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Soldering end cap to sterling snake chain

I recently had to re-solder the end cap onto an ordinary
Italian-made sterling snake chain, about 1.8 or 2mm thick. After
soldering, I dangled that end in pickle. Ten or fifteen minutes
later when I pulled it out that area was all red - plated in copper,
I presume. What’s the deal here? Is steel used in snake chains in
some manner? It cleaned off easily with steel wool, but I still
wonder what was going on. What do the Orchid experts have to say?


Dear Bill Probably u might have dropped some steel pieces into ur
pickling tank without ur notice. In my experience if u happen to
drop iron piece into pickling tank, u get a copper oxide coating over
the material. Which will get removed in the further polishing
operation. To avoid throwing away the pickling solution, I normally
use wooden stick for stirring the pickling solution for few minutes
and the found the solution re usable. I don’t know how copper oxide
get’s dissolved in wood. However, it works perfectly. Sridharks,
Titan Industries ltd, jewellery division, India

Hi Bill, sorry I can’t help you with your question, but I have one
for you. How did you go about soldering the cap onto the chain? Did
you use an ordinary gas torch or something fancy, like a laser. I’ve
been told soldering chain cant be done with gas because the annealing
softens the chain too much. I’d appreciate your advise. Ian

What you have here is a Rhodium plated silver chain. It reacts to
the pickle just like you described.