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Thread: solder probs....

  1. #1
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    Default solder probs....

    hi all,
    trying to solder a silver setting into a silver ring shank, got extra easy silver solder wire, butane pencil torch, flux paste, the prob is when i clip solder off into little bits it takes ages to melt and turn into silver ball, when it eventually goes into a ball i pick it up and put it onto shank but it goes rock hard again and just sits there, even melted the setting earlier it was so hot help guys, beginner but rearing to go...help.

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by cheryle79 View Post
    hi all,
    trying to solder a silver setting into a silver ring shank, got extra easy silver solder wire, butane pencil torch, flux paste, the prob is when i clip solder off into little bits it takes ages to melt and turn into silver ball, when it eventually goes into a ball i pick it up and put it onto shank but it goes rock hard again and just sits there, even melted the setting earlier it was so hot help guys, beginner but rearing to go...help.

    I dont think you have enough heat Cheryl those pencil torches are very thin and as soon as you get enough heat they run out, you need to be able to heat the whole shank and the setting before you focus on the part to be soldered

  3. #3
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    Hi Cheryl

    What Emerald said is quite correct. The pencil torches are just not hot enough.

    Try using one of the hand held butane torches from Cookson.

    I picked one up for 20 and use it a craft fairs just to show people what you can do with the minimal amount of equipment.

    Also put some reflective soldering board or charcoal block behing to reflect the heat.

    Andrew
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  4. #4
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    You need to bring the ring shank upto temperature first and then the collett will follow and the solder will flow. At risk of sounding like a parrot, might I also mention that with easy and extra easy solder you will have a lot more joy if you use Easy Flux. The reason is that it melts and becomes active at a lower temperature. (see the recommendations in the Cook Book). I hope that in trying to help you we are not just nagging. Kind nregards, Dennis.
    Last edited by Dennis; 08-07-2010 at 10:31 PM.

  5. #5
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    I'm not sure why you melt the solder into a ball before you put it onto the join?

  6. #6
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    I think it's a combination of two things. Firstly, I agree completely about the heat. Secondly, I think it sounds as though you are trying to pick solder the piece, which I'm not convinced is the most appropriate style for this application. I think you might find it easier to use either paillons or paste solder for this type of joint. I'd agree with Dennis about using easy flux for easy solder as well!

  7. #7
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    Jul 2010
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    If you managed to melt the ring then I suppose the torch is hot enough to melt the solder.
    Here's a few suggestions,I presume you've fluxed it well and there is no left over beeswax (if you use it).
    Don't think your heating the solder to melt,but rather your getting the ring hot enough for the solder to run(melt onto it).It might be better in some cases to have the heat nowhere near where the solder is.The thickest part of the ring to get the heat up,plus there probably is a part that will heat up quicker than the other if it's a setting,dont try to heat the setting(that's where you get 'meltage') heat the thickest part and the setting will take care of it's self. The solder runs towards the heat,so use this if it's going the wrong way(a prodder/soldering probe as well),once the solder has run then pick the ring up or turn it around so you can see the other side of the join and heat it so you can see the solder run through to the other side,you will be tempted to think it's done,before it actually is and it will fall of in the acid or when you go to polish it.
    You probably could do with a bigger flame, you might just get the ring up to heat,take it off for a sec,the temp drops and you have to build it up again,you can get by with a gas torch and bottle gas like they do in B &Q's for plumbing for starters,I used one of them and a finer one for years(it's all heat).

    Any video by Giacomo on ganoksin would help seeing it done,that guy is a genius at jewellery and filming the process.
    Ahh yeah nearly forgot,one technique to use to control the tempreture,just before you feel the solder is going to melt you move the flame away and then slightly back again,like an on and off switch.
    Your dealing with a few things at once,but mainly it's fear,when i used to do repairs in a workshop I use to say to the girl next to me ah! I've got an itchy armpit job(sweating!!),it might be a big old diamond ring i had to put claws on,the fear was less than normal,cos it wasn't my business,so the worse could happen is I'd have to say sorry to the boss and take a bollocking. I don't get itchy any more.It takes a little while.
    Last edited by Shaun750; 09-07-2010 at 01:10 AM.

  8. #8
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    ok, my dad brought me round his blow torch, same thing again, solder not melting, shrivels up at end but doesnt come off the end of the wire,so im sure my little torch hot enough so last try im gonna buy extra easy flux as ive only got norm flux, and maybe try solder paste instead, annoyed as the wire is expensive and now its hardly useable, so difficult, i wont be beaten,

    did i choose wrong silver solder wire, i chose it cause it said extra easy, its not though...

    cheryl

  9. #9
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    Cheryl - this is going to sound like a cheeky question but are you using jewellers solder?
    I once went through all this with a student before finding out that the solder they were using came on a reel
    and was designed for soldering irons....
    (sorry of its the right solder just wanted to ask the "what if" question)

    On another note could you take a picture of the ring ready for soldering and put it in your album
    perhaps there will be something we can spot in a picture that we're missing in a description

    Nic x
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  10. #10
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    Cheryl, how are you using your solder?

    If it's strip solder, you need to flatten it out as much as possible (bash it with a hammer as hard as you like) then cut tiny paillons (literally a mm square). These need to be fluxed and placed on the fluxed joint.

    I only really use solder wire for stick soldering, where you feed the solder into a pre-heated joint and allow the heat from the metal to melt the solder.

    Apologies if I'm misunderstanding the problem!

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