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Preparing Silver for Liver of Sulphur


#1

What is the correct way to prepare silver for accepting a very dark
(blue/black) coloring with liver of sulphur?

I want to polish the piece initially to get rid of gross scratches,
but ultimately I am hoping for a matte black finish. Any ideas on the
best way to achieve this is appreciated!


#2
I want to polish the piece initially to get rid of gross
scratches, but ultimately I am hoping for a matte black finish. Any
ideas on the best way to achieve this is appreciated! 

Scrub the piece with pumice powder as a paste applied to the piece
with a brass brush, then patina.

Richard Hart


#3

Sally,

What is the correct way to prepare silver for accepting a very
dark (blue/black) coloring with liver of sulphur? 

I want to polish the piece initially to get rid of gross scratches,
but ultimately I am hoping for a matte black finish. Any ideas on
the best way to achieve this is appreciated!"

I’ve done a lot of research and bench tests for putting Liver of
Sulfur on Silver and getting many different effects, and with any of
them before you begin, your metal clay piece should be squeaky clean
and free from dirt, oils from your hands and polishing compounds.
Here
is a link to the article:

http://hollygage.com/pages/techniques_liverofsulfur.html.

It also discusses how to remove LOS, how to preserve the finish, and
how to make the results a bit more predictable by controlling as many
outside elements as possible.

Have fun!
Holly


#4

Sally,

What is the correct way to prepare silver for accepting a very
dark (blue/black) coloring with liver of sulphur? 

I want to polish the piece initially to get rid of gross scratches,
but ultimately I am hoping for a matte black finish. Any ideas on
the best way to achieve this is appreciated!"

I’ve done a lot of research and bench tests for putting Liver of
Sulfur on Silver and getting many different effects, and with any of
them before you begin, your metal clay piece should be squeaky clean
and free from dirt, oils from your hands and polishing compounds. Here
is a link to the article:

http://hollygage.com/pages/techniques_liverofsulfur.html.

It also discusses how to remove LOS, how to preserve the finish, and
how to make the results a bit more predictable by controlling as many
outside elements as possible.

Have fun!
Holly


#5

Hello, if you want to get a good flat black on SS try the following.
Make sure that your piece is clean really not water runs off straight
no spots that cling. Ss with a matted surface gives you a better flat
black, highly polished tends to give you a different look. Experiment
and see which you like.

OK, now use good fresh liver of sulfur, paint it on or dip the piece
and set the piece on top of your steam cleaner or under a light to
get it hot. You can heat it with a torch a bit but just a bit, you
don’t want hundreds of degrees only light bulb type heat. this takes
no time at all really. Once you see the color you want rinse
immediately. take a old tooth brush and soap and lightly brush
around, you want to stop the sulfur process and remove the active
chemical. Now you can put it in a tumbler with shot just for a
little bit, or pin tumbler etc. this sort of sets the color {at least
for me]. Here is a neat trick, sulfur reacts differently with iron,
so try dipping a brush with some liver of sulfur onto a piece of red
rouge and scrubbing that around on your piece with a little soapy
water as well. You can get great iridescence that way and they will
last.

good luck, D


#6
What is the correct way to prepare silver for accepting a very
dark (blue/black) coloring with liver of sulphur? 

I generally sand or bead blast the surface I want to darken with
liver of sulfur with ~150 grit abrasive. Then I put the piece in a
Pyrex beaker in which has been dissolved a small amount of liver of
sulfur. Heat to an almost boil and remove the objects, rinse and pat
dry with a paper towel. The places which are not intended to be
finished will be a real nice flat black and the finish will last. I
always highlight the design with a brushed or polished finish to
accent the “relief” created by the color of the silver and the black
patina. I sometimes use a thin coat of carnauba wax to make the black
even darker and perhaps make it even more permanent. Sandblasting is
the key. The more surface area for liver of sulfur to contact, and
the fresher the surface, the better.

D. Stine


#7
What is the correct way to prepare silver for accepting a very
dark (blue/black) coloring with liver of sulphur? 

I generally sand or bead blast the surface I want to darken with
liver of sulfur with ~150 grit abrasive. Then I put the piece in a
Pyrex beaker in which has been dissolved a small amount of liver of
sulfur. Heat to an almost boil and remove the objects, rinse and pat
dry with a paper towel. The places which are not intended to be
finished will be a real nice flat black and the finish will last. I
always highlight the design with a brushed or polished finish to
accent the “relief” created by the color of the silver and the black
patina. I sometimes use a thin coat of carnauba wax to make the black
even darker and perhaps make it even more permanent. Sandblasting is
the key. The more surface area for liver of sulfur to contact, and
the fresher the surface, the better.

D. Stine


#8

Hello, if you want to get a good flat black on SS try the following.
Make sure that your piece is clean really not water runs off straight
no spots that cling. Ss with a matted surface gives you a better flat
black, highly polished tends to give you a different look. Experiment
and see which you like.

OK, now use good fresh liver of sulfur, paint it on or dip the piece
and set the piece on top of your steam cleaner or under a light to
get it hot. You can heat it with a torch a bit but just a bit, you
don’t want hundreds of degrees only light bulb type heat. this takes
no time at all really. Once you see the color you want rinse
immediately. take a old tooth brush and soap and lightly brush
around, you want to stop the sulfur process and remove the active
chemical. Now you can put it in a tumbler with shot just for a
little bit, or pin tumbler etc. this sort of sets the color {at least
for me]. Here is a neat trick, sulfur reacts differently with iron,
so try dipping a brush with some liver of sulfur onto a piece of red
rouge and scrubbing that around on your piece with a little soapy
water as well. You can get great iridescence that way and they will
last.

good luck, D


#9

For best results the metal must be ‘clean’.

This means no oxides, no greases. All kinds of ways of doing this,
from a scrub with Fantastic followed by a rinse with alcohol, then
immediate coloring (or store underwater for a few minutes. (gloves!
ventilation!)

It is true that bead blasting cleans, and activates the surface for
even results.

See these articles at Ganoksin


best
Charles


#10

Having worked extensively with liver of sulfur and silver, I can
highly recommend washing your pieces with a paste made from baking
soda and water and then rinsing very well. The baking soda
neutralizes acids and removes grease.

Jackie Truty


#11

HI Dennis, Thank you very much. I am currently doing the exarimentation and I will definitely take your advise into the works.
Z


#12

Thanks, Jackie. I will do that.


#13

Hi Charles, Thanks for your reply. MUch apreciated for taking the time.