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Half round dead soft Argentium wire


#1

Hi you’ll

I have a question that perhaps someone might be able to help me
with. I am fairly new at Wire Wrap I have recently bought some 21 ga.
square “Argentium Sterling Silver” wire. The help I am asking for is
I have been unable to find a source for 21 ga. half round dead soft
"Argentium Sterling Silver" wire. So my question or I should say
questions is first off do you or do have a contacts that has a source
for 5 or 6 oz. of for 21 ga. half round dead soft “Argentium Sterling
Silver” wire?

The second question is if I am unable to find a source for 21 ga.
half round dead soft “Argentium Sterling Silver” wire, what kind of
problems would I get into with using regular 21 ga. half round dead
soft (or non Argentium) “Sterling Silver” wire on the same piece with
"Argentium Sterling Silver" wire? Or in short mixing the two types of
Sterling Silver" wire.

Bob Place
@Bob_Place


#2

Bob,

I don’t know where to tell you to get half round AS in that gauge but
I can tell you that I have mixed AS with SS many, many times with
just fine results. Of course the regular sterling parts will tarnish
and you might get some firescale where the two metals intersect or
are soldered together. In many cases I use the sterling where I need
more strength and then the Argentium for other areas, taking
advantage of its non-firescaling properties. My problem is that I
don’t have a kiln and my oven only goes up to 500 degrees. I have
been trying to get an answer to my question on whether or not I can
still find a way to use my oven to precipation harden the AS -
otherwise it remains way too soft for the backbone of many of my
pieces. Any input on that precip. hardening question would be
appreciated. You might try calling Hoover and Strong - for an extra
fee they will usually do just about any gauge or temper you want.

Grace Stokes


#3

Hi Bob,

One solution to your problem may be drawing your own wire.

Using a drawplate with square holes you can turn round wire into
square of the size you need. You can use a drawplate with round holes
to make round or 1/2 round wire of the desired size. To make 1/2
round wire, you start with 2 round wires. join them together at one
end & draw them until you have the size needed. Drawing 2 round wire
together in a round drawplate will result in 2, 1/2 round wires.

Dave


#4

Great source for Argentium, T.B. Hagstoz, & Sons. 1-800-922-1006.
…seems they have just about everything.

Bev Ludlow
www.wirewrapjeweler.com


#5

Bob,
Pulling (draw plate) is the only way I get off size wires, and you
only pay extra once for the draw plate and it is with you forever.

Grace,
The article in this months (Feb 06) Lapidary journal, the guy who
originally developed AS, baked his at 300, the rest of the sites on
this item, recommend 500 or 550, I have done mine at 450 and 500 and
see no difference in the hardness I get. I leave them in 30 minutes
After baking AS though you will have a light yellow to tan coating,
pickle to remove. If you are doing rings, size before hardening, I
buggered up a ring stretcher forgetting to do that.

Terry


#6

Bob,

The article in this months (Feb 06) Lapidary journal, the guy who
originally developed AS, baked his at 300, the rest of the sites
on this item, recommend 500 or 550, I have done mine at 450 and 500
and see no difference in the hardness I get. I leave them in 30
minutes

wouldn’t you know after many years I finally stopped getting
Lapidary Journal - I will have to check out that article and
experiment with my lower temp oven. Thanks for pointing it out. One
other question - are your pieces made completely out of AS? Mine are
usually a combination - how would heating at say 450 degrees effect
the sterling or gold??

Grace S.


#7

Hi Bob,

G&S has 18 ga. Half round Argentium Sterling silver wire in 18 ga.
You might ask them if they’d be willing it stock it in a smaller
size. Or, you might invest in a half-round draw plate, and draw down
the 18 ga.

There is not really a problem with mixing regular sterling with
Argentium Sterling. It’s just that the regular sterling may have
firescsale and may tarnish faster. (And, of course, the piece could
not be stamped or sold a Argentium Sterlng.)

Cynthia Eid
http://www.cynthiaeid.com/


#8

Hi Grace,

One other question - are your pieces made completely out of AS?
Mine are usually a combination - how would heating at say 450
degrees effect the sterling or gold?? 

The other metals will not be affected by the heat hardening
process----whether it is at 580 degrees F, 450 degrees, or less.

Cynthia Eid
http://www.cynthiaeid.com


#9

Grace

The ones I make of AS are pure AS, I have thought of mixing, but I
have not done it yet. When I set out to try AS I bought 25oz, new
buffs, new grinding materials (one article said not to use carbide on
AS (and it was my primary abrasive with SS and fine.) of aluminum
base and separate solder, if I do mix it will be fine silver the
first time. So far the AS has worked as advertised, in fact I find
many of the new properties desirable and surprising, I will probably
finish my stock of SS and switch entirely to AS.

Sorry for drifting off to sales mode.

I would not expect any effect on the SS, gold I do not know, I don’t
use it much except as highlights or in weaves. After the first few
times of seeing the color change, I don’t even look anymore at what
is going on with the gold highlights or wire, just pickle and polish.

One thing, I forgot and left several pieces in for about 8 hours
once and they came out about as brown as a dinner roll, they cleaned
up fine, but it is really hard on the utility bill, and the pieces
seemed not to be any harder than the usual 30 to 45 minutes.

Grace, have you tried welding with AS yet, no bubbles like SS, the
pieces just seem to reach out and touch and merge and it’s so slow at
transition. I have not seen any ill effects from this yet, have you?
I find this easier to control than soldering especially on jump rings
and putting a filet on bezel bases. I have started rolling my own
bezel material of AS, if the stone will take the heat, I put the
stone in with it, if not I just wrestle with the burnisher unit it is
set. A post a couple of days ago made me think to try that, and it
worked.

Good luck to ya

Terry