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General heating notes on precious metal?


#1

Hi Everyone,

is there a chart that lays out how to bring different precious
metals to an annealed state and a hardened one?

I hope you are all having a great evening! Its muggy and 80 in
Detroit…

Plants are loving it…

Christine


#2

Christine- No charts that I know of. though I’ll bet there’s a paper
out there somewhere.

I see that you are the president of the Michigan Silversmiths Guild
and an Adjunct Professor at Wayne State. If you need more
scientific/technical info for your students than I can provide, I’d
recommend that you check out the papers from The Santa Fe Symposium.
They have the most up to date scientific metals info I know of. They
paid more attention in school than I Here are the basics as I know…

Just heat it up. When I anneal I unless it’s platinum I coat it with
fire coat, turn out the shop lights If I can and heat with a softish
flame.

Platinum no coating, a hard flame, and you must wear platinum
glasses and heat to really glowing red hot and hold for at least 90
seconds.

Silver and gold I fire coat and heat til just barely showing pink. I
always cool a bit and then quench while warm, not hot. Rose gold must
be quenched hot and white gold should be allowed to air cool. Red
gold will get very brittle if not quenched hot and white gold will
get very hard if quenched hot. If I need spring in the metal, like
say on a clasp tongue I will quench white gold.

I like to anneal with the lights off so that I can see the color
changes better.

The softish flame helps reduce oxides. Too much oxygen = oxidation.
By softish I mean not a blue pin point but blue with just a hint of
red at the end. It’ll take practice.

There are so many alloys out there that if you are using one that is
new to you, it’s best to contact the supplier and ask.

I love to work in Continuum silver and it must be quenched after
kiln hardening to get maximum strength and hardness.

Have fun and make lots of jewelry.

Jo Haemer
timothywgreen.com


#3

Hi Jo,

Thanks for all the I have it printed out and taped to
my soldering station for reference!

I am currently the Pres of the Michigan Silversmiths Guild and have
worked as a teacher at WSU but currently am growing my small business
and studying at the school of hard knocks.

While in school I worked with a lot of sterling silver and am very
familiar with it. Gold, palladium and platinum is something that I
have been working at learning on my own. I feel pretty good (but
still learning) about my knowledge of lower karat golds and palladium
at this point (although the yellow skin on rose gold was a
conundrum)… and am looking forward to having more opportunities to
play with higher karat golds and platinum soon.

It seems like this is an area a general chart could be made for. I
usually work with metal from G&S Metals in Metro Detroit (Ann Arbor,
MI) and do not have a lot of experience of working in metals from
other suppliers are you saying that there are property differences to
consider between the manufacturers of the metal?

I am sure exact numbers for heating are important for manufacturers
and for some techniques, but I am wondering if we couldn’t construct
something that is basic enough for the home jeweler that has a couple
of torches, tanks and a crap load of enthusiasm could use to get them
on their way.

I hope all is going well out west! Its going to be a great weekend
here in the D!

Christine