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Thread: Matt finish/firescale

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2020
    Posts
    7

    Default Matt finish/firescale

    Hi all,
    I've started making jewellery a year ago (it's my hobby and I'm self taught). I have problems with firescale. I've made a couple of earrings (serling silver) and in all of them you can see grey stains. I read the forum and initially I tried to fix them by torch-put them in pickling (I repeated the process 6 times!) and polish them again. It didn't work
    I've bought already denaturated alcohol and powdered boric acid for the things that I will make in the future.
    Now I'm thinking to do matt finish instead of mirror finish to hide the fire stains.
    Could you please explain how to do it? Do I have to use sand paper and that's it?
    Thank you in advance!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Central London
    Posts
    7,808

    Default

    A matte finish will hide firescale sufficiently to pass and can be achieved with many abrasives listed below. The problem is only that any raised addition to the design will stop the tool, or pad getting to all of the surface. If you are getting firescale on small pieces, it is better to improve your soldering technique, by using a less fierce flame (closing the air hole sightly), shortening the soldering time, or even using easier solder. Putting on an ear post should only take 30-40 seconds.

    Matting devices are mostly used in one direction only. The effect varies from slight to coarse:
    A wet and soapy jewellers brass brush
    Abrasive pads, or blocks from a paint shop
    Sponge backed nail buffers and emery boards, cut to shape, from a chemist.
    Rotary tools, such as: Matting wheels, Scotchbrite wheels, Yellow radial disks.
    Ceramic media in a tumbler. Dennis.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2020
    Posts
    7

    Default

    Thank you Dennis. This is really helpful. I use hard solder for ear posts and it takes a lot of time to put it on the earring. It's really frustrating. Hopefully the denaturated alcohol with the powdered boric acid will solve my problem!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    Scotland
    Posts
    2,693

    Default

    A matt finish as I have found will only temporarily hide firestain. As the silver starts to get dirty or tarnish you’ll see the patches and it’ll be quite obvious to the wearer when she’s looking in the mirror. If possible use the grades of paper and polish to get rid of it

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2020
    Posts
    7

    Default

    Thanks for your reply!

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