Inspired by the classic toy, the Pin Wheel is an interesting gem design that’s easy to cut. This design by Jeff Graham was voted one of the 12 best of 2000 by the Columbia-Willamette Faceters’ Guild.
By Jeff R. Graham 1 minute read
Pin Wheel gem design by Jeff Graham © 1998.

Pin Wheel gem design by Jeff Graham © 1998.

You can find cutting instructions for the Pin Wheel here.

A Pin Wheel in Rose Quartz

Remember those pin wheel toys we played with as children? I wanted to design a cut that looks and flashes just like one. So, I came up with this. It’s easier than it looks.

The quartz I used for this example has a nice color, but it’s a little on the silky side. As a result, the photos look a little fuzzy. However, the silk did cause some interesting color and dispersion when I photographed the stone. The blades of the “pin wheel” show pretty well.

Cutting Remarks

The girdle and P1 form a zigzag, and the tiers are every other one for meets. When you cut it, you’ll see what I mean. It makes a very nice, interesting stone in sizes from 1 to 16 carats.

This design works well in lab-created sapphire, spinel, and YAG (synthetic garnet).

If you cut this in a gem material with a lower refractive index (like quartz), the blade pattern tends to appear more pronounced.

Enjoy cutting your own Pin Wheel.

Pin Wheel - array

Random – Cosine – ISO

Detailed faceting instructions by Jeff Graham available at The Rock Peddler