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Fine Silver Enameling Using Thompson Enamels


#1

Hi Everyone,

I am working on my enameling techniques - using fine silver as a
base. I have two questions resulting from the trials I did today and
I hope you wonderful folks can help.

The first odd thing was when I went to put a 3rd layer of Thompson’s
Aqua Blue onto a pendant. I also added a touch of Mars brown that
did touch some of the aqua blue. When the piece cooled all of the
blue had turned a muddy fir tree kind of green. I was really
surprised, I thought I would only get that from reds, and that only
the red area would turn like that. Any clues?

The other question relates to Thompson Acrylic Enamels. I got a
sample kit and have been trying to test fire them, but apparently I
am missing the instructions. I’ve been firing at 1500 like I do w/
dry enamels but only a few colors survive. Does anyone know what
temp I should begin watching those at?

Thanks so much
Amy Ikenn


#2

I also added a touch of Mars brown that did touch some of the aqua
blue. When the piece cooled all of the blue had turned a muddy fir
tree kind of green.

Brown is a composite of many colors, so it probably has some of the
same oxides as yellow and red, and so it reacted with the silver. I
have had reactions with the silver even though there are "safe"
colors under them. Often had red turn brown when there was clear
flux under it.

The other question relates to Thompson Acrylic Enamels.

The orange, red and yellow are really temperature sensitive. Try
firing at 1300.

Alana Clearlake


#3

Amy,

One question that might in return solve your problem. To what stage
are you firing your first applications? When applying several
layers, I fire just to the orange peel stage on all except the final
firing. Another thing I have done to prevent what you describe is to
mix a paste of enamel with whatever bonding agent,I use both oil and
gum depending on the curve of the piece, you normally use and apply
it with a stiff brush or a spacula. For some reason the colors do not
blend if applied in this manner. If using a sifter, I use a mask to
prevent the enamels from overlaying.

Hope this helps.
Richard