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Laser welding with stones in place


#1

I am just wondering what other jewelers use for the protection of
stones while laser welding. I use Bob Stanley’s suggestion of
tac-it, and Rofin suggests toohtpaste.

Scott Isaacs
Berry’s Jewelry Co.
Nashville,TN


#2

Scott

I’ve tried nail polish , Rodico , tape , wet cloth (not toothpaste),
cyanoacrylate which works pretty good BUT !!! nothing works better
than a FINGER NAIL.

I let my left pinkie finger nail grow slightly above my finger tip
and that works best and it doesn’t look weird. The problem with
putting something wet like toothpaste on the area you are working on
if you hit that area covered it tends to go everywhere and now you
have to clean and reapply. My last trip to Vegas and Wisconsin shows
a few jewelers were telling me the same thing. FINGER NAIL…it
ain’t pretty but it works !!

Tony @ Cecenas Jewelry
Belleville , Il


#3
  I've tried nail polish , Rodico , tape , wet cloth (not
toothpaste), cyanoacrylate which works pretty good BUT !!!! nothing
works better than a FINGER NAIL. 

Except you cannot always cover everything you need, with a finger
nail. The other main material I’ve found very effective as a mask
against accidental laser hits on stones, is polymer clay. The dark
colors especially. We use a dark blue. the trick is to use a thick
enough layer so it’s not only just an optical shield, but a physical
barrier as well. At least a half millimeter or so, and preferably a
millimeter or more, and the laser won’t go through it. Note that it
DOES char, and if this seems to be happening more than a little,
don’t wait for it to finally burn through, but replace that area
before proceeding. Also note that as the work warms up from welding,
and the fimo or other brand of polymer clay (we use fimo) also warms
up from the laser, it does harden. Be sure you’ve not placed
excessive amounts imbedded into areas where, once hardened, it will
be hard to remove. So it’s not for absolutely every situation,
since sometimes you can create cleaning problems for yourself with the
stuff. and now and then I use white out correction fluid in fine
details where the fimo is just too hard to carefully place. Doesn’t
work as well, but a couple layers thick, and it will protect well
enough if welding at low power levels.

Peter Rowe


#4

When I feel the need for some stone protection beyond positioning
and fingers/fingernails I use black Fimo polymer clay.

Tim
A2Z Metalsmith Supply Inc
5151 S Federal Blvd Unit I-9
Littleton CO 80123
720 283-7200 Phone
720 385-2118 Fax
www.A2ZMetalsmithSupply.com


#5

Peter

That sounds good, where can you buy polymer clay. Is this available
at hardware stores? I normally use low voltage when working close to
any stone, if its too risky I will pull the stone. I have to say I
been fortunate so far not to hit a stone , but Im curious about the
clay.

Tony
Cecenas Jewelry
Belleville , Il


#6
where can you buy polymer clay. Is this available at hardware
stores? 

You can find Polymer clay at most craft stores. Michaels (chain) is
one that comes to mind in this area.


#7
    That sounds good, where can you buy polymer clay. Is this
available at hardware stores? I normally use low voltage when
working close to any stone, if its too risky I will pull the stone.
I have to say I been fortunate so far not to hit a stone ,  but Im
curious about the clay. 

One thing that I find to help working near stones is to use 40X
magnification on the microscope. Much easier to aim closely.

As far as the Fimo clay it is sold at craft stores like Michaels or
Hobby Lobby.

Tim
A2Z Metalsmith Supply Inc
5151 S Federal Blvd Unit I-9
Littleton CO 80123

720 283-7200 Phone
720 385-2118 Fax
www.A2ZMetalsmithSupply.com