I finally relented and decided on an acetyline/air setup for joining
silver pieces rather than TIG. So now, I have a different question.
Last year, I had used bismuth, .999 pure, as a practice metal on my
CNC machine prior to machining silver, about $20 per pound. Expensive
compared to base metal but far cheaper than silver itself. I chose
the metal because it machined very easily but was also completely
non-toxic. It also does not oxidize easily, I make very nice ingots
of it with no discoloration whatever.
I have heard lots about how lead is very bad news for silver. But I
wonder what benefit I would get by creating sterling with bismuth
rather than copper. Anyone ever have experience with such an alloy?
Andrew Jonathan Fine