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Solder Issues

I have a solder questions for the gang. There is one piece in
my currently collection I bang out a lot and usually I have no
problem soldering the pieces about 70% of the time. The other 30%
with this particuliar piece, the soldering gods are not on my
side. Here is the deal, I have a piece of sterling silver wire
(pretty thick pieces some are 14 gauge, 16 gauge and 18 gauge).
First I solder sterling silver beads onto the wire. Then I solder
the wire with the silver beads onto another piece of larger silver
(wrapping the wire with beads around it). I use easy solder when
I get to this point. 30% of the time before the solder gets to
melt -I melt the freakin bead. The bead unfortunately is on the
soldering point… Is there something I can put on the bead to
prevent it from heating up so quickly? The beads I discovered are
really not very substantially made. They are pretty much hollow. I
haven’t found a source that makes them more sturdy. Help! This
is making me crazy!


DeDe, have you tried heating from the bottom? That is, put your
whole construction on a wire nest or table, and heat from the
bottom of the heavier piece of silver? Also, what you might try
is to make solder filings (run a magnet through the solder
filings to remove iron filings from your file first), dip your
bead construction in thinned out Batterns flux, dip in the solder
filings, wire in place to your heavier construction, heat
the bead construction until the solder flows. You might
also try seamless beads, because they seem to have
thicker walls than machine made beads. Thunderbird and IJS
carries them. Hope it helps.

Hi DeDe, Is there room to solder the wire on each side of the
bead? You could solder a wire to the bead, drill a hole through
the large piece and solder the wire from the back side of the
piece. Good luck. Tom Arnold

Hi Dede Well, as I read your post - was just wondering that if
the only bead that melts is the one at the solder point - what if
you fabricated a bead by melting a bit of wire? Just run
experiments to get the size right. Visually would be the same as
the other beads. Some of the sterling beads I have seen are very
fragile. Not sure what size bead you are working with - maybe
someone could help you how to make solid beads that come out
easily the same size - more lasting.

Don’t know if covering that section with yellow ocre would work

  • if it is too close to the solder joint - any contamination by
    yellow ochre prevents the flow of solder.

Anyhow, just thought I’d join in the feedback here! cynthia