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Help with gold bezel


#1

Howdy All,

After plenty of work with sterling, I decided to try some
fabrication with 14kt. I am attempting to solder a 14kt bezel
onto sterling. The problem I am having is the 14kt has too much
spring. I tried annealing in hopes that it would soften it
somewhat, but that did not help. The piece I am trying to bezel
is on the larger size (1"x1 1/2") and angular. I can’t get the
bezel to maintain the shape of the piece. Any suggestions would
be appreciated. Also, what is the preferred solder to
use–silver or gold for this application?

Thank you in advance,
Ketarah Shaffer


#2

I’m not sure what you mean by getting the bezel to maintain the
shape of the piece. Do you mean the angular base piece or the
shape of the stone? Annealing should help if you’re trying to
match the shape of the stone. It you are trying to fit it to a
base, it should be fabricated to match the surface it is being
mounted on.

Marilyn Smith


#3

What are you using for a torch? Propane/oxygen or
air/acetylene? Annealing my have left the surface oxidized,
after pickling rub the area where the bezel will be added with
fine sandpaper 600 or steel wool (has slight oil content so wash
the piece). You need to make sure the sterling is very clean-
and use a paste flux rather than liquid, and I would reccomend a
14k plumb gold solder-either medium or easy in several small
sections- heat the sterling (from underneath if possible). Once
the solder starts to flow direct some heat (gently) onto the
bezel.

Good luck!


#4

After plenty of work with sterling, I decided to try some
fabrication with 14kt. I am attempting to solder a 14kt bezel
onto sterling. The problem I am having is the 14kt has too much
spring. I tried annealing in hopes that it would soften it
somewhat, but that did not help. The piece I am trying to bezel
is on the larger size (1"x1 1/2") and angular. I can’t get the
bezel to maintain the shape of the piece. Any suggestions would
be appreciated. Also, what is the preferred solder to
use–silver or gold for this application?

Ketarah: I just did a 14kt bezel myself for the first time just
recently. I made the bezel myself with a rolling mill so it
wasn’t real bezel wire. I have to tell you that for the first
time I am really glad I got a hammer handpiece for my Foredom,
thats what it took to push it all down tight. You might try use a
small hammer and make your own setting tool. Gold isn’t soft like
silver is,at least not 14kt. As for solder, use silver solder
and use the smallest amount possible. 14kt is full of copper and
you can actually solder in onto silver just by heating it and
fluxing with no solder. We just had a discussion on this awhile
back. Don’t solder the gold on until the last as re-heating will
cause the gold to sink into the silver since the copper content
lowers the melting point of silver. Gold sure makes a difference
to silver work though, looks great…Dave

Art Jewelry for Conscious People
http://www.opendoor.com/stephensdesign/crystalguy.html