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Thread: Solder won't flow - soldering bangle join

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
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    Default Solder won't flow - soldering bangle join

    Hi,

    Ive searched the other threads on this forum but I can't seem to find the answer for a bangle.

    I have successfully soldered rings closed using solder paste and I have no problems with this. I have had to evenly heat the ring before concentrate on the join and solder flows great. I have also fused fine silver, all good easy even!

    But when it comes to soldering the join for my bangle, the solder just doesn't seem to flow at all. Do I need to evenly heat the entire bangle just as I do with the ring first? I've tried that and also tried using flux and silver solder but its just not working. I've found a couple of vids on Youtube and tried their techniques like clamping the solder with the two ends of the bangle, fluxing and then heating but the darn thing just wont flow for me.

    Here are the videos I've watched:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lnJTsvtGyoU
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v2oMEFmxaKQ

    Can anyone help me with this? I'm obviously doing something wrong but I don't know what it is

  2. #2
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    Default

    What torch are you using?

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
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    Is the solder melting but not flowing through the joint? - uneven heating or not enough heat or the joint is not good enough - gaps.
    Trying cleaning the metal you want to join. One good way to get a tight fit between the two parts is to squeeze them closed then saw through the gap which takes off a sliver but makes for a good tight fit.
    Slosh the flux around and flux the solder.
    make sure it all gets hot enough, if the solder isn't melting at all you simply are not getting enough heat.
    Those are a few things to try.
    Author: Pearls A Practical Guide
    www.pearlsapractical.guide
    www.Pearlescence.co.uk

  4. #4
    Join Date
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    Soldering is still my weak point and I am still learning. I've had this problem a lot on past projects. I discovered medium silver solder was very difficult to work with and now only use either easy or hard. I've worked on pieces that were too large and my hand torch just wasn't powerful enough to heat them properly no matter how long I held the heat on them. (I've ruined many pieces this way)

    I also discovered using my "3rd hand" seems to draw a lot of heat away from the piece it's holding so I no longer use that as (all I have is a little handheld Proxxon torch.) Other times I've had issues if the join wasn't clean enough and/or wasn't sitting tightly together. I often use some lovely titanium clamps to hold things now, they work great and don't seem to draw heat away like the 3rd hand did. I've also learned the solder should begin to flow fairly quickly, in the beginning I was holding the flame on pieces for 20+ minutes waiting for solder to flow. Now if it doesn't happen in a few minutes or so that something is wrong and it's best to stop.
    Last edited by Sandra; 01-05-2014 at 07:53 AM.

  5. #5
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    I'd echo Peter's question - it sounds like you don't have enough heat.

  6. #6
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    England
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    Good soldering is all about clean surfaces, clean flux, clean solder and clean joins. If you are using silver solder scrape all surfaces and remove any dirty areas, I never use solder paste as I like to see the solder. Then as others have suggested the heat is important, larger pieces are better heated with a soft larger flame, the object is to heat the metal area around the solder joint, up to the flowing temperature of the solder. I am not sure of your experience, but many learners think that you just heat the solder until it flows, which is wrong.
    Another tip is that the solder will flow towards the heat, so after you have heated the whole piece up to near solder running temperature, play the flame on the opposite side of the joint to where the solder sits and the solder will run through the joint, rather than just around it.
    For silver soldering I only use Hard and Easy silver solders, with a Borax cone, borax dish and water as my flux, I flux the interior of the joint, then close it, heat it gently, cut the solder into tiny pieces, pick a piece of solder up with tweezers and dip it into the borax dish, wetting the solder piece with milky white flux, and then it will stick to the heated solder joint before heating the piece to solder flow temperature. Sorry if this is to much info.

    James
    Last edited by Goldsmith; 01-05-2014 at 08:24 AM.

  7. #7
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    Dec 2012
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    Thanks for your advice everyone!

    I think you were right it was that I did'nt have enough heat. I'm using a charcoal block and I followed the insturctions on this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u9fRhsNWiwc but obviously his torch is a lot stronger than mine and his solder flowed a lot quicker and I thought thats how long mine would take to flow. I'm just using a handheld blow torch so I just had to leave the heat there for a lot longer and it started to bubble and flowed through the joins and the bangle closed up! Ahhhh, feels so good to have worked this out!

    Thank you to everyone for your help!

  8. #8
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    Get used to looking hard at the metal, it will tell you how hot it is. Don't think in terms of time it takes. It will take as long as it takes.
    Author: Pearls A Practical Guide
    www.pearlsapractical.guide
    www.Pearlescence.co.uk

  9. #9
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    Ealing, United Kingdom, United Kingdom
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    Hi everyone!

    I too have been having trouble getting my solder to flow...

    I am looking to solder a mens ring which is 3mm depth and 10mm wide.

    I have been very careful to clean the join properly, i also cleaned the solder (hard) before i cut into pallions.

    I used 'Auroflux' on the solder snippets and the join.

    I heated the ring and not the solder.

    I heated the ring until it was glowing bright red...it was red for quite some time....but that solder just didnt do a thing.

    After letting it cool down again, it seems that my solder pillions have simply welded themselves to the ring...never melted...just stuck (now filing away to get them off).

    I use the nimrod T-75 but cant see it being a heat problem as I had it set to let plenty of air in and that ring was glowing bright red.

    This is my third attempt. The first time had the same outcome as this. The second attempt, the pallions started to melt but just into blobs on the surface.

    I took some of the solder to one side to see if it melts on its own and it does....Im flummoxed!

  10. #10
    Join Date
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    I would try the piercing through the join trick and then try again.

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