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Wire Hardness

Wire hardness refers to the malleability or stiffness of a wire and is typically called "Full-Hard" for extremely stiff wire, "Half-Hard" for stiff wire that is malleable, and "Dead-Soft" for wire that is very easy to bend.

Dead-soft is the easiest to manipulate without tools, but it does not hold its shape as well as harder wires. When used with thinner gauges, it is great for bead wrapping.

Half-hard will retain its shape better for jump rings and findings, but it is not as easy to manipulate, especially in the heavier gauges.

Full-hard is very difficult to change shape without the help of the proper tools or processes. See the tables below for common gauge sizes. For more information on wire gauges, click here.

 Brown and Sharpe Gauge Chart 
Gauge  Inches  Millimeters 
 0  0.325 8.26 
 2  0.257 6.54 
 4  0.204 5.19 
 6  0.162  4.12
 8  0.128  3.26
 10  0.102  2.59
 12  0.081  2.05
 14  0.064  1.63
 16  0.051  1.29
 18  0.04  1.02
 19  0.036  0.912
 20  0.032  0.812
 21  0.028  0.723
 22  0.025  0.644
 23  0.023  0.573
 24  0.02  0.511
 25  0.018  0.455
 26  0.016  0.405
 27  0.014  0.36
 28  0.013  0.321
 29  0.011  0.286
 30  0.01  0.255
 32  0.008  0.2019
 34  0.0063  0.16

 

 Wire Conversion
 Gauge  ft/Toz
 14  4.65
 16  7.5
 18  12
 20  19
 22  31
 24  48
 26  77
 28  125
 30  200