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Hints & Tips

Silversmithing Tips

  1. When you use fine steel wool on a piece you are making, be very sure to rinse the silver thoroughly in water before continuing the next step of soldering. Even the heat of the torch will not eliminate the steel wool dust that accumulates on the piece. If you drop it into the pickle, you will get a fine case of copper plating, entirely coating the piece. (Via Rock Bag and Gem Time 6/99 and Strata Gam 2/2002)
  2. Don't try to heat solder too fast.
  3. Don't try to hard solder any item that has traces of lead solder on the metal. It will oxidize and eat holes in the metal.
  4. Don't leave inflammable chemicals around in open containers.
  5. Don't hand your torch near inflammable materials.
  6. Don't solder platinum or other high melting metals without wearing proper protection glasses.
  7. Don't forget the proper way to mix acid and water.
  8. Don't ever use oil on any oxygen equipment. Oxygen and oil may combine and cause a terrific explosion.
  9. Don't leave acid bottles open - the fumes will rust your tools.
  10. Don't think that because a stone is hard, it won't break easily. Use care in setting stones to avoid uneven pressure along the edges.
  11. Don't try to size a ring without removing the stone.
  12. Don't mix lead with your gold and silver scrap.
  13. Don't undertake a job for someone else that is beyond your knowledge.
  14. Don't forget that most of the liquids used are POISONOUS!

Via FGMS, via Gem Time, via Golden Spike News, via Strata Gem