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Thread: Soldering a heavy sterling silver ring

  1. #11
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
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    Do you mean this flux? http://www.cooksongold.com/Jewellery...rcode-997-6418
    I use it for both silver and gold and all types of solders (although on silver 99% I use hard), it works well.
    Hard silver solder from Cookson flows well even on dirty surfaces, but I had problems with medium from Cookson, don't know why. Scratching the solder strip with file helped. But still I strongly prefer hard.
    I have handheld butane torch only (max flame) and I don't have problem to heat rings in range 7-10g. I don't do heavier, because I find anything above 1.5mm thickness highly uncomfortable. I think yours could be approx. 10-13g? It should be doable. I made also some bracelets in 20g range with butane torch, but I used gas cooker in kitchen as small help
    I would think you are not getting it hot enough. Or the ultrasonic. Hard to tell. Can you test the solder and your process on something less heavy?

  2. #12
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
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    Cardiff
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    I was looking at the wrong stuff in that case. I only use a max flame and make very heavy rings with that. Weirdly I only started using my medium solder this week as I was low on hard. It is definitely the most temperamental, I wonder why?

  3. #13
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
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    Central London
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    7,487

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    Quote Originally Posted by LydiaNiz View Post
    It is definitely the most temperamental, I wonder why?
    On a solder farm it is fed on oats.

  4. #14
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    Feb 2011
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    I don't know when medium solder started to be a brat. I was taught to work through the grades but at that time I was using borax, I don't remember having problems with medium until I started using auflux.

  5. #15
    Join Date
    May 2012
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    373

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    It's odd that most are having problems with med solder, that's the main one I turn to & it's from cooksons stock. How strange. I go through the usual process of hammering the solder strip flat, snipping wee bits off & away I go. It's my go to solder for brass & copper too Maybe I've just been really lucky with the batch
    Sian Williamson

  6. #16
    Join Date
    May 2012
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    Quote Originally Posted by LydiaNiz View Post
    I was looking at the wrong stuff in that case. I only use a max flame and make very heavy rings with that. Weirdly I only started using my medium solder this week as I was low on hard. It is definitely the most temperamental, I wonder why?
    That's not the flux I saw either, I saw the one that was used for brazing too
    Sian Williamson

  7. #17
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
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    Scotland
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    2,459

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    Quote Originally Posted by Keia View Post
    It's odd that most are having problems with med solder, that's the main one I turn to & it's from cooksons stock. How strange. I go through the usual process of hammering the solder strip flat, snipping wee bits off & away I go. It's my go to solder for brass & copper too Maybe I've just been really lucky with the batch
    I haven't used it since everyone said it was useless, maybe I should just go back to what I know it would be useful instead of going from hard to easy

  8. #18
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
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    Exeter, Devon
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    Quote Originally Posted by RuthW View Post
    Thank you all for your input.
    I don't think that I've got my solder mixed up with silver strip but fair point to make and also the point about medium solder being particularly troublesome.
    I will however get some either borax or Auflux as you suggest and my pickling solution may well be contaminated so I will make fresh. Is there a way to tell if you need to renew your pickling solution? And also as I was cleaning the each before each attempt with wire wool and then putting it in an ultrasonic cleaner wouldn't that remove any contamination from the flux?
    I'm new to jewellery making but am from an engineering background and trying to teach myself silversmithing but sometimes I find soldering things easy to do and other times, like this one, I just can't make it happen. I will continue trying your suggestions and see how I get on.
    Thanks to you all.
    Another thing you may not have been told is to get your solder thin by bashing it with a hammer before cutting into pallions. The thinner solder flows better, also when you have filed the ends to get grease etc off, dont touch them with your fingers as your skin has grease in it and will contaminate the metal.

  9. #19
    Join Date
    Feb 2016
    Location
    Ashbourne, Derbyshire
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    This is all really useful info that you're putting up and I will hopefully have more success when my new flux arrives and I will try hammering my solder as well. The ring is for a thumb ring for my husband so I'm hoping it thickness won't be an issue like it would be for a finger ring.

  10. #20
    Join Date
    Sep 2014
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    How thick a ring is comfortable is very much an individual thing but all of mine are at least 2mm thick and 4mm wide with some as much as 2.5mm by 10mm as they have to incorporate the braid.
    I certainly wouldn't think you will have problems with a thumb ring for a man being thicker.
    Last edited by enigma; 26-02-2016 at 12:47 AM.

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