Back to Ganoksin | FAQ | Contact

More argentium help


#1

I’m trying to fuse .9mm Argentium bead wire to the side of 20g sheet
Argentium. Because of the shape, I’m having difficulty in binding
the two together. The last time I fused delicate Argentium (gallery
wire) I melted a piece of it… twice… before I finally got one
bezel fused. I don’t want to make the same mistake with this so would
like some tips and advice.

I’ve gotten the shapes of the bead wire (in two pieces, one for each
side) as close to the shape of the cut sheet as I can. What is the
best way to bind them and make sure they stay in place while fusing?
Also, since the bead wire is delicate, how can I make sure I don’t
melt the wire completely while fusing?

Thanks.
Michele


#2

Is there a reason you aren’t using solder?


#3

Hi Michele,

I like to use T-Pins to hold things like this in place on a soft
Solderite board or firebrick.

As far as not melting something, remember that whether soldering or
fusing, whether it is AS, SS, or copper, the two pieces of metal
need to reach the same temperature. Therefore, the larger piece
needs more heat. Use the flux as a temperature indicator. Generally,
when two items are this different in mass, I put the flame only on
the sheet, and let the wire pick up the heat from the “sides” of the
flame.

The thing to remember when doing something like this with Argentium
Sterling or gold, is that these metals do not transfer heat the way
that traditional sterling and copper alloys do. So, do not “heat the
whole thing”. Instead, work sequentially, heating an area of the 20
gauge sheet until it fuses with the bead wire, and then moving to
the adjacent area, then to the next. After fusing one side, do the
same on the other side.

I hope this is helpful!
Cynthia Eid
www.cynthiaeid.com


#4

Thank you, Cynthia. I didn’t even think of T-pins. Duh! And thank
you for the heating tip. Will let you know how it works out. :slight_smile:

Michele


#5
Is there a reason you aren't using solder? 

Because Argentium doesn’t need solder and can be just as easily
fused. Especially when working with granular or filigree type pieces.

Michele


#6

Why aren’t you soldering it? Sure, it is wonderful that Argentium has
the ability to fuse, but there is a time to fuse and a time to
solder. This would be a time to solder. ronda

Ronda Coryell


#7

Ronda,

What would make this a time to solder and not fuse? The beading wire
is very small, like individual granules strung together. I don’t want
to get any solder showing between the “gaps” when it’s connected to
the sheet sides.

Michele


#8

Laura, I tried something similar and ended up scrapping it because
when I bent the piece into a cuff, the beaded wire popped off in the
spots that did not fuse. Soldering filled the holes just like what
you want to avoid, the piece turned messy and ended up as scrap. I
hope you ultimately have better success than I did. What bothered me
more than the design not working was the waste of my precious beaded
AS wire. I purchased some in every size a few years ago from Rio when
they carried it, and have hoarded what I have left since they
discontinued carrying it. They also stopped carrying AS/18k bimetal,
which I also used. Have you found a new supplier or source for the AS
beaded wire?


#9

I’m the one working on the bead wire project, not Laura, and
understand your concern. However, I’m working on a pendant and
earrings. I don’t think I’d be brave enough to fuse it and then work
it into a cuff. If I did want to do that, I think I’d bend the cuff
first, then apply the bead wire edging, probably using solder. But
for this project, fusing is fine.

No, I’ve got a hoard of the bead wire purchased from Rio too and I’m
also sorry they’re not carrying it anymore.

Michele