
feedback about 25,000 times a second and they’re looking at the at what’s going
on in the in the casting process to to to make sure that we don’t overheat the
metal we don’t under heat the metal and we do everything in the right sequence
and now we’re bringing this technology into a smaller machine for the the
smaller factory and so if you want to see we never showed it to anybody before
now so you’re the first one we can go this way okay Pablo this is our new tech
engineering lab this is one of our engineers and so this is the this is
going to be the flow logic series in a smaller size for the factory that’s not
doing so much quantity capacity is 200 cc’s which is about one
point eight kilos of making pair of gold oh you want to pedal I gotta take them
to our CTO more metal than you’ve ever seen Wow we take really good care of our sheet so
when we cut the sheet we’ll will write on the sheet the the last three digits
of our material number that we sell to our customers and then we do a very
tedious job of packaging or achieved so we’ll roll it here and this tissue paper
will eventually place it within cardboard so no matter what happens the
moment it leaves this room you don’t have to worry about it scratching you
don’t have to worry about it getting dented we take very good care of our
sheet here is our customer service area we take where five thousand calls a week
and we have some of the best trained customer service agents in the business this is our saw Bell training room and
so we’re getting ready to set up for another class mm-hmm and we teach
associates here all the fundamentals of jewelry making so they can better answer
calls and we have a lot of customers that come in for specialty classes like
Bonnie do classes and hydraulic forming so yes this is our classroom and you
want to see where we do the view tube of course I want all right let’s go thank
you this is a hi what an amazing day I’m ready to be
but what is my start no worries Pablo we’ve actually taken
care of everything for you your torches already packed up and on its way to
Spain oh thank you so much thank you

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