I'm a jeweller in Owen Sound Ontario Canada and am rather new to
Orchid - been lurking for a couple of months. I work with my husband
Andrew, and we both do a fair amount of fusing with sterling silver.
One trick we've found is to coat the metal with boracic acid and
alcohol mixture (and burn off the alcohol) before fusing. It gives a
fine layer of flux over the surface which seems to help. I usually
fuse shapes onto the surface of the plate metal, Andrew does a neat
technique where he scratches patterns into the molten surface with a
scriber - basically draws in the molten surface.
One problem with fused sterling though - it is difficult to solder
(but not impossible) as the resulting metal is rather porous.
The British jeweller, Gerda Flockinger (from the 60's and 70's -
although still working today I think) was a pioneer in fusing
sterling. You might want to search her name on the web and see the
work. There is another British jeweller (but her name escapes me now)
who fuses 18K gold.
Sandra Noble Goss