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Enamels - yakkety yak don't jump back!

Hi guys,

I have a couple of questions concerning enamels and enameling.
First off, today I bought a 30 year enameling set up from a
friend. There were lots and lots of bottles of power and chunky
enamels. Could these still be good? What do I look for to tell if
they are not when I fire them? Secondly, I see in the Alpha supply
catalog where they are advertising stuff called Ceremit, “low temp.
hard curing enamel which require only 200 degree F. for one hour,
and the results is a ceramic like surface, which resembles a kiln
fired enamels in both appearance and physical properties.” Has
anyone had any experience with this stuff? What do you think?
wasting my hard, hard earned you know what? I would appreciate any
input. Sally is the springlike Bluegrass

I tried some stuff several years ago that sounds like what you
mention. It was pretty hard and didn’t chip off, but it looked
like a model paint. However, it didn’t come with very good
directions, so maybe I did not mix or use it correctly.

 30 year enameling set up -could these still be good? 

Your enamels are probably usable if they have been kept dry. What
do I look for to tell if they are not when I fire them?

If you try the transparents - after washing and applying on copper
over a layer of flux (transparent clear enamel) they look muddy or
cloudy, they would probably not be usable. I have some enamels
which are that old and they are fine. Yours will be-lead bearing,
so don’t clean off your enameling brush in your mouth and if doing
large scale pieces by powdering on enamel, wear a dust mask.

Donna in cold Wyoming with a lot of snow.

Dear Sally Goodloe:

There was a thread not too long ago about the Ceramit that you are
inquiring about…and the gist of the input was that the stuff did
not, and I repeat DID NOT! have the same qualities of vitreous
enamels… I have experimented with this product in the past with
terrible results, and since I do some enameling…I thoroughly
recommend that if you are generally interested in enameling, take
your hard earned cash and spend it in the use of proper enamels,
thus acquiring the desired effect that you wish to achieve…

But then again, you will see that others in this forum will
probably give you a similar input in this regards.

Bryna Tracy

One of a Kind Jewellery and Design

I also “inherited” a bunch of old enamels and I called Thompson
to find out if tthey were still good. The chemist said that they
were and I have used them with good results However, the older
Thompson enamels with three digit identification numbers are made
with lead. So take appropriate safety precautions when using

Tim McCreigh has a good description in The Complete Metalsmith and
Chuck Evans has another good one in Jewelry.It’s a fun fast process
that has the added benefit of producing interesting textures. You
can use small had objects including rings to make the cavity or
simply carve one. You do not need flasks or machines. One drawback
is the smell…yeah …burning fish smell.

Marilyn Smith
Windy and thankfully dry, midwest America