Back to Ganoksin | FAQ | Contact

Handy use for something not intended for jewelry

One of my colleagues uses one of those cheap rice maker machines for
pickle - I think it cost about =A320 from Argos and is nice and big so
can take all sizes of piece. You can set the temperature as you
like, it has a lid, looks good in a workshop open to the public and
he gets on really well with it. Best wishes Harriet, UK.

Dear Tony,

I do appreciate the advice. After more than a third of my life in
jewelry work and not so much of it is silver work, I do realize a
"better way" had to exist on that deep firescale in sterling. The
common advice is to cover it by heating and pickling, as building up
a layer for reticulation; or, by abrasive methods. I opted for
"getting it gone" and the abrasive route. I have used the auto body
compounds you suggest on autos, not on silver. Thanks, I have some
of this material and will try it.

That is, I will try it the next time I forget to firecoat the item
or simply overheat it! : )Actually, we have all made such mistakes
and fortunately some will say so and from that come solutions to the
problem. I do appreciate that very much in a fellow craftsperson.

This stuff sits on a shelf in the garage…simply did not think to
try it in metal work. Thanks.


Watch the auto abrasive though! You can reduce a surface quite fast
and DON’T PUY IT ON A BIG POLISHING MOP! A Felt wheel seems to be Ok
though. Otherwise hand polish with a cloth or a small pendant motor

Tony Konrath
Gold and Stone

I make and engrave quite a few ornate items of blued steel. Most of
them are flush inlaid with platinum, high karat gold, or fine silver.

One of the problems I have is in the “cleanup” of the extra precious
metal left above the surface of the steel.

After reducing and trimming the material as far as possible with very
sharp flat gravers and scrapers - sanding is the last step One of my
solutions is to glue abrasive papers onto wooden tongue depressors
(=C2=BE" x 6") with double stick tape to make economical sanding and
polishi ng sticks.

Since these sticks are generally warped a bit, stick the abrasive
paper onto the convex - not the hollowed concave side. Mark the
concave side with the grit number.

I use a wide variety of grits beginning at 320, running to 600,
1,200, 1,500 , 2,000 - as well as 2/0, 2/0, and 4/0.

Some have very thin hard leather or cardboard impregnated with
various polishing compounds

Brian P. Marshall
Stockton Jewelry Arts School
(Temporarily closed - due to illness)
209-477- 0550