I would like to thank John Barton, Fishbre396@aol.com and Timothy
Hansen for their help with my problem with pits in sterling silver.
I turns out that it was a dual problem: overheating the metal
combined with incorrectly using the prips flux. As John so kindly
reminded me, I should have been heating the metal before I sprayed on
the prips flux. It seems to make no difference if you do not
overheat the metal but, once you do, pits occurr near the area of
The pits are shallow depressions in the metal that are associated
with grey, somewhat glassy deposits that, I think, are due to the
borax (?). Underneath the glassy buildup there is a very rough
surface so that the pit itself appears to be micro-pitted. Just for
scale, these pits are only about 0.2 - 0.5mm in diameter.
I figured that I was doing something different since the pitting
problem only appeared recently and I have been using prips flux for
some time. I will now write out a protocol for using the flux so
that I don’t forget again (I am over 40 and blonde!) Thank you all
for directing my experimentation toward a solution to this problem.
Debra K Hoffmaster in SE Michigan where it is grey and foggy but the
sun is shining in my workshop!