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2nd and 3rd fusings on an argentium piece


#1

I’m designing an Argentium piece. It will require 2, possibly 3
fusing steps. Is there a danger that the first fused seams will open
during the the subsequent steps? Is there something I can use to
protect those seams, equivalent to yellow ochre when soldering
conventional sterling silver? And while I am at it: what is the rule
of thumb regarding when one should solder Argentium instead of fusing
it?


#2

Hello Marie,

Once the joint is completely fused, it is all the same metal. There
is no need to protect the joint during subsequent fusings. Play
around with some scraps and you will find that you can fuse multiple
times.

The concern in fusing is that the joint might NOT be properly fused

  • check it under magnification. If fusing is incomplete, the joint
    will be weak and you need to re-fuse. That might mean cutting the
    joint and filing the edges to achieve a complete fit all along the
    joint.

Re when to solder and when to fuse: I await input from Cynthia Eid
and others. Personally, I would solder when the heat necessary for
fusing might result in metal deforming. That decision comes with
experience.

Judy in Kansas, where the temps are nearing 60 and the sun is
shining. Timeto haul compost for the garden


#3

Hi, Judy said it well:

Once the joint is completely fused, it is all the same metal. There
is no need to protect the joint during subsequent fusings.

I also agree with Judy about practicing. Practice fusing multiple
times on some scraps before you start working on something larger
that you care about.

Finally, I continue to agree with Judy: solder any time fusing feels
too dangerous. Where that line is varies from person to person,
depending on their skill and confidence. There is no reason that you
ever HAVE TO fuse----it is simply a nice option with Argentium
Silver, to have a really clean joint, with no cleanup. For me, I
generally fuse early in a project. Then, towards the end, when I have
a lot of time and material invested, I am more likely to “play it
safe” and solder rather than fuse.

Have fun!

Best wishes from what has, surprisingly, become “Snow
Country”—I’ve been snowshoeing nearly every day for the past
couple weeks!

Cynthia Eid
Cynthiaeid.com


#4

Hi all I have done fusings in Argentium quite successfully for
pendants.

I think the most is four fusings using off cuts from earrings I have
cut out.

There is a picture on my facebook page Richard Hopkins look for the
Argentium flying unicorn as there are a lot of Richard Hopkins on
facebook.

However I have not been able to fuse ring bands as when I round them
up with a leather mallet the fusing opens. I think I need to use a
different torch. So I solder ring bands in Argentium.

Not a problem. Argentium is just the best silver alloy to work no
matter what I do there is no firescale.

all the best
Richard


#5

The one danger with Argentium, or any metal that will fuse to
itself, is that because the fused joint is actually now the same as
the two pieces which were fused, there is no way to “unfuse” that
joint if you wanted to, such as you could with a soldered joint.
You’d have to saw it apart instead. But withcarefully planned
joints, that shouldn’t be an issue.

Argentium is a lovely metal to use. I’m sad that my supplier stopped
stocking it, or I would still be using it.

Helen
UK

(Who recently successfully completed a nightmare gold ring rebuild
for a friend, when everyone said “walk away!”. Happy to report that
my friend was “ecstatic!!!” when I gave it back to her, and she said
the ring looks better than it did when new. Glad it’s done though;
there were a few disasters along the way, which I managed to sort
using common sense).