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Polishing Argentium - Removing Germanium Layer


#1

Hi Cynthia,

Awhile back I posted a question regarding some coils I made that
turned black and you suggested the procedure in your experiment…
simply heat with a torch. At the time I was skeptical that it would
work but sure enough they turned from black to white. In hindsight I
was pretty shocked.

Regarding your comment: “In my experience, Argentium Sterling does
NOT always discolor when it is heat treated for hardening. If the AS
has been annealed or soldered and pickled, but the surface has not
been abraded (polished, sanded, or filed…), then the AS usually
stays white during the hardening process. If the surface of the AS
has been abraded before hardening, then there is silver and copper
exposed, and it tarnishes before the germanium can grab the oxygen.”

This is very interesting and now that I think of it, the last batch
of Argentium I hardened WAS abraded. Your explanation makes total
sense now that I think about it. That is the great thing about
Argentium… it does behave differently from Sterling (in the best of
ways) but in the end there always seems to be a simple, common sense
explanation.

I have started to keep a file with basic info like this highlighted
so that I can re-read it from time to time. Sometimes it takes awhile
for things to sink in, at least with me.

Thanks for your reply as always,
John