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Annealed sterling silver findings


#1

I would greatly appreciate comments and advise regarding the
heat softening and subsequent easy bending of both earring posts
and cufflink findings.

Sterling silver earring posts readily bend after being
acetylene/air, easy soldered onto the back of the earring unless
stiffened. Burnishing to harden is difficult as is using my
flexshaft with a small rouged buffing wheel. Ought to be a
better way! Please…

The vertical twin silver posts (that hold the swivel bar) in a
cufflink single unit finding, softens following acetylene/air
easy soldering. When the wearer of the cufflink leans on his
wrists they will bend unless hardened stiff. How do you manage
to accomplish the hardening? Burnishing, buffing??

Again, my thanks and best New Years’ wishes from Sunny Southern
California. Paul Hartstein


#2

Hi Paul, use a pair of flat noosed pliers and twist back and
forth. That will do the trick (or break the soldering if it
wasn’t properly done) Hope this helps. R G D S Lars
Dahlberg/Gotland/Sweden


#3

Well, Paul, It’s been our experience that silver posts on
earrings just don’t hardened up enough once there soldered on. So
to avoid this we solder on white gold post’s instead the look is
better and annealing is not a problem with good torch control. If
this is an option for you, I think you’ll have your problem
solved. Good Luck Brenda


#4

Don’t have experience with the cufflink backs, but sterling
posts I harden by gripping them firmly at the base with smooth
jaw pliers and pulling up toward the top. I do this repeatedly,
working my way around the circumference of the post.

I’d sure like to know a better way too, though! Anybody?

Janet Kofoed in Philly


#5

Paul

With earring post I grab the post with a pair of pliers covering
the intire post, then I pull up on the post several times. This
helps to not only straighten the post,( if it is a little
crooked) but also “burnish” the post. It also helps if before
you put the earring post on use a pin stem in the hole to open it
up a little, then place it on the post.

Didn’t quite understand the soldering question. What I do to
solder on post is to first flow a chip of solder on the back of
an earring, (I use medium) then place a chip of solder on a block
of some kind. Heat it into a ball , then (using tweezers) pick
up a post and gently heat the block till the solder flows on the
post. After this place the post on the earring where the solder
had flown and heat the peice until the solders flow. In my
experience, clean up is no longer an issue around the post.

Katrina


#6
 Sterling silver earring posts readily bend after being
acetylene/air, easy soldered onto the back of the earring
unless stiffened.  

One easy trick is to grasp the post, once soldered on, near it’s
tip, and twist it. Twisting doesn’t thin or thicken or lengthen
the post, yet will work harden it. Just be careful not to twist
so much it breaks off.

   The vertical twin silver posts (that hold the swivel bar)
in a cufflink single unit finding, softens following
acetylene/air easy soldering.  When the wearer of the cufflink
leans on his wrists they will  bend unless hardened stiff.  

You can often hold the finding in a heavy soldering tweezer,
keeping most of that post from getting hot enough to anneal,
especially if you’re using an oxygen/fuel torch. The air
acetylene torches make this harder to do. My own preference is
to use a different type of finding which prevents this problem.
I use the cufflink backs which include a small swivel right at
the base of the link. You only solder on that small swivel,
which looks only a bit larger than a pin joint finding. Then the
rest of the link finding is rivetted to the swivel. It never
gets heated at all. This type of finding also lets the cufflink
ride against the shirt cuff better, as the link is free to find
it’s own best position, and if leaned on, the link just moves in
it’s hinge, not actually bending…

Hope this helps.

Peter Rowe


#7

I was taught to work harden earring posts by giving them a third
of a turn and then burnishing them to a bright finish. This seems
to work.

Alex

Alex Ball
Electron Microscope Unit
The Natural History Museum
London SW7 9BD

Tel 0171 938 8973/9348
Fax 0171 938 9268


#8

One obvious solution to the cuff link problem is short sleeved
shirts (bg).

Another way to harden sterling earing posts after they’ve been
soldered is to use a pin vise.

Grasp the end of the post (just below the notch) in a pin vise.
Tighten the vise securely & twist the post 3 or 4 turns. Remove
the pin vise. If the post is held above the notch, the post may
break at the notch when it’s twisted. The notch is the weakest
point in the post.

You can get a little practice by holding a length of wire used
for posts in a bench vise, then put the end in the pin vise &
twist. By noting how many turns it takes to break the wire & how
hard the wire gets after fewer turns, you won’t have to worry
about twisting a post off an earing.

What you’re doing by either twisting, pulling or squezzing a
post in a pliers is work hardening the wire.

Dave