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Thread: My Life As A β Jeweller.

  1. #1
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    Default My Life As A β Jeweller.

    I am an amateur jewellery maker, so I don’t sell to the rich and famous, or have a Royal Warrant. I just give it away to family and friends.

    I don’t expect to receive a knighthood, or have a statue erected on Clerkenwell green.

    But there is one thing I have discovered that you won’t find in textbooks, or taught at uni. In fact, when I have mentioned it here it has never raised a comment. It is a soldering trick.

    If I have a lightweight, or wire construction, I find that by raising the overall temperature with a large but very soft flame, until the piece just threatens to glow in subdued light and hold it, I can use my minitorch selectively, to add more solder to a joint, or safely add collets one by one, without disturbing the rest.

    No doubt this idea will die with me and be rediscovered some fifty year hence by someone who will claim it as their own. Good luck to them.
    Sorry about my finger in the example below. Dennis
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails 2ro Two Rings One Finger.jpg   3e 1 Three Pairs of Earrings.jpg   clp 2 The Silver Pendant sh.jpg   ss1 Solar System Necklace.jpg  
    Last edited by Dennis; 11-04-2020 at 10:48 AM.

  2. #2
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    I’m not sure I’ve seen that ring before Dennis, it’s wonderful. I always admire your intricate work. I no longer seem able to do fiddly and I find it hard enough to hold my old sievert let alone hold another one. Maybe this is the time to play with delicate and use that which will forever be called the Dennis method, although my sievert can’t be turned down to bushy. I had to replace my gas tank recently and gosh is it hot compared to the dregs of the last one:/

  3. #3
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    I've used a similar technique but for large objects and always had someone else directing the second torch so I could concentrate on what I had to do. Sometimes I was on the second torch on someone else's work. This was mainly due to the heat output of one torch not being enough.

    I'm not sure I would like to be in control of 2 torches as I find one is sometimes more than enough but can appreciate the principal you are describing.

    I like your examples Dennis.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by alastairduncan View Post
    I've used a similar technique but for large objects and always had someone else directing the second torch so I could concentrate on what I had to do. Sometimes I was on the second torch on someone else's work. This was mainly due to the heat output of one torch not being enough.

    I'm not sure I would like to be in control of 2 torches as I find one is sometimes more than enough but can appreciate the principal you are describing.

    I like your examples Dennis.
    I think I already hold my breath in concentration holding one torch, I’d be a danger to myself and the house as 2 gun Tex. Not sure I’d trust my OH to be in charge of the other one although he has been torch firing enamels a lot more this past few weeks so maybe he knows more than I think.
    Sorry Dennis I’ve completely misappropriated your original post. It’s cabin fever

  5. #5
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    Thank you both for your welcome comments. You might just consider Caroline, Changing to an EZ torch, which is similar to the Sievert, but lighter in weight and has an adjustable air hole. Dennis.
    Last edited by Dennis; 11-04-2020 at 09:00 PM.

  6. #6
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    I probably should Dennis. I’ve had this torch for 40 years and it’s what we used at College. I’m sure new sieverts are even lighter than this old thing!

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dennis View Post
    I am an amateur jewellery maker, so I don’t sell to the rich and famous, or have a Royal Warrant. I just give it away to family and friends.

    I don’t expect to receive a knighthood, or have a statue erected on Clerkenwell green.

    But there is one thing I have discovered that you won’t find in textbooks, or taught at uni. In fact, when I have mentioned it here it has never raised a comment. It is a soldering trick.

    If I have a lightweight, or wire construction, I find that by raising the overall temperature with a large but very soft flame, until the piece just threatens to glow in subdued light and hold it, I can use my minitorch selectively, to add more solder to a joint, or safely add collets one by one, without disturbing the rest.

    No doubt this idea will die with me and be rediscovered some fifty year hence by someone who will claim it as their own. Good luck to them.
    Sorry about my finger in the example below. Dennis
    Beautiful pieces Dennis.
    I can’t quite envisage how you do this. One hand for the soft flame torch, the other for the micro......so how do you apply the solder? I imagine you bring the heat up to the “glow” with the bushy flame then exchange for the micro. Do you have to work fairly quickly before the “body” of the piece cools down too much? I am intrigued by this technique.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by CJ57 View Post
    I probably should Dennis. I’ve had this torch for 40 years and it’s what we used at College. I’m sure new sieverts are even lighter than this old thing!
    I doubt it Caroline, I have used Sieverts in college, and 'though I'm not that bothered about weight, you have to keep them moving and distance them from your work to avoid overheating it. Dennis

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ruedeleglise View Post
    Beautiful pieces Dennis.
    I can’t quite envisage how you do this.
    Thank you for your kind comments. I often fix the work, so that it can't move apart, sometimes with clamps and sometimes with ordinary pins in a vermiculite board.
    Then I apply the flux and pallions and dry it very gently. Once dry, I apply a large torch with the smallest possible bushy flame in my left hand and keep it going while I pick out areas to solder with the mini torch in my right hand, always in subdued light.
    This shooting from the hip does it for me. Dennis.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dennis View Post
    I doubt it Caroline, I have used Sieverts in college, and 'though I'm not that bothered about weight, you have to keep them moving and distance them from your work to avoid overheating it. Dennis
    Yes movement has always been key and a friend made me a big rotating hearth when I left college so that’s both hands used up if I’m doing a bit bit of soldering. I think I’ve only ever melted one thing or a bit of it, in fact it’s the only piece of reticulation I’ve ever successfully achieved so I left it as a feature! I suppose that isn’t bad in all this time

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