Interesting Idea but I do have my doubts on the matter metal clay
shrinks a bit when fired so it might not keep your link closed
Normally when you incorporate sterling silver you "bury" it in a bit
and the crimp hold it tight. I don't think they really fuse together
(for the sterling will have fire scale but I'm not sure on that)
Metal clay is some what brittle due to the little pore's the binder
leaves behind after burning away.
You can always try it out on one ring and see what happens. It would
be interesting to know if it worked.
You can dilute the clay with water and make your own slip. Put it in
a syringe and make the whole ring from clay. The joint is as strong
as the whole ring is. Or roll the clay in to a thin snake wrap it
around something and make a cut down the rod. You will have made jump
rings all you need to do is wet the joint so it makes contact
With the clay you can use sterling silver or fine silver both are
oke to use. If you can use Vermeil? I don't know.
There is a metal clay forum on Rings and Things
you can consult and ask your question there I'm sure "metal man" will
help you out good luck and let me know it your initial idea worked
after you try it out