Hello AS Moon,
I use AS as the acronym for Argentium Sterling.
Anyway, I began using AS when it first came out - Rio is the source I use. I’ll verify that it is hot short, but avoiding that issue is simply good preparation and planning before the torch is used. I like how easily it fuses. AS also work hardens more slowly than standard sterling. That extends the time/amount of manipulation before annealing is necessary. In fact, I rarely anneal AS as every time it is heated for soldering or fusing, it is annealed. Very handy if you are weaving chain.
I have replaced most of my standard sterling sheet and wire with AS. At this point have only a few things (like gallery and other specialty wires) in standard sterling. There are some items only available in standard sterling, but most of what I use can be obtained in AS. You asked if there is anything AS can’t do that sterling can, here it is. The tendency of AS to slump when heated IS a downer. I do keep some sheet in standard sterling to use when that might be an issue. Otherwise, it’s AS.
Let me rave a bit about AS solders. LOVE 'em. Two great characteristics: they flow at a slightly lower temperature than standard sterling solders, and they keep their color due to the tarnish resistance. Ergo, those black, tell-tail lines of tarnished solder on your finished work are gone. I use AS solders exclusively.
Another nice benefit of AS is that it can be precipitation-hardened. I use a programmable kiln, but if you want to find a used counter-top oven, the high heat will be sufficient. I make some simple 18ga wire hoops, and harden them this way. They retain their shape very nicely…even those in 2 inch diameter.
I’m not the expert on this subject. I refer you to Cynthia Eid. She posted quite a bit on Orchid regarding her experience with AS. Most likely a search will bring up her contributions. Also Rio Grande tech people are very helpful. There used to be a pdf detailing AS use and so forth on their website. Check it out.
Judy in Kansas, where it has been a rainy day. Poor Nebraska has been dealing with flooding, but it’s not a problem here…right now. No one knows what Mother Nature has up her sleeve!