I'll admit that I'm a noob at Mokume Gane, however I have done a
similar process with ferrous metals, called pattern welding.
They are essentially the same, virtually any method used for pattern
welding ferrous materials can be used to do bond nonferrous metals.
Reading Fergusons book on the subject isn't too far removed to the
process I currently perform.
One notable exception is the lack of flux used in Mokume Gane.
When welding ferrous metals flux is "sooooo" important, otherwise
it will produce a substandard piece.
When flux is used in hammer (press,roll) welding ferrous materials
it is supposed to be driven out of the joint by the hammering. If you
use the same method to make mokume you will need flux to help keep
oxides from forming on the faying surfaces just like ferrous pattern
welding. The biggest difference in most pattern welding and making
mokume is that in pattern welding you are making a much simpler weld
as the difference in composition of the various iron and steel alloys
is miniscule. But in mokume the compositions of the alloys generally
are much more diverse. It is this diversity of materials that makes
mokume welds more difficult.
Is it simply optional to use fluxes with Mokume Gane?
Yes and no, in limited situations you can use flux but in others it
will interfere with the bonding.
James Binnion Metal Arts