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Thread: Argentium Silver...Tell us all you know!! Experiences good or bad!!

  1. #1
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    Default Argentium Silver...Tell us all you know!! Experiences good or bad!!

    I've just read a post by Peter (p.s.bond) where he mentions Argentium silver breaking when it is hot... I have read a lot of 'scare stories' about working with it and as a consequence have chickened out of using it...other than for ear wires which I use with my fine silver earrings.

    I did think it might work well with pmc too - but as yet haven't worked up the courage to experiment!! I'm sure a lot of people (not just forum members but many guests too) would like to get a bit more information about the dos and don'ts of Argentium silver...right from the front line so to speak... those of you who have had a go and survived to tell the tale!!

    I hope one or two of you have got some hints and tips or this thread is destined to divebomb....and I'm doomed to live in ignorance!!

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    I got me note book out ready to take notes miss
    Su' xx

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  3. #3
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    It has a learning curve is all. There's a few bits out there (notably from Cynthia Eid) on working with it - you just have to remember it isn't quite what we expect from sterling.

    The Argentium hard solder doesn't flow well; it doesn't conduct heat quite as readily as sterling; it is red-hard - so larger pieces need supporting; you can use it for keum-boo very readily...

    But the tarnish resistance is pretty effective from what I've seen.

    It's miles better than that horrible Brilliante that was around.

  4. #4
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    have to agree about the brillante, which was just horrid, horrid, horrid.

    I'm still to be convinced that argentium's worth the extra .

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    Quote Originally Posted by mizgeorge View Post
    have to agree about the brillante, which was just horrid, horrid, horrid.
    I blame the zinc. I spoke to one silversmith who was complaining about the amount of "dense white smoke" coming off the stuff while she was trying to TIG weld it. I think I went a bit pale - I know just how bad inhaling zinc fumes can be (which is why I will not forge galvanised steel, no matter how good the ventilation).

    I'm still to be convinced that argentium's worth the extra .
    Depends. For some stuff, the tag of "and you'll never/hardly ever have to polish it" is good; the lack of firestain for pieces you're annealing often is very appealing... There's plus points, but I think it needs to be used for specific gains, not as just a straight substitute.

  6. #6
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    Has anybody heard how it works with precious metal clay?...............anyone?............. (Looks around hopefully)..............

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    Well tomorrow, er today actually (omg I wish I could sleep), I'm going to have my first try with Argentium. Cynthia Eid has demo'd it at the class I'm doing in Birmingham and we each have a couple of pieces to try out. It looks relatively easy but I'll let you know. The reason I can't sleep is that I keep going over designs in my head and also cos it's so darn hot in my hotel room.

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    still very jealous of your course Carole

  9. #9
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    I wasn't aware that you had to use a different solder with Argentium?

    So far I have only used it for headpins and S links that I make with balled ends - it is fantastic for that as the balls do not 'pit' like they do with sterling.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ominicci View Post
    I wasn't aware that you had to use a different solder with Argentium?
    You don't - but the "proper" solder has the same tarnish resistance as the rest of the metal. There's also some melting point differences - detailed in the tech literature on it.

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