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Thread: Finishing stamped metal blank

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  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2014
    Posts
    5

    Default Finishing stamped metal blank

    Hi,
    Its my first post, I'm fairly new to jewellery making and I love learning from online tutorials and formus. One thing I want to ask is about is what is the best way to finish a sterling silver blank after I have stamped and oxidised it. I am using heart shaped blanks of 0.8mm thickness, and usually only stamping one letter on the blank. I use ultra polish pads to remove unwanted patina, then I use a hole punch to attach a jump ring. I find that the letter stamped on the blank can be seen slightly on the reverse side. Is this a common thing, is my blank too thin? Do I need to sand the blank ? I'm afraid of scratching it but want it to be nice and polished looking. I don't yet have alot of equipment, I'm getting what I need as I go along, would sand paper suffice?I also attach a bead to the blank, does this require me to coat the blank with something to protect it? Im learning lots of new skills but am finding this a bit confusing.
    Thanks in advance,
    Maggie

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2013
    Posts
    199

    Default

    The quickest and easiest way will be getting thicker blanks, to be honest, for it not to show on the other side (and giving a decent stamp) I would imagine that you would be looking at, at least 1.2mm maybe a bit more. I need to give a bit of a sand and polish over my makers stamp, if I give it a decent thwack, if I use 1mm thick sheet.

    The other way is sanding and then polishing after stamping, but will be more time consuming and need a bit more equipment than just getting thicker sheet (but thicker sheet will of course be more expensive)

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Location
    Cornwall
    Posts
    3,172

    Default

    I think a lot depends on how much you're selling your blanks for. If you're expecting top dollar, they should be perfect in every way and you should use thicker silver. If you're only charging a small amount, then people should expect to get what they pay for and shouldn't mind too much if the imprint shows a bit on the back.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    Scotland
    Posts
    2,987

    Default

    Hi Maggie,
    You might also be getting an indent on the back if you are stamping on a soft surface such as wood instead of a base plate or flat metal surface. I agree that it is probably a bit thin but I'm not sure you can buy already cut metal blanks at the desired thickness. If you are oxidising them the shine will be different from unoxidised silver so you could give a very fine sand, oxidise, polish it up again with a cloth and use the polishing pads on the areas you want to highlight if that makes sense. I suggest maybe sanding one , oxidising and then trying the different ways of polishing it up, you can always remove the oxidisation and start again if you don't get the effect you want. It's all a bit of trial and error, we all do it even with experience

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Posts
    1,744

    Default

    0.8 is too thin. I get stuff coming through the other side of my plectrums which are 1mm. The way I deal with it is to file the back with a large flat file and then progressively fine sand paper. You can buy metal files fairly cheaply now, though I think it's worth going for better quality if you can afford it.

    I'm not sure how you would attach a bead to the blank. Do you mean a metal bead or a dangle?

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2014
    Posts
    5

    Default

    Sorry, I meant I attach a bead to the jump ring. Its a Swarovski Pearl. Might it scratch the blank over time?

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2014
    Posts
    5

    Default

    Looks like I need thicker blanks for a start. I do want to sell them reasonably priced but the imprint really bothers me.I wasn't prepared to invest in too much equipment as I am just starting out but at least I know where most of the problem lies, Ill get back to the drawing board. Thanks for all the advice!

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