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Niello


#1

Kia ora; Have any of you folk tried to use NIELLO? For those who don’t have jewellery books, this is an inlaying material which is very durable. It is a black material consisting of an alloy of silver, copper, and lead mixed with sulphur and heated, which would produce a mixture of silver, copper and lead sulphides. Having made a lump of it, one has to grind it up to a fine powder, and like enamelling, push the powder into the depths where it is to be inlaid, heat strongly, put more in to fill the depths completely, heat again, then abraid the job to cut the niello down to the surface of the work. I thought I’d try making it a while ago (outdoors!) - and finished up with a mess and an unusable crucible. I’d made two rings which fitted neatly one instde the other, with the outer one pierced with a sort of Roman pattern and soldered them together. That is what the niello was for as I tried the usual ‘liver-of-sulphur’ blackening process and after six months the ring was returned with most of the black missing. I finished up using a hard epoxy resin containing a black pigment. Anyone had any success with niello?

    /\
   / /    John Burgess
  / /      
 / /__   johnb@ts.co.nz
/ / \ \

/ (___)
(_________)


#2

G’day; Some of you may remember that quite a while ago I asked
if anyone had any experience with Niello. To refresh memory,
this is a hard, black meltable material made from silver, sulphur
and lead which I tried to make according to the instructions in
Sharr Choate’s book, but finished up choking and coughing over a
ruined crucible. But much water has gone under the bridge and a
lot more people have joined the forum since I asked, so thought
I’d have another go. I suppose that other materials have
superceeded niello by now, and I would like to know what I could
use for a durable black inlay (no, I know about sulphiding and
don’t want that; it wears off too easily) For instance, one
method of decoration is to pierce out a design in metal and back
this with another piece hard-soldered in place to give the effect
of deep incised design. I want to fill the piercings with hard
black material, sand off, then polish - it would look very
effective, particularly so in rings. (One solders a thin blank
ring inside a pierced one) I tried epoxy, but it is really not
hard enough and doesn’t polish well as the buff part-melts it and
pulls it out. Suggestions and know-how, anyone? I have made
some pierced rings in the past, using initials as decoration, but
the “liver-of-sulphur” blackening was mostly gone when I saw them
much later. Enamel? I tried that too, using finely powdered black
glass, but found it too difficult to control temperatures with a
torch: one really needs a small kiln for that. Oh, in case you’re
wondering, the knee continues to improve - but is still damn
painful! But jewellery is good occupational therapy! Cheers,

        /\
       / /    John Burgess, 
      / /
     / //\    @John_Burgess2
    / / \ \
   / (___) \
  (_________)

#3

Hello John

Niello is an extremely time consuming task. I have intentionally
stayed away from it, though I have associates that did it ONCE! :slight_smile:

For a durable and optically flat background I use the proven
"black velvet" technique. For your I’ll describe it.

The area to be blackened is sandblasted to a matt finish, then
heavily copper plated (5 minutes or more at 6 volts). The copper
is removed then from the area to remain gold colored. The black
finish is obtained from a proprietary formula known as Ebenol C.
The solution is heated and the jewelry piece suspended in it for
a few minutes. That’s all there is too it. The finish stands up
ultrasonic cleaning, and steaming, but vanishes in acid pickles.
It has a nice flat velvet look, and is very black. Aside from an
occassional cleaning, it remains looking good for years. I
haven’t bought any in some years as it goes a long way, but I
could try and find a supplier if you like

best of luck

         Jeffrey Everett

Handmade 18K, 22K, and platinum gemstone fine jewelry.
Diamond setting, rubber/metal molds, casting, lapidary
Die and mold engraving, plastic patterns for casting.
Cad jewelry design, cad/cam milling scroll filigree…
P O Box 2057 Fairfield IA 52556 515-469-6250

From: John Burgess johnb@ts.co.nz
To:
Subject: Niello
Date: Tuesday, February 18, 1997 8:49 AM

==== > > G’day; Some of you may remember that quite a while
ago I asked > if anyone had any experience with Niello. To
refresh memory, > this is a hard, black meltable material made
from silver, sulphur > and lead which I tried to make according to
the instructions in > Sharr Choate’s book, but finished up choking
and coughing over a > ruined crucible. But much water has gone
under the bridge and a > lot more people have joined the forum
since I asked, so thought > I’d have another go. I suppose that
other materials have > superceeded niello by now, and I would like
to know what I could > use for a durable black inlay (no, I know
about sulphiding and > don’t want that; it wears off too easily)
For instance, one > method of decoration is to pierce out a design
in metal and back > this with another piece hard-soldered in place
to give the effect > of deep incised design. I want to fill the
piercings with hard > black material, sand off, then polish - it
would look very > effective, particularly so in rings. (One
solders a thin blank > ring inside a pierced one) I tried epoxy,
but it is really not > hard enough and doesn’t polish well as the
buff part-melts it and > pulls it out. Suggestions and know-how,
anyone? I have made > some pierced rings in the past, using
initials as decoration, but > the “liver-of-sulphur” blackening
was mostly gone when I saw them > much later. Enamel? I tried that
too, using finely powdered black > glass, but found it too
difficult to control temperatures with a > torch: one really needs
a small kiln for that. Oh, in case you’re > wondering, the knee
continues to improve - but is still damn > painful! But jewellery
is good occupational therapy! Cheers, >


#4

Philip Fike, one of the founding members of the Society of North
American Goldsmiths (S.N.A.G.) is about the only person that I
know of that is still doing Niello. This was a technique that was
developed during the Etruscan/Roman era and uses lead as the base
element. I can’t find my copy of Metals Technick" at the moment,
but I am pretty sure that he has a chapter devoted to the
process. Your comment about being smoked out by the fumes means
that you must have been doing it correctly. Phillip shows how to
build a fume extraction system to suck the toxic smoke outside.
Hope that this at least points you in a direction. Lee Marshall
Bonny Doon Engineering http://www.bonnydoonengineering.com


#5

John:

Within the last 2-3 months there was a discussion of updated
niello techniques by some very knowledgeable jewelers in
rec.crafts.jewelry. If you can tap into their archives you’ll
discover several new “recipes.” If you can’t locate it you
might send Peter Rowe an e-mail. As I recall he was one of the
contributors and he may remember exactly when it was. Within
time constraints, he is also very generous with his very
considerable knowledge and will probably share his own approach
with you.

Rick Martin
MARTIN DESIGNS


#6

Please report back to the group if you find out neat stuff on this!
Thanks! Charles

Within the last 2-3 months there was a discussion of updated
niello techniques by some very knowledgeable jewelers in
rec.crafts.jewelry. If you can tap into their archives you’ll
discover several new “recipes.” If you can’t locate it you
might send Peter Rowe an e-mail. As I recall he was one of the
contributors and he may remember exactly when it was. Within
time constraints, he is also very generous with his very
considerable knowledge and will probably share his own approach
with you.

Brain Press
Box 1624, Ste M, Calgary, Alberta, T2P 2L7, Canada
Tel: 403-263-3955 Fax: 403-283-9053 Email: @Charles_Lewton-Brain

Metals info download web site: http://www.ganoksin.com/borisat/tip_sear.htm
Product descriptions: http://www.ganoksin.com/kosana/brain/brain.htm
Links list hosted at the Metal Web News:
http://tbr.state.tn.us/~wgray/jewelry/jewelry-link.html


#7

From rec.crafts.jewelry 3rd Feb, 1997.

A very old method of providing contrast on silver and other
metals was the use of the black material called Niello. There
are various recipes, but all involve silver, copper, and lead
with a lot of sulphur.

My question is whether anyone out there come up with a variation
on this that uses any alternative, (and safer) metal to the
lead?

Ron Charlotte – Gainesville, FL
afn03234@afn.org

In the book Design and Creation of Jewelry 3rd ed. by Robert
von Newmann he supplies many niello recipes including one he
attributes to Pliny which called for Silver 3 parts, Copper 1
part, Sulfur 2 parts. He also has one which he identifies as a
"student experiment" which uses silver 90% copper 10% antimony
1% and sulfer in excess. >From what I understand the lead was
used to make the niello more maliable and therefore more durable
on the final piece. What concerns you about the lead? Not to
preach but it’s all arround us (venician blinds, pottery, etc.)
I mean I wouldn’t want lead in say the nielloed lip of a cup or
a child’s toy, or in a ring that would constantly contact the
skin. But there are a lot of applications where the small amount
of lead in the niello would be just fine. Use proper safety
precautions and good venting. Ohterwise try it w/o the lead as
in Pliny’s recipe.

              Good luck, I'd like to hear about your results,

                         Timothy

You can make niello without the lead, using just the silver and
copper. but it will be much harder to work with. The normal
techniques for working niello call for applying it by melting it
into the engraved or otherwise depressed areas you wish to fill.
So far so good, doesn’t need lead. but then, after filing,
sanding, etc, you burnish the warmed niello to give a final
finish and remove pits and pinholes. Without the lead, it will
be much harder to burnish, and the final application will also
tend to be more brittle and prone to cracking. Also, with a
higher melting point, you have a harder time preparing and
applying the stuff without some breakdown, leading to greater
numbers of pinholes. Keep in mind that its a decorative material
not normally used in food grade vessels in any case, and the lead
sulphides, once applied, are stable enough in normal wear not to
constitute any appreciable risk. Now, making the stuff in the
first place is a different story, but more on account of the
sulphur than the lead. You’ll need to do this in a well
ventilated outdoor location in any case, so any fumes from
melting the material including the lead should not be a problem.
Once made and prepared, the raw niello melts at a low enough
temperature as to not need special precautions.

Personally, I would worry much about that lead content.

Hope this helps.

Peter Rowe

Peter W. Rowe M.F.A., G.G.
Commercial and custom jeweler and metalsmith
Graduate Gemologist and Lapidary


#8

Hi John, I think you’d be pleasantly surprized (if you don’t
know already) how fondly you are thought of amongst our little
shifting community on notes to each other.

You are after contrast between at the metal surface and a
darkened recessed one. There are clearly many ways to effect
this. I’ve done Niello (yes I recomend Phil Fikes in
the McCreight Metals Technic book (I have a chapter in there
too). Phil is definitley the West’s contemporary master of niello
use. You can contact Tim directly to order a copy of this book
at: tjmcc@ime.net

Niello requires great ventilation, the best folks doing it
currently are probably the Thais (check out Thai goldsmiths in
New Zealand). Recessed areas however can be darkened in a number
of ways. Use a permanent black marker. use black paint intended
for autos (used by many ‘class ring’ manufacturers). Use epoxy
which has had either black childrens tempera powder paint mixed
into it or perhaps graphite powder or even black glass
enamel.This is the kind of thing specialized museum staff do
when repairing niello in old objects. They even use shellac and
powder paint (much less durable but looks great).Epoxy spills are
easily sanded and polished off. Remember the secret to using
epoxy well is really really long mixing times. When you are bored
keep on mixing a while.

Otherwise you may consider using Nugold or its eqivalent for the
background material. They can be blackened to look just like
niello. Nugold and such metals are high copper content brasses.
Normal brass is 35% zinc, these are 5-15% zinc and are sometimes
called 'jewelers bronze"-nothing to do with bronze of course (tin
and copper=bronze) but a kind of trade misnomer that gets
repeated. Kieth Lewis, an American artist/metalsmith discovered
an interesting way of mimicing niello in a workshop I taught.

He used the high copper content brass, inlaid gold into it (a
fusion inlay technique) and then cleaned the metal surface really
well (pumice, detergent and ammonia etc-see the metal cleaning
hints on the tips page) and then heated up some household ammonia
in a covered pyrex or corningware dish. (on a hot-plate or in a
microwave oven). Then he took the recently cleaned metal and
immersed it momentarily in hot water (to equalize out any
differential coloration due to increased activity in outer areas
of the sheet due to temperature) and held it in the hot ammonia
fumes for about 30 seconds. The high copper brass turns a lovely
color which is indistinguishable from niello. Where he had inlaid
the gold and silver those metals retained their colors but the
metal they were inlaid in turned this lustrous black. I am sure
you can get this as a background color for your pieces. I was at
a conference when Kieth showed me a number of pieces he had done
since our workshop. I grabbed Kieth and took him over to Phil
Fike (an old friend). Phil thought the pieces were niello. If
Phil Fike thought these pieces were niello then thats as close as
you can get. Charles

Brain Press
Box 1624, Ste M, Calgary, Alberta, T2P 2L7, Canada
Tel: 403-263-3955 Fax: 403-283-9053 Email: @Charles_Lewton-Brain

Metals info download web site: http://www.ganoksin.com/borisat/tip_sear.htm
Product descriptions: http://www.ganoksin.com/kosana/brain/brain.htm
Links list hosted at the Metal Web News:
http://tbr.state.tn.us/~wgray/jewelry/jewelry-link.html


#9

You wrote:

G’day; Some of you may remember that quite a while ago I asked if anyone
had >any experience with Niello.

John, I have had no direct experience with niello, but having
just read about the technique I thought I might pass on what I
found. The following is from Ron Edwards’ book, The Technique
of Jewelry.

"In the 11th century A.D., Theophilus made various alloys for niello work,
the primary one being:
Silver 2 parts
Copper 1 part
Lead 1/2 part
and a unspecified amount of sulphur.

(My (Mr. Edwards) experience proved satifactory when I used
sulpher that was twice the quantity of the other three
components, ie 7 parts sulpher to 3 1/2 parts of silver, copper
and lead.)"…

…“To make, melt the silver and copper together and when molten
stir well with a carbon, graphite, or ceramic rod. Now add the
lead, which will melt immediatly. Stir again and remove ant
dross that rises to the surface. In another crucible have the
sulphur which has already been melted or heated, and into this
crucible pour the niello alloy and mix all thoroughly together.
There are some schools of thought which suggest that the sulphur
is not melted or heated but just thrown in. It is really a
matter of experimentation to find out what gives the best
results, but the aim is that all the ingredients must be mixed
into a homogeneous mass. Then pour onto an oiled sheet of steel
or into an ingot mould. On cooloing the lump of niello can be
broken up and ground to powder, then seived through an 80 guage
mesh.”

“When the niello has been ground and washed in distilled water,
pour off the impurities that may float to the surface. Store the
cleaned niello in a stoppered bottle with distilled water
covering it. This will insure that it will remain free of
impurities.”

“To use the niello powder, dry it in front of the kiln or in the
kiln at a very low temperature. When ready for use, the niello
powder can be laid into the recessed areas with a spatula. If
the walls of the recesses are undercut it is a decided advantage,
but if they cannot be undercut it is advisable to coat the
recesses with a weak borax solution to ensure a firm cohesion
when the niello fuses. Try not to overspread the niello as if
the niello is made too hot it will burn into the surface of the
metal and would have to be filed away”

“Sprinkle a little powdered borax over the work as a fusing
agent, and place the piece into the slow kiln at a low
temperature. Watch carefully until the niello has fused and take
it out of the kiln immediately as it should not be overheated or
its lead content will corrode the gold or silver.”

“Should the niello begin to spread or wander, push it back into
position with a hot spatula, and also use this to firm the niello
down if necessary. Allow to cool off and do not quench. File
away any excess but not quite down to metal. Re-heat the piece -
or pass a hot iron over, not on, the work, then with a lightly
oiled burnisher, quickly burnish down the remaining niello until
it is level with the metal surface, which will remove any air
bubbles which may have arisen.”

“…Care must be taken when polishing, as the niello could be
dragged or scoured out. If this happens, wash thoroughly, and
pass the hot iron over the workto re-fuse it.”

I hope that this might be of some help.

Steve Wiser

Steve Wiser
PO Box 938
Santa Margarita, CA 93453
(805) 438-5232


#10

As long as we are getting beyond the subject of niello, and onto
substitutes- If you take niobium sheet or wire and heat it until
it is red hot, and allow it to cool a surface of black niobium
pent-oxide will build up on the surface. It is very hard, much
more durable than oxidizing patinas that result from liver of
sulphur or black max, can be burnished, and looks very muck the
same color as niello. I’ve been making wedding bands based on
this process for 10 years, and while I occasionally re-oxidize a
surface, in general the finish is pretty durable.

Rick Hamilton
Richard D. Hamilton, Jr
http://www.rick-hamilton.com
@rick_hamilton


#11

You wrote:

G’day; Some of you may remember that quite a while ago I asked if anyone
had >any experience with Niello.

John, I have had no direct experience with niello, but having
just read about the technique I thought I might pass on what I
found. The following is from Ron Edwards’ book, The Technique
of Jewelry.

"In the 11th century A.D., Theophilus made various alloys for niello work,
the primary one being:
Silver 2 parts
Copper 1 part
Lead 1/2 part

and a unspecified amount of sulphur. (My (Mr. Edwards) experience
proved satifactory when I used sulpher that was twice the
quantity of the other three components, ie 7 parts sulpher to 3
1/2 parts of silver, copper and lead.)"…

…“To make, melt the silver and copper together and when molten
stir well with a carbon, graphite, or ceramic rod. Now add the
lead, which will melt immediatly. Stir again and remove ant
dross that rises to the surface. In another crucible have the
sulphur which has already been melted or heated, and into this
crucible pour the niello alloy and mix all thoroughly together.
There are some schools of thought which suggest that the sulphur
is not melted or heated but just thrown in. It is really a
matter of experimentation to find out what gives the best
results, but the aim is that all the ingredients must be mixed
into a homogeneous mass. Then pour onto an oiled sheet of steel
or into an ingot mould. On cooloing the lump of niello can be
broken up and ground to powder, then seived through an 80 guage
mesh.”

“When the niello has been ground and washed in distilled water,
pour off the impurities that may float to the surface. Store the
cleaned niello in a stoppered bottle with distilled water
covering it. This will insure that it will remain free of
impurities.”

“To use the niello powder, dry it in front of the kiln or in the
kiln at a very low temperature. When ready for use, the niello
powder can be laid into the recessed areas with a spatula. If
the walls of the recesses are undercut it is a decided advantage,
but if they cannot be undercut it is advisable to coat the
recesses with a weak borax solution to ensure a firm cohesion
when the niello fuses. Try not to overspread the niello as if
the niello is made too hot it will burn into the surface of the
metal and would have to be filed away”

“Sprinkle a little powdered borax over the work as a fusing
agent, and place the piece into the slow kiln at a low
temperature. Watch carefully until the niello has fused and take
it out of the kiln immediately as it should not be overheated or
its lead content will corrode the gold or silver.”

“Should the niello begin to spread or wander, push it back into
position with a hot spatula, and also use this to firm the niello
down if necessary. Allow to cool off and do not quench. File
away any excess but not quite down to metal. Re-heat the piece -
or pass a hot iron over, not on, the work, then with a lightly
oiled burnisher, quickly burnish down the remaining niello until
it is level with the metal surface, which will remove any air
bubbles which may have arisen.”

“…Care must be taken when polishing, as the niello could be
dragged or scoured out. If this happens, wash thoroughly, and
pass the hot iron over the workto re-fuse it.”

I hope that this might be of some help.

Steve Wiser

Steve Wiser
PO Box 938
Santa Margarita, CA 93453
(805) 438-5232


#12

"In the 11th century A.D., Theophilus made various alloys for niello
work, the primary one being:

Since we are talking about obscure and ancient formulas for
making niello, shouldn’t someone see what Cellini had to say? If
memory serves me correctly, he recommends rubbing the product
down with the urine of little boys.

E-mail: manmountaindense@knight-hub.com WWW:
http://www.knight-hub.com/manmtndense/bhh3.htm Snail: POB 7972,
McLean, VA 22106


#13

Jeffery Everett said:

JE> Niello is an extremely time consuming task. I have intentionally
JE> stayed away from it, though I have associates that did it ONCE! :slight_smile:

G’day, Jeffery; Having badly choked during my first effort, I
think I won’t bother now either!

JE> For a durable and optically flat background I use the proven
JE> “black velvet” technique. For your I’ll describe it.
JE> The area to be blackened is sandblasted to a matt finish, then
JE> heavily copper plated (5 minutes or more at 6 volts). The copper
JE> is removed then from the area to remain gold colored. The black
JE> finish is obtained from a proprietary formula known as Ebenol C.
JE> The solution is heated and the jewelry piece suspended in it for
JE> a few minutes.

I’m afraid that I don’t do much gold work these days - unless I
can find someone to pay for it :slight_smile: I work in sterling which is
so much cheaper :smiley: so I wouldn’t need to copper plate first, but
of course one has to clean off the pure silver surface left after
pickling. However, this Ebenol C you mention does seem to have
the same characteristics as “liver-of-sulphur” and I don’t want a
mere blackening of a few thous. I intend to try and get a
reasonably low temp melting black enamel (glass) - which will
doubtless be based on one of the lead glasses, but exotic
materials are scarce in NZ. But thanks a lot for your thoughts.
Cheers, PS: Can’t remember If I sent this before, but it was
still in my ‘to send’ file, so forgive me if you’ve already had
it!

        /\
       / /    John Burgess, 
      / /
     / //\    @John_Burgess2
    / / \ \
   / (___) \
  (_________)

#14

Hi John, The Ebenol C is quite permanent, as I stated further on
in my post. I have gotten rings back 5 years later and had the
black completely intact. An ultrasonic cleaning and steaming and
the finish was good as new (as long as it wan’t abraded or put
into acid). It is basically the same substance that is used to
blacken the insides of telescopes and binoculars…

The lowest temp glass I’m aware of melts at about 1200 F. The
are colored epoxies (not ceramitation but better) that polish to
a glass finish and have a hardness equivilant to glass. If you
like, I’ll send the …

       Jeffrey Everett, jewelry craftsman

Handmade 18K, 22K, and platinum gemstone jewelry.
Diamond setting, rubber/metal molds, casting, lapidary
Die and mold engraving, plastic patterns for casting.
Jewelry design, cad/cam, milling, scroll, filigree, & more.
P O Box 2057 Fairfield IA 52556 515-469-6250


#15

Speaking of Niello (and you were) I’m trying to find a small amount.
Any ideas where?
Gary Strickland, GJG


#16

Hi Gary;

I’m afraid there’s probably not a source for niello. I’ve made it a
few times. It’s a bit of a lengthy explanation. I used one part
lead, one part copper, and four parts silver, but there are
variations on this ratio.

In a crucible hereafer used only for this purpose. . .

Melt the copper first, then add silver, then toss in the lead. Make
sure you have excellent ventilation for what you are going to do
next. While the metal is molten, start spooning on powdered sulfer.
The fumes from this will peel your eyeballs, so don’t lean over it.
Using a wooden stick, keep stirring in sulfer while you keep it
molten with the torch. When you’re satisfied you’ve created lots of
silver halides (John Burgess, am I right here?) pour it down a piece
of angle iron about 2 feet long, propped at about a 30 degree
incline. This will pour out a long stream which will soon solidify.
You can then break it up into managable sticks. You flux your metal
to be inlayed, using a paste flux. Heat it just enough to be able to
"flood" the niello into it when you touch the neillo stick to the
metal being inlayed. Look for little globs of flux floating up, and
lift them off with a pick. These will hide pits in the niello. When
it cools, sand and polish like metal.

This is a simplistic explanation, and the topic deserves more
research. I think there are some formulas and instructions in
Phillip Mortons book, oops, can’t remember the name, Contemporary
Jewelry Design? or something? Hopefully someone knows what I’m
talking about. I learned neillo work from the great niellist,
Phillip Fike. He used to inlay niello on those silver Cross pens
with the grooves on them. Wonderfull effect. It works nicely on
gold too, and probably platinum as well.

David L. Huffman


#17

Gary, I don’t have first hand experience, but know from my art
history studies that niello procedure is very toxic, and just wanted
to make sure you’re aware of that. --Quik


#18

I believe that Metalsmith featured someone who worked in Niello.

Mcreight p69 provides a pithy description of Niello, a mixture of
silver, copper and lead sulphides. I remember in high school that we
had sulphides of heavy metals in the lab. So wouldn’t it be possible
to take the prepared sulphides and melt them (in a very well
ventilated room, perhaps even outside) in the correct proportion? Or
is this way out to lunch?

David in Victoria


#19
    Speaking of Niello (and you were) I'm trying to find a small
amount. Any ideas where? Gary Strickland, GJG 

G’day; I don’t think ‘anyone’ makes it for sale. You have to make it
yourself (see Tim McCreight’s book) or get some really extremely kind
and publicly minded soul to make it for you. (I did, but I’m not
about to disclose her name!) I choked for three days afterwards (when
the wind suddenly changed) when I tried. And I’m used to noxious
substances! That is however not to say that niello itself is noxious

  • it isn’t, just the making of it is! However, a (poor, but safe)
    substitute is a really good quality epoxy resin, coloured black with
    carbon. Or an epoxy dye. Cheers and have a happy niello/epoxy. –
    John Burgess; @John_Burgess2 of Mapua Nelson NZ

#20

Most of the Niello work I own is from Thailand, perhaps Dr. Aspler
could chime in here a bit. I love the work and have collected it for
about 40 years. See it now in Antique Shops and Estate resellers at
very jacked up prices. One displayed his in extremely tarnished state.
When I suggested polishing it with a cloth, he jumped all over me
about not touching antiques. I wear mine with love.
Teresa