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Heat hardening argentium


#1

Hi All, Hope you’re not tired of talking about Argentium…yet. Was
wondering about the impact of NOT heat hardening pieces cast in
Argentium. Does this affect either the appearance or the strength of
the piece? (The designs involve heavy cast bezels which are work
hardened during setting…my newbie guess, anyway.) Also, best
polishing compounds? Thank you. (Really appreciate this forum, btw.)
LoriA


#2

Hi Lori,

When I got one of my cast bracelets back I was told I could harden
the pieces at 260 C in any oven- i used my conventional kitchen warm
air oven- for 1,5 hours. And to let it cool in there for a few
hours.

At first I didn’t bother, but one day I dropped one and noticed it
was stil quite soft and ‘malable’…

I wanted to see the hardening effect on the a.s. bracelet: i just
put the piece in my oven (actually i was heating up some leftovers).
And when my food was done i took out the food, turned down the oven
and left the bracelet in the oven to cool down slowly.

When i took it out of the oven like four hours later, it was hard
and ‘jumpy’… it felt great: like a spring… And this was five
months ago, but still no tarnish

best regards,
Stephen


#3

Hi Lori,

Was wondering about the impact of NOT heat hardening pieces cast
in Argentium. Does this affect either the appearance or the
strength of the piece? (The designs involve heavy cast bezels which
are work hardened during setting...my newbie guess, anyway.) Also,
best polishing compounds? 

My apologies about the delay in response—I’ve been teaching in
Alaska—two courses: Argentium Silver and Shell Forming (Synclastic
and Anticlastic Hammer Forming) Great people here, in a beautiful
setting.

Not heat hardening affects the strength of AS, but not as much as if
the piece were not cast. Air cooling the casting hardens the AS,
though I do not know how hard it is compared to heat hardened
(perhaps Charles Allenden can tell us?)

The appearance is no different if the piece is heat hardened or not.

I tend to use a brass brush finish (using soapy water as a
lubricant) so I am not an expert on polishing compounds. I use a
water-based tripoli and red or black rouge.

For added tarnish resistance, any heat increases the activity of the
germanium, creating more germanium oxide surface. It would also be
good to use a product containing thiol, such as Goddards Long Shine
Silver Cloth or liquid polish.

I hope this is helpful!
Cynthia Eid
http://www.cynthiaeid.com