Can anyone recommend a good copper solder that has a good copper
color to it? In reading Rio's description of their copper solder,
this doesn't seem to be the case. Would love to hear other possible
good sources. Hope everyone had a great
I have used phosflow #7, bought from Indian Jewelry Supply. It comes
as dark gray wire, but takes on a decently copper-colored appearance
when you use it.
I generally prefer, though, to use silver solder and copper plate
afterwards by wrapping the piece in binding wire and putting it in
very used pickle-- for boxes or other things that won't get a lot of
Google "phoscopper". You might even try a welding supply shop but
ask for phoscopper 'brazing rod'. The welding world knows it as a
brazing product and not a soldering product. Phoscopper is rated by
the amount of silver in it so the lower the number the better for
color. From what I've seen it goes from phoscopper 15 to 5 and then 2
or 3. Neat stuff!
Pver the years I've tried every single copper solder on the market.
Ones currently out there if you are not careful and know what to do,
will show grey. If they don't you have another problem if you need to
do any small bits of filing, Once the very thin surface of copper is
gone, it will look grey. I've learned so much working with copper
about things to do and not do I could write a book, but that would
be just one more thing to do. You can contaminate your pickle and any
problem would plate out as copper and cover the grey solder. Or as I
found, just use a bisulfate pickle compound (I use Rio pickle). Just
put a bit of copper in the pot when you mix a new batch. It is not to
contaminate, just season the pickle once it gets that slight tinge of
blue it is ready to use.
Another funny thing I stumbled on with soldering copper is how often
to pickle I again use the copper solder Rio sells, since I go through
many pounds a year. It was late one night, and I was too tired to make
the run into the next room just to pickle this one small ornament. I
did a major no-no. I soldered the piece a second time even though it
had the crusty black junk on it. (oxide, i just like my old lady
terms). It soldered just fine. A third try and it soldered again no
problem. I could never do that with silver or gold. I thought
lightening was going to strike me any moment. Since then, I found I
could turn out more of the complicated soldered pieces and not pickle
in between steps.
Now for some good news. I've been testing new batches of solder for
a company. This last batch worked great. It can be filed and react
like any other solder, but it is copper. They are a company that
already makes solder in all forms and metals when it does come out it
will be in sheet, wire, paste, and powdered as you need. I have no
idea the cost. I do trust this company and purchased quite a bit of
powdered silver solder from them.
Like Mr. Binnion has mentioned it is not a good idea to wear copper
jewelry every day. In fact I've not made any copper jewelry other
than a few charms for bracelets. Then it was only a secondary metal.
The sealers on the market wear off too easily for my standards. The
ones that don't I have questions about their reactions with skin.
Untreated, I hate the green marks it leaves.
Aggie in Fl where people I saw today were wearing down parkas to
combat the cold.
I like the Phos 7 copper colored solder from Indian Jewelers Supply
in Gallup, NM. It has the best color match I've seen yet. Comes in
wire form, probably about 20 ga.
Only downside is that when it flows, it spreads much more than
Thanks, Aggie. What is the company name you write about? Sharon
home and hardware stores have a decent "Copper Solder" paste that is
closer to copper colour than Rio's solder. it's equivalent to
approx. med. solder and is in a syringe with "flux" already suspended
in the mixture- add extra flux to the piece (warm the metal and spray
on or apply layers of flux- Cupronil brand works beautifully !)
unless you are trying to get a coloured effect from the same heating
(then seal with micro-crystalline wax). The stuff costs about 6 bucks
a syringe full and is in the plumbing section. But easier is to use
silver solder and then plate it copper coloured with your used
pickle- it's simple to do and you can build a thicker deposit than
regular electroplating when using really dark blue spent pickle. rer