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Enamelling supports


I am doing a bunch of experimental enamelling on ring forms. The tops
have been raised and then soldered to a shank using enamelling
solder. The tops are much bigger and heavier than the shanks, and
when placed on a trivet and fired, they fall off! I have reduced
firing temp and time, but I really need to stand them upright so the
weight is not an issue. Does anyone know how I can support rings for
firing so they can stand up? Any suggestions would be greatly

Claire in wintery Perth. I can support rings for firing so they can stand up? 

I’m a real beginner with enameling, but I have done some with
soldered joints involved. It seems improbable (at least to me) that
1540* solder would draw into a joint when fired with soft fusing
enamels at 1325*, but I guarantee you that it does that for me.
Perhaps the solidus is lower than 1325, I don’t know. But your
soldered joint may be less solid than you think. Especially if your
’enameling’ solder flows at 1460 or 1490 and you are firing in the
1400’s. (You can get 1540 enameling solder from Otto Frei).

Anyway, if you don’t get a reply with better ideas, try making a
fairly dense nest out of stainless steel binding wire and embed the
ring in that, or carve out a magnesia block so the ring fits nicely
in it with the top well exposed to the heat. The magnesia block
method has worked well for me. The blocks do get weaker with
repeated use so handle them gently.

Neil A.