My own (albeit limited) experience has taught me that using only
hard solder for as much of the project as possible is the best way
As with all things, people will solder how they will…Some
Gold solder and soldering is entirely different from silver
soldering - it’s easy, and the techniques are a lot alike, it’s that
the solder behaves differently. Silver solder turns to water under
heat and goes Splatt!, gold solder can be controlled and slumped and
manipulated greatly more. It’s way better, and way easier to solder
gold than silver, for those reasons.
Because of that, there is really little use for medium solder in
gold (use it if you like it - I’ve never used it, or missed it, in
my life). Previous joins will stay put with skilled heating - gold
doesn’t need to be heated all over like silver does, so you can
solder right next to a previous seam with care.
Generally, the guidelines for the use of hard solder involve not
booby trapping your work, and to be aware that another jeweler will
work on it later on (same goes for xtra-easy - the bane of jewelry
repair ;} Structure should be hard soldered - ring shanks, ring
sizings, construction. Retipping and repronging should always be
done with hard solder unless you want me on your doorstep next year
because your previous solder flowed all over a piece. Applied things
like settings and anything that might need service over the years
should be done with easy solder - things that might need to be
removed or replaced by a future jeweler.
It’s just that, as Helen says, it’s best to use hard solder as long
as you can, on a piece. But don’t solder two rings together with it
(Like an E&W set) because they may need taking apart later
on…There’s a place for easy, too.