hi folks, Use of a SARPIE PEN to aid in soldering findings to large
pieces of silver. One of the problems with soldering findings, such
as buckle loops and tangs, bola clips or pendant loops, to large
pieces of silver is that great care must be taken to prevent melting
the findings while trying to heat the large piece to solder
temperature. I imagine most of the jewelers subscribing to orchid
archives have learned to solder by trial and error after learning the
basics in a class. The following description describes how I use a
SHARPIE PEN when soldering the findings on the back of a large silver
pieces such as buckles, bola ties, pendants or conchos. I will use a
buckle as the example
Polish the back of the buckle. This step will make it much easier
to polish the back of
the finished item.
Clean the buckle with denatured alcohol to remove any oil from the
Use the SHARPIE PEN to mark several lines on the back of the
buckle. The purpose of this
step will be described later.
Coat the front and back of the buckle with a fire coat
preventative similar to Cupronil.
Separate two fire bricks by a distance slightly narrower that the
width of the buckle.
Place the buckle, with the back side up, on the fire bricks so that it is
supported on the
ends only. This will allow you to heat the buckle from the bottom ,
(front side). The torch
will be placed under the buckle with the flame pointed upwards. Note
the fire bricks should
be placed on a large soldering pad.
Add the findings to the back of the buckle.
This is where the SHARPIE PEN marks come into play. Heat the metal from the bottom side
until the marks disappear. The marks will burn away at a temperature slightly lower than the
melt point of medium solder. Once the SHARPIE PEN marks disappear switch the torch flame to
the back side of the buckle and continue to heat the buckle while playing the flame on the
loop and tang. The solder snips should flow shortly after the flame is moved to the back of
The use a SHARPIE PEN marks can aid the artist in determining when the metal is at soldering