Results 1 to 10 of 10

Thread: Enamelling reds

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2023
    Posts
    4

    Question Enamelling reds

    Hello
    I'm struggling to get transparent reds to fire red. They are a orange brown. I have tried playing around with the temperature, no joy. I tried firing on top of Keum boo gold and clear flux, no joy. I have ordered C1 gold flux which is meant to help. I'm using fine silver that has been cleaned with nitric acid before
    hand. Has anyone got any tips?
    I contacted vissum signum, who said to stick to the firing temperature and go in short and fast. Still didn't seem to work.
    Has anyone any experience enamelling plique a jour on 18ct gold? Any tips please?
    Any help appreciated. Orange and yellows behaving, as are opaque reds, just not the translucents or transparents reds.
    Sarah
    Last edited by Bohemianchick23; 05-09-2023 at 04:53 PM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2014
    Location
    South Australia
    Posts
    1,839

    Default

    I have done a little Plique-a-jour, I have never experienced the problem you have, with this technique everything has to right not very forgiving, are you using fresh Enamel, are you sifting to achieve consistent size of grain, are you washing before use. I use Thomsons Enamel

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2023
    Posts
    4

    Default

    I was trying just to test fire the reds on fine silver squares that had been cleaned in 70% nitric acid.
    I sieved the reds onto the silver.
    I've not tried the plique a jour yet. I'm hoping to use yellows, oranges and reds in the circles in the earrings below
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails IMG-20230903-WA0002.jpg  

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2023
    Posts
    4

    Default

    Is there a Thompson red that you recommend that is either translucent or transparent? And have you ever used plique a jour on 18ct gold?

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2014
    Location
    South Australia
    Posts
    1,839

    Default

    The one I have used is 2880 Woodrow red in 80 mesh, I have only used it on Silver although it should be suitable for Gold and other metals.
    Have a look here https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CAVB...elryDepartment
    Last edited by china; 06-09-2023 at 01:53 PM.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2019
    Location
    Oxfordshire
    Posts
    230

    Default

    Reds are notoriously difficult, I've used red just a couple of times and I used Schauer mid ruby. It came out pink initially but darkened after a few firings, I wet pack. For the temperature range of the enamel it was at the top of the range so when enamelling with other colours, the other colours could easily become muddy from being a little too hot. I don't have the luxury of a kiln so I torch fire. Here is a sheet for the schauer range, the firing temperatures and the base materials that they are compatible with.

    https://www.milton-bridge.co.uk/imag...hart-sheet.pdf

    Fine silver does not need the nitric acid step that you have described. This is only required for silver that is not 999. eg.sterling and britania. The nitric acid is used to remove any copper near the surface of the metal so that it will not react with the enamel. You can use the depletion gilding technique to get a thin layer of pure silver on the surface of the object you are wanting to enamel. Both of these processes are described in Phil Barnes' book Engraving and Enamelling: The art of champleve.

    https://www.amazon.co.uk/Engraving-E...df_1785005456/

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Sep 2023
    Posts
    4

    Default

    Hello Alistair
    Thank you so much for taking the time to reply. I have the Phil Barnes book and I'm working through it. Will have a look at the MB colours and temperature ranges. I really appreciate you sending me this it's really helpful. Will conquer the reds yet. It says in Phil's book he always torched fired the reds first during with a gas bellow torch and then subsequent firings in a kiln. May try that. Never torched fired though, any tips please?
    Many thanks
    Sarah

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2019
    Location
    Oxfordshire
    Posts
    230

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Bohemianchick23 View Post
    Hello Alistair
    Thank you so much for taking the time to reply. I have the Phil Barnes book and I'm working through it. Will have a look at the MB colours and temperature ranges.
    Sarah
    The link to the pdf was for the Schauer range of enamels. These are different to the Milton Bridge range. Milton Bridge manufacture the Schauer range. I chose this range because the fusing temperatures were lower than the MB and Thompson ranges. The schauer range does not stipulate that it is lead free so I suspect that it has lead in it and I think that this reduces the firing temperature. I think I have read somewhere that they are compatible with the MB ranges. I've read the safety data sheet for the Leaded enamels and for the unleaded enamels and the safety precautions seem to be the same so I'm not sure what the fuss about leaded enamels is all about if standard safety precautions are taken, eg. wear a mask when sifting, have good ventilation or extraction when firing etc...

    The reason I wanted the lower temperature is that I could not resolve the fact that some enamellers use hard silver solder on enamelled objects. If the firing temperature of the enamel is above the solder temperature why doesn't is fall apart? What enamels are they using? I can't answer those questions and I've not seen it written down anywhere, if anyone can answer this I've be very happy.

    Tips for torch firing. Heat on the underside of the object, keep, the flame moving. I've used a bullfinch torch and a smith's little torch, I prefer the smith's little torch. I have only enamelled small items. You can always remove the heat quickly and return it when you feel more comfortable. Get used to the colour of the metal and you won't melt it (practice on some scrap first). Once the enamel has gone past the "sugar" stage you will need to remove the heat for short periods so you don't over heat the item. You control the temperature by heating and then removing the heat when its getting too hot. Keep the flame moving, have I said that already ;-). Don't apply heat to the surface of the enamel, some are more sensitive than others but you can muddy the colour, it seems to turn brown, however all is not lost as you can add a little more enamel and heat from below and it clears again.
    Last edited by alastairduncan; 08-09-2023 at 04:31 PM. Reason: typo

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    The Netherlands
    Posts
    429

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by alastairduncan View Post

    The reason I wanted the lower temperature is that I could not resolve the fact that some enamellers use hard silver solder on enamelled objects. If the firing temperature of the enamel is above the solder temperature why doesn't is fall apart? What enamels are they using? I can't answer those questions and I've not seen it written down anywhere, if anyone can answer this I've be very happy.

    .
    Alastair, enamellers solder has a higher melting temperature than hard solder.
    Poor old Les

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Aug 2019
    Location
    Oxfordshire
    Posts
    230

    Default

    Hi Les,

    I've used enamelling silver solder for larger items such as coffee pots etc. It's not a very nice solder as it doesn't flow that well. Temperature ranges for enamels such as Thompson and Milton are still higher than that of the enamelling solder. It also contains zinc which can react with some enamels. It's not one that Phil Barnes recommended in his book. I think that if the enamelled item is constructed so that it stays in one piece when the solder is molten then enamelling may be possible but I've not tried that yet.

Tags for this Thread

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •