I’ve made two attempts this week at a ring consisting of a wide band
with small granules evenly spaced in a lattice-like pattern all over
it. And rather than continue my trial and error frustration method of
solving this problem, I thought I’d appeal to all those more
knowledgable that I am. As of now, I haven’t been attempting the fine
silver fusing kiln and torch method – I’ve seen this demonstrated on
a video, but never tried it myself. If that’s what it takes, I’ll go
for it, but I’m hoping there’s another more straight forward (well,
less blindly experimenting) way.
What I’ve done so far: First i cut a width of silver for the band.
Then, using calipers I cross off a grid that will guide my palcement
of the granules. Then I make a divut in the places where the
granules should go (ok, i admit to having gotten lazy the last time
and only put in some of the divets so maybe that is part of the
problem) – then I form the ring, then I go through and with the pick
soldering method attach a tiny piece of solder to the area, pick up a
granule with tweezers, set tweezers on the melting solder and wait
for it to leap into place. If it’s off, I grab it and move it around
wiith the tweezers – a bit precarious, but I got close. The trouble
is post- pickle and tumble about 20% of the granules fall off and in
the midst of the soldering, some of them move just enough to annoy
Should I be soldering the granules when the ring is still a flat
band? Might be easier to get them to stay in exactly the right place,
but on the other hand, not sure how I’d manage to form it then.
Should I be using yellow ochre on each granule once it’s soldered?
I’ve heard that the firescale can be almost insurmountable with
ochre and sterling, but then again, I’m not opposed to having it cast
once it’s done since I’m really nervous about the granules coming off
even post tumbling which has happened to me in the past – I don’t
want my customer to go through that.
I’ve done things like this in high karat gold and it seemed to be
much easier possibly because the metal fused even without anything
fancy like a kiln.
Should I procede as I have been but with fine silver and then have
it cast into sterling?
Thanks in advance for any advice:)