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Thread: Setting stones and random thoughts

  1. #11
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    Apr 2015
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    While I'm scoffing my sandwiches, a couple questions, if I may?

    How do you polish metals? I'm guessing it's more complicated than a spot of Brasso on a rag? I'm thinking copper, brass and nickel-silver. I'm also guessing I'll need some sort of machine to do it – maybe one of those Minicraft tools with a buffer?

    Also, if I wanted to enamel some parts of my 'jewellery' could I used cold enamel – is it as durable as fired enamel?

    I'm probably going to have quite a few newbie questions over the next few weeks, so please bare with me!

    Thanks, Steve

  2. #12
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    full answers to these questions would be huge, Steve.

    Firstly, how large are the pieces you wish to polish and what level of finish are you aiming for? Is it those bugs you have been showing?

    Cold enamels are just resins and true enamels are glass. There is obviously a difference in durability, but also in intensity of colour. Dennis

  3. #13
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    Apr 2015
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    Hello Dennis, thanks as always.

    While I'm working on some quite difficult 3D shapes for my beetle, I've been thinking of something much simpler and flat. I absolutely love the moth pendant by Gaillard:
    Click image for larger version. 

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    I'd like to update it and make it mine, rather than a straight copy, so I'm thinking of using different metals (brass and copper) for the colour variations of the wings, secured to a nickel-silver frame. Thickness of the metals will be quite thin, but I'd like them very polished so they play with as much light as the gemstones I'll be setting in them.

    As well as gemstones and the polished surfaces, I'd like to fill some designed holes or dips with enamel. I have no idea how I would achieve that. I would make these in the nickel-silver part so the yellow metals don't affect the enamel colour.

    Hopefully this week I'll be able to finish a drawing and pinpoint the areas to highlight.

    Steve

  4. #14
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    Hi Steve,
    If you want a high polish, you are likely to find a bench polisher your best bet. Probably with 6" mops, the polish will depend on the metal you are using it on and to doe degree personal preference.

    In terms of enamel, cold enamels have no where near the durability or perceived value of fired (glass enamels).

    Just as an aside, are you making jewellery pieces which will be sold within the EU?.....just wondering about nickel directives?? Maybe worth checking out!!

    Jill

  5. #15
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    Well Steve,
    It does seem as if you are going to take this up long term, so the first thing is to settle on some sort of motor. In my view, those Dremel and similar ones are a total waste of money, as they dont have enough speed control and are clumsy to hold and die quite quickly.

    The low cost option is a micromotor from China, which ends up costing you about 100 when imported.http://www.amazon.co.uk/Jewelry-Micr...rds=micromotor

    An alternative is a pendant motor, such as the Foredom. http://www.suttontools.co.uk/power-t...plete-kit.html

    Once you have a motor, all the polishing you need for your items would be a set of radial brushes- no compound, no mess. But you would need to keep a set for each metal. http://www.cooksongold.com/category_...y=Radial+disks.

    I have always avoided enameling for fear that once started it would consume my life. Dennis.

  6. #16
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    Thanks both, there's quite a lot to think about there.

    I had no idea nickel had a directive! I'll check that out, thanks Jill.

    I was thinking more of polishing the finished product once complete. I plan to use several metals together, so would I have to polish each type separately? That would be quite tricky.

    Steve

  7. #17
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    I'm not that sure Steve, but if it transfers hard to shift residues between metals, you'd have to use mops and brushes with Menzerna say, which is relatively clean.

    I havent tried a number of base metals together like that so unfortunately we all have to do tests for new pieces. However your problems would go away if you used sterling silver, for very little extra cost.

  8. #18
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    Ive polished brass, copper and silver together using Lux silver/gold products and that works out ok.
    Also silver and gold together.
    As well as the cold enamels ( which are really resin) there is also a range that can be heated in a normal oven- I haven't used them but Lydia has a video on cooksons showing how they work if I remember right.

  9. #19
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    I've polished silver & gold and silver & bronze and silver & copper together with tripoli/rouge and the luxi polishes and silver and gold together with menzerna....all with no problem.

    Actually, I tend to keep mops to certain polishes rather than certain metals......not sure what others do??

  10. #20
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    I still have that foredom multispeed with a cowl still available

    I tend to keep my mops to certain polishes too Jill. I use GetiPol for all my finishes and pre-polish with Luxor

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