Unfortunately, I have read about pewter contaminating/pitting
sterling, and also that there may be a chemical reaction between
the two which might affect the wearer.
The problem with tin (pewter is usually almost pure tin with a trace
of copper) or lead, or alloys of the two, and silver, is that if
there are bits of these alloys on the silver, AND YOU THEN HEAT THE
SILVER to SILVER SOLDERING TEMPS, the lower melting metals will melt,
alloy with, and then sink into the silver, creating what can be
disastrous pits. But this only happens when the silver is heated to
substantially higher than the melting points of the pewter or lead.
You’re not doing that here, as you’re only heating enough to melt
the pewter, not to melt any silver alloy. So no pitting to worry
You can make your bails in silver, designed so they fit into a
suitable part of your mold so they’re held in position by the mold,
and they should have some part of silver that will extend into the
pewter, preferably with a shape that will “lock” into the pewter so
the joint can be purely mechanical in nature, rather than requiring
strength in a “solder” joint or similar bond where the tin would have
to “wet” the silver. You cast the pewter normally, it flows around
and locks into the silver, and voila, you’ve got your bail.
There should be no chemical reaction here to worry about. Both
pewter and silver as safe for the wearer, and the combination is no