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Is it necessary to solder ear wires closed?


#1

Hi,

I am wondering if it is considered customary to solder closed the
loop on ear wires (the loop that jump rings typically grab onto).
While I don’t think the piece hanging from the ear wire will fall
off, I am wondering if any jewelers have advice on what is expected
from customers. My work that hangs from the ear wire is very heat
sensitive and it is very difficult to solder, even with products
such as heat shield to protect the heat-sensitive parts. Thus I am
trying to make a cost/benefit decision on whether to persist in this
extra finishing step.

Thanks for any opinions/advice on this issue,
Lisa


#2

I much prefer a soldered loop, but when I have to attach an ear wire
to a heat sensitive earring, I ball the end of a sterling wire,put it
through the ring of the earring, then fold the balled end either up
and around the rest of the earwire, or fold it down over the earring.
It depends on the design of the piece. The important thing is to make
sure that the earring part hangs correctly from the ear wire.

Alma


#3

No, it isn’t necessary to solder ear wires closed. I have never done
so, nor have I ever purchased a pair of earrings with the ear hooks
soldered shut. I suppose there may be certain circumstances in which
I might do it - something heavy and particularly valuable as well as
heat resistant. But in general, no.

Ellen Weiss


#4

I don’t think that it’s necessary to solder the loop on ear wires
closed, as long as you make certain that it’s completely closed, so
that the dangle doesn’t slip out.

Vicki K, SoCal (yikes, that hot weather is here)


#5

Lisa,

I solder mine closed. It feels a bit more finished for me. I did
hundreds or even thousands of them in my apprenticeship so I don’t
even have to think about it anymore… it’s ingrained.When I look at
other people’s work, it’s one of the things I notice. The earwire is
part of my design rather than the “thingy” that holds my design to
the ear. Many of my customers notice and comment on them… some do
not. It’s a small matter for me and allows for a measure of pride in
my craftsmanship.

Jonathan


#6

I usually solder ear wire loops closed. It’s not because they are
likely to open while worn but because the wear and year they are
subject to in dressing table tops, jewelry boxes, handbags, etc
likely to work the loops open over time. If the dangle is heat
sensitive (e.g. pearls) I make the ear wire hook first complete with
soldered loop and use a wrapped link on the dangle.

Soldering the loops closed only takes a minute or so and leaves @e
more confident that the earrings will last.

All the best
Jen


#7

Hi Jonathan,

can you help me understand how I can create the closed version
easily? I’m still very not practice at all, but I like them closed
too…

Thank you so much!
micaela


#8

If the earring can’t be heated try this. Make an eyepin with extra
wire left after the loop. Thread the earring on. Twist the the extra
wire 3 times round the eyepin. Trim to size. Bend the eye pin into
an earwire. It looks great.

Richard Hopkins


#9

Micaela,

The best way to learn is by repetition. Cut yourself about 200 - 1.75
inch, 20 or 19 gauge wire in sterling. Ball up one end a little bit
to give it an elegant termination. Bend the termination forward and
then bring the wire around back to create the loop for the connection
to the earring, like an “S”. Slide your earring (try some copper or
brass blanks for practice) into the loop. Close the gap from the wire
to the termination and apply your solder there.You may melt many
wires before you get your touch. Don’t worry or beat yourself up over
failure. It is the best teacher bar none. Avoid running the flame up
the wire as this may anneal it. I use a small flame and paste solder
usually.When I was doing 30 at a time I fluxed and lined them up,
used wire solder and just flew through them…boom boom boom. By the
time you get through your 200 you will be a pro…or maybe cut
another 200 After you get the touch, experiment with altering your
shape and curve to be unique to your aesthetic.

Best of luck
Jonathan


#10

Hello Richard, If you are making fine jewelry, of c ou rse you
should solder it closed.

Have fun. Tom Arnold