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Pickling Argentium


#1

I teach in a community art center in Indianapolis. Some of the
students want to begin to use Argentium. Do we need to provide a
separate pickle pot? We currently have two crock pots using bisodium
sulfate, one for silver and one for copper. In my home studio, I use
only one and put both copper and silver in it without problems. I
consider that the two crock pots at the art center server to separate
beginner’s work from the other students. There is limited space or I
would just put out a third crock pot.

marilyn smith
IAC dept. head, jewelry and metalsmithing


#2

Hi Marilyn,

I think that it will probably be okay to use the silver pickle pot
for the Argentium Silver as well. I, too, only have one pickle pot
in my studio for all metals, and have not had a problem yet. The
advice for the separate pickle pot is meant to help prevent problems
and provide the absolutely-most-optimal situation for those people
whose primary interest in AS is due to its tarnish-resistance, and
who want the most optimal studio-environment for problem-free
tarnish-prevention. In terms of tarnish prevention, separate pickle
is optimal, but not as important as using separate buffs and
soldering boards.

Cynthia Eid
http://www.cynthiaeid.com


#3
In terms of tarnish prevention, separate pickle is optimal, but not
as important as using separate buffs and soldering boards. 

Ok, that is good news and I have no problem asking students to bring
in their own buffs and soldering boards. Some already do. What about
tumbling in the same stainless steel shot. I’m assuming that should
be ok too.

marilyn


#4
I teach in a community art center in Indianapolis. Some of the
students want to begin to use Argentium. Do we need to provide a
separate pickle pot? 

Of course Cynthia’s response is an excellent one… but just for
giggles I thought I’d mention that I’ve always used a separate
pickle pot for Argentium.

After using sterling silver for years Argentium can take a little
getting used to. Eliminating as many variables as possible is a good
thing when you’re going through this process and a separate pickle
pot is a good place to start. I did start there and was never much
inclined to go back. Needless to say Cynthia’s advice is a good
reason not to bother. C’est la vie.

Cheers,
Trevor F.
in The City of Light
Visit TouchMetal.com at http://www.touchmetal.com


#5

Hi Marilyn,

Ok, that is good news and I have no problem asking students to
bring in their own buffs and soldering boards. Some already do.
What about tumbling in the same stainless steel shot. I'm assuming
that should be ok too.

I think that tumbling in stainless steel shot should not be a
problem. The thing to think about is whether a process or tool can
transfer the copper or traditional sterling from a previous
application to a subsequent use on Argentium Sterling. If copper or
traditional sterling get smeared onto the surface of the AS, then
that can cause tarnish or discoloration.

Cynthia Eid
http://www.cynthiaeid.com