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View Full Version : Help - Soldering Silver?


GinaJ
08-03-2004, 02:46 PM
Hi,
Can anyone explain to me what is involved with soldering silver? I'd like to be able to solder silver links shut. What supplies are needed, and how is it done?
Any help is greatly appreciated!!!
Thanks!

Barrie
08-03-2004, 04:48 PM
I suggest a good book. You're playing with chemicals and fire, so best to know what you're doing. If you can find a class in your area, even better. Even if it is just to get started. I do have a few soldering tips on my website, but by no means a complete tutorial (more like a refresher for those who've done it before, but are unsure of the steps). Check them out here: Soldering Tips (http://www.itsmystore.com/windermere/files/Basic_Soldering.doc)

Good luck!

TheBlueBetween
08-04-2004, 04:51 PM
Barrie - Thank you for the link and the instructions! They are 10 X better than what I got in my 8 week class at the community college that I hated.

I've actually been thinking about trying again - because there are things I WANT to do and need to be able to solder to do it... I just discovered you can soldier with a little kitchen torch and get set up to do it all pretty inexpensively - vs. the thousands of $$$ my instructor implied you needed to have all the "right" tools.

Pam

Barrie
08-04-2004, 05:48 PM
The little kitchen torch is great for small things like jump rings, charms, small earrings, etc, but if you want to do rings ro bracelets, then you'll need the extra oomph of a bigger torch. This is the one I recommend most to my students. Shark Torch on Ebay (http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&category=11774&item=4916240178&rd=1&ssPageName=WDVW) It's economical, and very effective and much safer to have a 1 pound bottle of propane in my studio than a 25 pound tank of acetylene!! I use it all the time now instead of my very expensive acetylene torch. Gotta love econimical!!!

tamjai
08-04-2004, 07:16 PM
[QUOTE=Barrie]The little kitchen torch is great for small things like jump rings,QUOTE]
what is this? i bought a butane thing that claimed to solder but it didn't work - i would love to be able to do simple soldering..
tam

Hiway
08-04-2004, 08:34 PM
[QUOTE=Barrie]The little kitchen torch is great for small things like jump rings,QUOTE]
what is this? i bought a butane thing that claimed to solder but it didn't work - i would love to be able to do simple soldering..
tam

AH HA!

Is it the Butane Pencil Torch.... called The Blue Blazer.... by any chance??!

I've had two of these guys for over a year now; you have to keep a freshly filled one next to you and switch them around, as they contain little fuel.

Do they work? Well, they certainly don't do all they claim they will! I can solder little tiny sterling jump rings, but that is about it (and they claim these melt glass rods.... yeah, I'll bet..... :rolleyes:

Best from Claudia

Barrie
08-04-2004, 08:36 PM
[QUOTE=Barrie]The little kitchen torch is great for small things like jump rings,QUOTE]
what is this? i bought a butane thing that claimed to solder but it didn't work - i would love to be able to do simple soldering..
tam

It's a butane torch, but they'renot all created equally!! Here's a good one (http://www.leevalley.com/wood/page.asp?SID=&ccurrency=2&page=32148&category=1,43456,43469) (one of many, but gives you the basic idea of what it should kind of look like).

tamjai
08-04-2004, 08:53 PM
ah hah! - that example is larger than the one i bought - Lee Valleyhere I come - maybe they should consider a jewellers catalogue with all of the great tools, organizers and do-dads that we get from them!
tam

GinaJ
08-05-2004, 10:19 PM
Thanks for the help, Barrie, those are great instructions. But if there is an alternative to what I am trying to do, PLEASE let me know!!! lol! I just want to make sure that when I add a toggle to a link bracelet, that the links connecting the clasps are secure. Soldering them shut is all I can come up with.......

Barrie
08-06-2004, 01:54 AM
Thanks for the help, Barrie, those are great instructions. But if there is an alternative to what I am trying to do, PLEASE let me know!!! lol! I just want to make sure that when I add a toggle to a link bracelet, that the links connecting the clasps are secure. Soldering them shut is all I can come up with.......

You could try sterling split rings. No soldering and very secure!! (just a thought! :) )

GinaJ
08-06-2004, 09:57 PM
The split rings are what I am currently using.... I don't know, I'm just not happy with the way it looks...is this what most people use? (lol, I make maybe one of these bracelets a month....in a good month...)

beclectic
08-06-2004, 10:19 PM
I use jump rings from Urban Maille. The thicker and smaller a jump ring is the stronger it is so use the smallest and thickest that looks good with what you are doing.

I've never had a unsoldered jump ring open accidently except one time when a necklace got caught on something and practically pulled me to the floor before the jump ring opened. I'm glad that jump ring opened.

Here is a link to a thread we have discussing jump rings. Jump Ring solutions (http://www.wetcanvas.com/forums/showthread.php?t=182543)

Glitzy Glass
08-06-2004, 11:44 PM
There is a fantastic online course that shows you how to use a propane torch to solder - the man who runs it is Don Norris a fantastic guy. I did the course about 2 years ago and loved every minute of it! Here is a link to his site - http://silversmithing.homestead.com/SilverClasses1.html

Nolly
08-09-2004, 04:37 AM
There are several places that sell soldered jump rings ... no fuss, no muss.

I get mine from monsterslayer (http://www.monsterslayer.com/miscpages/SSJumpRing.htm)

I totally agree that jump rings look nicer than split rings, which is why I was so happy to find that I could get them soldered closed.

Take care,

Nolly

LazyEights
08-10-2004, 10:48 AM
Does anyone have any thoughts about soldering dissimilar materials? I'm thinking of silver to copper and silver to gold.

How about spot welding as an alternative to soldering?

Lazy

BlueBuddha
08-10-2004, 08:25 PM
The thicker and smaller a jump ring is the stronger it is so use the smallest and thickest that looks good with what you are doing.


Yep, this is all true. As a mailler who goes through hundreds of jump rings every day, let me make a few other suggestions to using jump rings as an alternative to soldering:

--make sure you are NOT using sterling jump rings that are made from dead soft wire. Aim for at least half-hard. When in doubt or for a particularly weighty piece, use full- or spring-hard.
--If you are using gauges less than 18 (.04mm) I recommend doubling the rings. With doubled rings, if there is enough space you can also "mobius" them, meaning have the doubled rings going through one another, instead of simply lying side-by-side.
--As others have said, split rings can work great.
--Test your closed jump rings. connect two chains to it (or two pieces of wire) and pull, gently at first, then with stronger and stronger tugs. See what it takes for the jump ring to pop open. If you aren't happy with the results, try a thicker gauge, or smaller inner diameter, or harder wire, etc.

Barrie
08-11-2004, 02:46 AM
Does anyone have any thoughts about soldering dissimilar materials? I'm thinking of silver to copper and silver to gold.

How about spot welding as an alternative to soldering?

Lazy

I have no idea about welding (yet! :evil: one day....), but as for silver, copper, gold, brass, etc. I use multiple metals a lot. I usually use silver solder as it is readily available, cost effective, etc.

Hope this helps.

schweets
08-11-2004, 03:33 PM
Here is a link I found with pictures of the supplies. This site also has some nice quick instructions for various weaves.

http://derakon.chainmailstore.com/solder.html

Barbara Barteau
07-05-2005, 09:01 PM
Earlier today I saw a message on this forum, maybe not this thread, that had a link to working with metals without soldering. One picture had a silver piece and a copper piece, textured, and it was held together with what looks like a length of silver. It had instructions how to do it. I am losing my mind trying to find it again. Thanks.

TurtleBay Jewelry
07-05-2005, 11:01 PM
Riveting Tutorial can be found on my website forum:

Riveting (http://p097.ezboard.com/fturtlebayjewelryforumsfrm9.showMessage?topicID=2.topic)

Cheers!

~Danielle

LazyEights
07-06-2005, 12:22 AM
That is very cool. Thank you so much!

Barbara Barteau
07-06-2005, 06:16 AM
Thank you Danielle. I am going to a metal texturing class tomorrow and I wanted to take a copy of the instructions.

Nolita
08-17-2005, 04:04 PM
just removing reply, couldn't find the new thread button, and tried using reply:(