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Silversmithing and jewellery

SILVERSMITHING
Silversmithing and jewellery
by
Brian Allensby ©
Using original sketches

With insipration from Alan King, Keith Smith and Paul de Lamerie

Silversmithing and jewellery making have usually come under the elementary heading, of beaten metalwork, as
indeed some of the processes are but not all, so this correct heading is being used here.
The materials used in silversmithing are chosen for their malleability and ductility. Owing to the high cost of
silver, copper and gilding metal are often used as these can then be silverplated if required. Brass is used
when its colour is important, but when it is annealed it is too hard for most hollowing processes. Pewter and its
more modern counterpart Britannia metal, which contains no lead, is is more expensive than copper and
presents difficulties with its low melting point when soldered. Aluminium too presents difficulties in soldering,
and is therefore more often used in thin sheet or cast form. The chief gauges involved are from 14 swg
(2.032mm) to 26 swg (0.457mm) although 20 swg (0.036mm) for domestic articles and 22 swg (0.711mm) for
jewellery are commonly used.

Tools and Equipment
Many of the tools and equipment require will be in general use in the workshop, but a few are kept specially for
silversmithing.

Acid Bath
For the cleaning and removal of oxides a solution of ten parts water to one part sulphuric acid in a container
made of stoneware or lead is used. The container may be heated or not. For small work a Pyrex dish may be
used. In all cases a lid should be fitted to the top of the bath to prevent splashing and a sink with running water
should be adjacent. Heated baths should have their fumes extracted by a fan. When mixing a solution for the
bath the acid should always be added to the water. Copper or brass tongs or a nickel basket must be used for
holding work in the acid.
If iron, or a different metal to that which is being cleaned is put in or left in the pickle, plating of the surface of
the metal being cleaned will occur.

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Silversmithing and jewellery

Hammers
A number of hammers made from forged cast steel in sizes ranging from 0.11 kilograms (4 oz) to 0.28
kilograms (10 oz) and with various heads suitable for different operations are available. The faces of the
hammers should be kept polished, clean and free from marks or damage to work will result.

Hammers and Mallets

Stakes
Many stakes are available and special purpose ones can be made, but all must have highly polished and
unmarked surfaces if good work is to be achieved. Stakes may be held in a socket, vice or in the case of the
stake heads in a horse.

Raising stakes

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Silversmithing and jewellery

Stakes

Blocks and Sandbags
Hollowing blocks consist of various sized hollows gouged out of an elm or beech tree trunk or a 152mm (6")
block, the block being more convenient as it can be held in a vice, whilst the tree trunk stands on the floor.
Sandbags are leather bags filled with sand in sizes from 102mm. (4") to 254mm (10").

        Block                            Sandbag

Jewellers Snips
These are obtained in the straight or bent pattern and are 178mm (7") in length and light in weight.

Jewellers Snips

Repoussé and Matting Punches
These punches are used for decoration, the Repoussþ punches producing a plain finish.

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into a shallow. This is carried out on a revolving hearth with a blowpipe. thus restoring it to a soft and ductile structure. which by raising the temperature of the metal. Hollowing When the disc has been cut the burrs on the edges are removed with a smooth file or paper. thus preventing injury to hands and also preventing the small burrs from breaking off. The disc should then be softened by a process known as annealing. entering the mallet face and damaging the surface of the disc when stuck.Silversmithing and jewellery Repoussé punches Processes Hollowing or blocking This is a method of shaping a flat disc. of the required diameter.html[7/15/2014 7:45:35 PM] . dish or bowl in a hollow in a wooden block or Sandbag with a round ended bossing mallet or Blocking hammer.ba-education.com/for/hobbies/silversmithing. The disc is revolved slowly and a bushy flame slowly and uniformly warming the metal until it is dull red at 650ºC http://www. the deformed grains recrystallise into new undistorted grains.

All work must be cleaned after each heating or the oxide and the impurities on the surface will be hammered into the surface of the metal and a good final finish will not be achieved.html[7/15/2014 7:45:35 PM] . as sudden quenching in water could alter its shape. The disc is then turned until a full circle has been achieved and then the next circle is commenced until the middle has been reached.ba-education. The disc should then be placed on the block or sandbag with the centre the on the underside. The oxide and impurities are then removed by pickling in the acid bath. This process is repeated until the required shape is achieved and is the preliminary preceding process to raising. When the work becomes work-hardened through repeated hammering or the centre has been reached the metal must again be annealed or cracks will appear. http://www.com/for/hobbies/silversmithing. When the domes are required to be cut from the sheet they are cut with a cutting tool punch. then dried in sawdust.Silversmithing and jewellery The work is them allowed to cool slowly. The disc is then removed with tongs or basket from the acid and washed thoroughly under running water. Guide lines The disc is then tilted so that the nearside is in the hollow of the block and struck with the bossing mallet or blocking hammer about 10mm (3/8") from the near edge. cleaned with pumice powder and brush. Doming Hollowing very small work such as the legs of small articles and for the decoration of jewellery is carried out using a brass doming block which consists of a number of different sized concave recesses into which fit tempered steel or wood punches. The top should be marked with a pencil line from the centre to the outside and a number of concentric circles drawn with a pencil compass to act as a starting radius line and guide lines when hollowing. although in the early stages of forming quenching in water can be permitted. If crinkles or buckles are formed at the edges these should be hammered out as they appear.

Silversmithing and jewellery Doming Sinking A similar process to hollowing except that hammering does not start at the periphery but a measured distance in leaving a flat rim. Annealing then takes place as in hollowing.com/for/hobbies/silversmithing. If a circular article is being sunk two pins may be placed in the wood block to help guide the flat surface of the rim. The rim and the base surface are kept flat with a small mallet or by placing each surface in http://www.ba-education. Sinking To commence the disc is marked out to the width of the desired rim and the depth of recess. Next the sinking block is placed in a vice and the horizontally held metal sunk into the shape on the wood with a Bossing mallet or Blocking hammer whilst being held in place and rotated with the other hand.html[7/15/2014 7:45:35 PM] .

Any unevenness is then cut away with snips. by striking the metal on its outside instead of its inside. The article will now require planishing and then the base flattened on a bottoming stake with a mallet. tested with a try square to see if it is upright and then a line scribed round the top with a scribing block.) raising hammer with all its sharp corners rounded. which only allows for shallow shapes. If the work tends to have only one side concave raising should be concentrated on that area until it has been removed. This should be continued until the shape has been put right. In modern workshops lathes for spinning (fig 439) have superseded raising for repetitive articles which are then finished by hand. If the sides tend to become concave raising should be commenced further up the side. The article will now require planishing and then the base flattened on a bottoming stake with a mallet. starting with light blows or a ridge will appear. When the true shape has been obtained the article is now annealed and cleaned and is ready for planishing. When the base is quite flat the article should be placed on a surface plate.html[7/15/2014 7:45:35 PM] . which may be purchased ready made or made from mild steel which is then polished. The hollowed disc is then placed against the stake so that the end of the stake is at the back of the line at which you wish to commence. Subsequent raisings are now carried out until the desired shape is achieved.Silversmithing and jewellery turn on a surface plate.ba-education. The edge may then need thickening or caulking after which it will need rubbing down on a flat stone or emery cloth held on a flat surface. side. The metal is now struck with the raising hammer making sure that the toe of the hammer gets well down (fig 260). The disc is then slightly hollowed and then marked out with concentric pencil circles. and polished.com/for/hobbies/silversmithing. The process is then repeated until a full circle is completed. Continue the process until within 6mm (1/4") of the top and finish the last coarse with a boxwood or hide mallet as the edge may be showing signs of waving and if struck with hammer it may stretch. raising is the traditional method for obtaining taller shapes. without a steam. placing a piece of wood on it and striking it with a hammer. Work which is usually a disc for a circular shaped article is first annealed and cleaned and subsequently annealed and cleaned after each raising or course. The tools used are the raising stake. and a hardwood mallet. Raising Unlike hollowing.25 kilogramme (8 oz. Raising It usually takes three blows before the click of the metal is heard and the metal can be rotated. A 0. Snarling This method of hammering from the inside is used when a tall raised form or a narrow necked job requires its http://www.

After each blow the job is rotated to its next position and the iron struck again until the desired shape is achieved. so that the head rebounds against the inside of the job. http://www.ba-education. The edge of flat sheet is thickened by placing the sheet between folding bars and hammering the edge with a collet hammer whilst other shapes are held on a sandbag. Snarling Caulking To strengthen the edge of sheet metal it is thickened by hammering on its edge.com/for/hobbies/silversmithing.Silversmithing and jewellery body truing up or filling out. Work should be caulked before annealing or after it has work-hardened otherwise buckling can result.html[7/15/2014 7:45:35 PM] . This then adds to the natural thickening of the raising and gives a tapering thickness. striking the arm of the iron with a hammer. The operation consists of positioning the job on the head of the snarling iron.

The hammer must rise and fall constantly over the same spot on the stake. The hammer is then lifted and the surface of the article is lightly struck with a wiping motion. cleaned and polished.ba-education. http://www. Starting from the centre. To start planishing the free hand firmly holds the article and will after each tap of the hammer rotate the article. The tools required are a planishing hammer with one domed and one flat polished face. no matter how it was formed. which will produce a clear ringing note. and then small or large facets will be produced depending on the weight of the tap. a collet hammer for concave surfaces and a number of suitable highly polished stacks. The planishing hammer should then be paced on the article. whilst the work is rotated. Concentric circles are then drawn 5mm (3/16") apart on the surface with a pencil compass to act as guide lines.Silversmithing and jewellery Caulking Planishing This is the finishing process which trues the shape of the article. each facet being of uniform size should overlap the previous one and the one on the preceding row. The work to be planished should first be annealed. A stake with a slightly smaller radius than the article being planished should than be got ready and the article placed on it. and removes all the previous working marks from the surface.com/for/hobbies/silversmithing. each circle of the guide lines should be planished in turn. thus indicating a true contact with the stake. thus holding it in position on stake.html[7/15/2014 7:45:35 PM] .

html[7/15/2014 7:45:35 PM] .Silversmithing and jewellery Planishing When the whole surface has been completed it may be necessary to planished it two or three times to remove all traces of marks. Its prime object is to smooth and true the article.ba-education. Next the joints are prepared by filing or scraping to an angle of 45ºC and the sides are then brought up. for raised articles. http://www. may be made by developing them from a flat sheet and seaming them with solder. On completion of planishing the facets are buffed out unless they are to remain for decoration.com/for/hobbies/silversmithing. although the facets look attractive on some articles. In the process of planishing the metal is hardened. Seamed Work Further articles and attachments. not to decorate it. If a cylindrical article tends to have a concave side surface lateral planishing is carried out. forming nice sharp corners. Box making First the shape of the required rectangular box is developed on the flat sheet and cut out. stretched and thinned.

Box lid cutting thus allowing the air to escape when it is soldered. The base is usually the sheet that has just been soldered in.ba-education.com/for/hobbies/silversmithing. When the box is complete it is then sawn through. If the box is to have a base and a lid of the same shape a sheet is made to fit the open side of the box. Before the sheet is fitted.html[7/15/2014 7:45:35 PM] . with a brass backed saw. and the seams fluxed and soldered. The edges are then thickened and strengthened by soldering strip to them. wired. fluxed and soldered.Silversmithing and jewellery Box development The box is then then wired. on a line where the lid is to be cut off. Box edge strengthening Drawn wire and tube This is a method of reducing the diameter of wire or closing a tub by annealing it and pulling it through a series of shaped holes in a draw plate held in a vice or on a draw bench. http://www. A corner slot is cut. the previously soldered joints should have an application of jewellers rouge and loan to prevent them running. thus giving a lid and a base.

or chenier for hinges is needed a strip of metal approximately three times the diameter required is first creased and then drawn to close it.ba-education.com/for/hobbies/silversmithing.Silversmithing and jewellery The object to be drawn should be tapered and placed in the first lubricated hole in the draw plate and pulled through with tongs in each successive hole until the required diameter is achieved. Hinges are made by fitting short lengths of chenier with their seam in contact with the metal surface to which they are to be soldered.html[7/15/2014 7:45:35 PM] . If a tub. http://www.

The twists can be used as handles or mouldings which are soldered on to an article for decoration.com/for/hobbies/silversmithing. Twisting By bending wire or section round jigs made from wood and steel pins or nails may more decorations can be made.ba-education. Wires can also be used singly for decoration and as strengthening edges.Silversmithing and jewellery Hing Tubes Decorative wires Many beautiful and interesting patterns can be by twisting strip or wire of various sections and thicknesses held in a vice at one end and twisted with a hand drill at the other.html[7/15/2014 7:45:35 PM] . http://www.

It may be fitted by placing a piece of emery paper on the surface to which it is to fit and rubbing the matching fitting surface on it until a good fit is achieved. seamed and planished. The bezel is then pushed against the side http://www. a number of simple settings are shown here. cleaned and polished. which consists of a thin strip of metal fitted closely to the stone to be held and then soldered to the desired object.com/for/hobbies/silversmithing.ba-education. hollow handle or a handle mounting a shape is developed. shaped. Spout Settings A many semi precious stones can be purchased for a few new pence. the most simple being the bezel.Silversmithing and jewellery Bending Spouts and irregular shapes To produce a spout.html[7/15/2014 7:45:35 PM] .

Settings and Bezels Jewellers findings A fastening is usually required to hold jewellery in place and being referred to as a finding this may be made or purchased ready-made.ba-education.com/for/hobbies/silversmithing.Silversmithing and jewellery of the stone to hold it firmly in place. Jewellers Findings http://www.html[7/15/2014 7:45:35 PM] .

The mixture is prepared by melting 14 parts of Swedish pitch and slowly stirring in 1 part of tallow with 14 parts of plaster of Paris.html[7/15/2014 7:45:35 PM] . The metal to be decorated is supported held in a pitch mixture supported in a tray or a hemispherical bowl. if supported in a circular ring. Repoussé punches To commence. http://www. defining and texturing of the metal with punches after the Repoussé relief is finished. Special ones may be made and they are tapped with the broad face of a Repoussé hammer. allows it to be worked at all angles.Silversmithing and jewellery Decoration Repoussé and chasing Repoussé is basically the forming of high and low relief with punches. The pitch mixture must be firm enough to support the metal and yet resilient enough to allow the metal to be driven into it by the punches.ba-education. so that when it is tapped radially it moves towards the worker. the design is transferred from your previously prepared drawing to the work by means of Keil or carbon paper and the resulting lines are lightly scribed. Many cast tool steel punches which are hardened and tempered are available. Before the work is paced on the pitch for working. The design is usually started with a tracing tool which is held at an angle to the work. The work is then inverted and placed on the pitch and the design embossed the back.com/for/hobbies/silversmithing. making a smooth indented line. whereas chasing is the. from the back of the metal. which. it should be lightly oiled to facilitate the eventual removal by warming with a blowpipe and cleaning with a rag dipped in paraffin. Light gauge metal may be punched if placed on a sheet of lead.

The graver is shaped and sharpened so that it tends to raise the handle when it is run parallel over the surface of the metal. Many gravers are available. Texturing can be carried out with the many matting and individually made decorative punches.Silversmithing and jewellery Chasing To sharpen up the design the work can then be reversed and the face chased with tracing punches. but the most used is the square graver which is angled so that its handle fits comfortably into the palm of the hand (fig 275). The paper is then placed on the surface to be http://www. Sharpening should be commenced on an Indian stone and finished on 000 blue black emery paper held on a flat surface.html[7/15/2014 7:45:35 PM] . Graver The surface of the metal to be engraved should be polished. then Plasticine rubbed on the back of the tracing paper. Engraving This is the decorative cutting of the surface of the metal with a tool steel graver.com/for/hobbies/silversmithing. The design to be transferred should be traced.ba-education.

or lower) Hydrochloric acid 8 parts http://www. Engraving Etching Etching is a process by which the surface of a metal may be decorated by the controlled eating away by acid of areas of its surface not covered by an acid resist. away from the worker.ba-education. a slight movement of the graver. String cradle If the surface is laid face upwards gentle brushing with a feather should be used to prevent the sediment and bubbles forming.html[7/15/2014 7:45:35 PM] . A “Pyrex” or polythene container being used for an etching bath although a wall of wax round a small area to be etched is sufficient. To commence engraving. flat work is held on a sand-bag and the work rotated on this with only. The work should be laid sloping face down and prevented from a touching the bottom of the bath by means a string cradle in order that the sediment falls away. Gold (18 k.com/for/hobbies/silversmithing. Acid mordants Many acid solutions may be used and the following are a suitable selection for the metals named.Silversmithing and jewellery engraved and the design transferred with a blunt scriber.

vegetable gums and asphaltum.Silversmithing and jewellery Nitric acid 4 parts Iron perchloride 1 part Water 40 parts Silver. iron and steel Nitric acid 1 part Water 3 parts Aluminium Iron Perchloride 1 part Water 1 part Copper.com/for/hobbies/silversmithing. to which a few drops of ammonia have been added. brass Iron perchloride 3 parts Water 1 part Metal Preparation The surface on which the acid resist is to be attached must be thoroughly cleaned of all grease and oxides. Wax removal by etching needle http://www. are available. consisting of wax. then the part to be decorated is removed with various etching needles. each being suitable for a particular job. The work is then thoroughly rinsed. Wax Work can be dipped warm into molten beeswax.ba-education.html[7/15/2014 7:45:35 PM] . Resists Various acid resistants. is used for the cleaning. A fine pumice powder and water. gilding metal.

round the design. The first is by means of dripping and trailing a treacle consistency varnish over the surface to be decorated.com/for/hobbies/silversmithing. The edges will require two coats as the varnish tends to creep away from them. Several methods of decoration can be achieved with varnish. the work is placed in warm water and the surface stroked with cotton wool. Wax pencils may be used for stopping out lines not required. The two basic types contain either asphaltum powder or shellac mixed with turpentine or methylated spirit respectively. on the front edges and back. http://www. The second is by painting round the lines of a previously transferred design. Lift ground paint Then all this is covered with the stopping out varnish. Stopping out varnish When the varnish is dry. or dissolved off in benzine or acetone. gum Arabic and “Isinglass” in a small amount of water.html[7/15/2014 7:45:35 PM] . Stopping out varnish is used for protecting 'parts not to be etched by the acid. The third method in which the design is first painted on with a slow-drying substance known as lift ground made from equal parts treacle. if placed in the acid wet. or it may be bought ready made. Stopping out varnish Various recipes are available for making varnish.ba-education. under biting will occur.Silversmithing and jewellery After etching the wax is then removed by heating the work and wiping off. The varnish takes several minutes to dry and. The part painted with lift ground will then come away leaving the design ready.

the dabber rubbed on the surface and rocked in a. 2 parts asphaltum and 1 part pitch (Swedish or Burgundy). the wax and pitch are melted in a saucepan. Etching is by needle. or better still red Keil paper.com/for/hobbies/silversmithing. Dabber The previously cleaned work is then warmed. stirred and the asphaltum added.html[7/15/2014 7:45:35 PM] .ba-education. Carbon. If made. Transferring the design The design is traced from the original. The edges and back are then painted with an acid resist. circular motion. The work is again heated until a glazed even unburned deposit is formed. http://www.Silversmithing and jewellery Lift ground paint removed Solid ball ground Being made into the shape of a small 50mm round ball the ground may be bought ready-made from 2 parts beeswax. After 20 minutes the is poured into warm water and rolled into the appropriate sized balls. secured with adhesive tape to the surface to be etched. In use the ground is placed in a piece of fine cloth and the ends brought up and tied to form a handle thereby forming a dabber. is placed between the two surfaces and the design transferred by using a pencil which will leave a fine line.

http://www. The cakes are then crushed and ground dry. Four main types of enamel one produced: opaque (not seen through). transparent (seen through). or ground ready for use.com/for/hobbies/silversmithing. The colours are obtained by adding varying proportions of metallic oxides and opacity is obtained by the addition of oxides of lead and tin. The enamel is produced by smelting the constituents in a fireclay crucible at 1150ºC to 1250ºC and pouring it out to form cakes on metal slabs. Preparation of Enamel Enamel frit is supplied in either cake form. opalescent (rainbow reflections) and translucent (allowing the light to pass through). The amount of lead and potassium hydroxide determines the degree of hardness and brilliance of the enamels. feldspar and quartz with antimony. Composition and manufacture The base of jewellery enamel is a clear glass flux called “fret” l which consists of silica.html[7/15/2014 7:45:35 PM] . crushed and washed. Enamelling Enamelling dates back 3500 years when the Egyptians started using it for jewellery decoration. Enamel is a fusion of glass on metal background and should not be confused with household synthetic paint. (soda) and potassium hydroxide.Silversmithing and jewellery Design transfer The design is then painted in with the acid resist.ba-education. Steel enamels are basically composed of borax. Aluminium enamels are available but due to their low melting point few colours are available. titanium or zirconium added for opacity. red lead oxide. Cake form The irregular 12mm (1/2") thick cake should be crushed by means of a mortar and pestle.

com/for/hobbies/silversmithing.html[7/15/2014 7:45:35 PM] . The frit is then washed to clean and separate the frit particles. Ground Opaque enamels ape obtainable to pass through a 60 mesh and transparent enamels to pass through a 30 mash. This is done by allowing a tap to run slowly onto a dish containing the frit and as the action progresses the milky consistency will clear. http://www.ba-education. All enamels should be stored in air-tight jars or decomposition takes place and shows itself as white flakes. this enamel is suitable for decorative effects when fired onto enamelled surfaces. The frit is then dried. Transparent frits are especially susceptible and are left with milky and pitted patches after fusion. Drain off and allow to dry.Silversmithing and jewellery Pestle and Mortar until it passes through a 60 mesh. Wash enamel under running water. Crushed and Washed Purchased crushed.

Gold: Enamelling gold is available. The job is then placed on a clean surface and any remaining scale is removed with pumice power and then washed. To prepare.Silversmithing and jewellery Metals for Enamelling Copper: This is the ideal base as it is easily shaped. etched surface. first take 14 grams (1/2oz) of gum tragacanth and mix to a creamy paste with methylated spirits. A better method of degreasing is to anneal the steel at 700 . then pickled for 20 minutes in a 10% hydrochloric acid solution until it has a clean. light grey. Preparation of the metal To ensure adhesion of the enamel to the metal the oxides and greases must be removed from its surface. but mild steel can be used. Non ferrous Degreasing is carried out by heating the job to a dull red 800ºC and plunging in water. The following methods are intended as an introduction to these techniques.ba-education. scrubbed with pumice powder. being most careful to avoid handling.com/for/hobbies/silversmithing. Application and firing Enamel can be applied to the surface of the metal in a number of different ways each depending on the effect and decoration required on the end product. http://www. Silver: Fine silver or enamelling silver should be used and several firings should be avoided if possible. Gum preparation Gum Arabic or tragacanth is used to attach the enamel to the metal surface as this does not leave any deposit when heated. Add the mixture to 1 litre (1 quart) of cold water and allow to stand overnight. Steel: Enamelling steel is recommended. but much use is prohibitive due to the price.15 minutes and then washed thoroughly in hot water.html[7/15/2014 7:45:35 PM] . Aluminium: New developments are coming about in this field. thus removing the scale by this action. but at the moment there are limitations. Finally wash thoroughly in hot water and dry. Washing in hot water is followed by neutralising the acid remaining on the surface by washing in a 1% solution of sodium carbonate. although copper heading or blistering may occur. For high class work the metal should be pickled to a clean bright finish by immersing in 10% sulphuric acid for 10 .75ºC for 3 to 4 minutes. Gilding Metal: 90/10 composition is recommended. Ferrous To remove the oil from the surface of the steel it can be wiped with a paraffin rag. rinsed in water and dried with a clean cloth. but not more than two firings are recommended or the zinc will burn out and discolour the enamel. The fingers should not be allowed to touch the surface any during any operation or fusion of the enamel will be prevented.

html[7/15/2014 7:45:35 PM] . by cutting a hole. made from 60 or 100 mesh phosphor bronze lawn. Dry and fire for 3 or 4 minutes at 820ºC. Dust the enamel evenly on the work held in a clean tray The job is now ready for firing. Paint all surfaces to be enamelled with gum tragacanth The powdered enamel should be evenly dusted onto the surface and edges of the metal by means of a sieve. The ground coat is usually supplied in a liquid form and can be thinned with water.Silversmithing and jewellery Non ferrous metals A coating of gum should be brushed on the surface the previously prepared clean surface of the metal with a camel hair brush.4 minutes at 840º . A second coat should applied if the ground coat can be seen after firing.850ºC. Cover coat This coat should be applied by pouring the liquid enamel on one side of the job until the ground coat can just be seen through the wet cover coat. with a 7mm (1/4") margin round the edge of the screw top and placing the lawn within the top. A sieve can be made from a screw top coffee jar or bay food jar. Ground coat First an even first coat should be applied by dipping and rubbing it onto the surface of the steel and leaving it to drain from one corner.com/for/hobbies/silversmithing. This is now ready for firing in the muffled furnace for 3 . http://www.ba-education.

html[7/15/2014 7:45:35 PM] .Silversmithing and jewellery Firing by torch or kiln Fusing of the enamel is best carried out in a kiln regulated by a temperature controlling simmer state switch. Supports made from nickel chrome or stainless steel may be required.com/for/hobbies/silversmithing. Firing in a kiln Pyrometers are recommended so that temperatures can be recorded for subsequent firings as enamels will vary in colour if fired at different temperatures.ba-education. http://www. As loss of heat occurs when the door is opened the kiln should be preheated to 850ºC. Enamelling temperature is 800ºC and should be reached in 1 1/4 hours. Stainless steel supports and fork A small hot plate kiln stood on heat proof pad is useful for small work.

Silver Soldiers. Firing should take place on 7mm (1/4") wire mesh.ba-education.Silversmithing and jewellery Small hot plate kiln stood on substitute asbestos pad Small work pieces up to 125mm (5") in diameter can be fired with a blowpipe. http://www. supported by a tripod fire bricks. Firing on a 7mm steel mesh supported by fire bricks The heat must be applied from underneath the work piece.html[7/15/2014 7:45:35 PM] . Finishing When the object has been fired and the back has not been enamelled. Normal oxides can be removed in a bath of 10% Sulphuric acid.com/for/hobbies/silversmithing. called panning metal approximately 300mm (12") square. it will require cleaning on the back. ceasing when the enamel becomes molten and smooth or burning out of the enamel at the edges will take place. first the enamel has to be protected with wax or it will become frosted. Silver Solders and Fluxes. The normal cleaning processes then are undertaken.

700 Strip/sheet/rod 5th joint/general Easy 705 . Cheaper commercial grades are available.778 Strip/sheet/rod 2nd joint/general Enamelling 730 . (fig 322) A lining of fire bricks should be used. A number of grades. known as Borax. Melting point Form Use Extra easy 680 .800 Strip/sheet/rod 1st joint/enamelling Fluxes. but butte suitable for soldering copper or gilding metal.Silversmithing and jewellery A lower melting point is obtained if the soldering alloy contains silver. A revolving hearth is to be preferred and is obtained free standing or bench mounted. A number of excellent efficient patent fluxes are available. Blowpipes and Hearth In order to perform the action of soldering successfully a hearth is required. having different melting points. with non-asbestos cubes round their periphery and a 300 mm. previously joints being protected with an application of jeweller's rouge and loam mixed with water. A number of blowpipes are available for use with natural gas. Grade. coal gas or bottle gas. Oliver articles should be soldered with a solder matching the colour of the standard silver and satisfying hallmark requirements. are available in order that several Joints may be incorporated on the same job. Oxidisation has to be prevented in hard soldering by the use of a flux. On no account should soft soldering be carried out on this hearth or damage to work will result. Non-ferrous metals being stained or holes burnt into them if lead solder ls left on the hearth. Borax cone for soldering.723 Strip/sheet/rod 4th joint/general Medium 720 . a creamy paste being formed when mixed with water in its powder form or rubbing It against a saucer or slate when obtained’s a cone. The most common is a colourless crystalline salt. the former two being mixed with oxygen supplied by compressed air or foot bellows.com/for/hobbies/silversmithing.html[7/15/2014 7:45:35 PM] . (12") square or 7 mm (1/4") iron wire mesh placed on top. http://www. often having a yellow colour.ba-education. with a motorised blower or double foot bellows supplying the air. Application should be by means of a clean brush.765 Strip/sheet/rod 3rd joint/general Hard 745 . found in California.

html[7/15/2014 7:45:35 PM] .ba-education. Mouth blowpipe for soldering. The blowpipe should be light to handle allowing easy careful control of the flame size with one hand. The joint should be a good grease and oxide free fit being firmly held in place by soft iron binding wire. Mouth blowpipes are used for fine work. cotter pins or stitches made with a graver. Soldering Technique. http://www.com/for/hobbies/silversmithing.Silversmithing and jewellery A very adequate supply of air supplied by a motorised blower or foot bellows should be used with natural gas. Binding with iron wire for soldering.

html[7/15/2014 7:45:35 PM] .ba-education. held in tongs melts on contact with the joint. The work should then be heated up slowly with the blowpipe held some distance from the work: keeping the flame moving over as wide an area as possible.com/for/hobbies/silversmithing. Heating Is continued until about dull red. http://www.Silversmithing and jewellery Sheet clips and cotter pins for sopport. The revolving hearth should be rotated slowly with one hand and the non-luminous part of the flame played on the work with the blowpipe held in the other hand. An adequate coating of flux paste should be applied to the joint area before heating commences. when the flux bubbles. and ls continued until about cherry red when a fluxed solder strip. If flux wetting is difficult farm the work with the blowpipe or add a 2% solution of “Teepol” to the paste. Stitching for spout (fig 224) Binding for soldering.

http://www.Silversmithing and jewellery Using flux and strip for soldering. Solder may also be applied by placing small pieces called paillons along or between the joint before heating commences. Placing paillions for soldering. The work after soldering should then be allowed to cool slowly or cracking and distortion will occur. Holding devices are then removed and the work cleaned by pickling in acid.ba-education.com/for/hobbies/silversmithing. The solder ls fed into the joint until it is slightly overfilled. Something different next time.html[7/15/2014 7:45:35 PM] . To return to an index click its button below or the hat at the top of the page. remembering that solder flows towards heat and should run along the joint.

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