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Soldering: getting small parts to stay in place?


#1

About a month ago there was a discussion of how to hold small
parts down or in place when soldering. Suggestions were to use
wax and dental plaster (thanks Jeffrey Everett). I was looking
at the Rio tool catalog today (p. 180) which has several supplies
related to the soldering issue. Has anyone tried the soldering
investment? Is it pretty thick when mixed up so that it’s easy
to bury the small parts in it? Would garnet sand be another
alternative or is it problematic for silver soldering because it
protects parts from heat? Thanks in advance. rd


#2

About a month ago there was a discussion of how to hold small
parts down or in place when soldering. Suggestions were to use
wax and dental plaster (thanks Jeffrey Everett). I was looking
at the Rio tool catalog today (p. 180) which has several supplies
related to the soldering issue. Has anyone tried the soldering
investment? Is it pretty thick when mixed up so that it’s easy
to bury the small parts in it? Would garnet sand be another
alternative or is it problematic for silver soldering because it
protects parts from heat? Thanks in advance. rd


#3

Hi,

Get a dental supply catalog. They have an array of soldering
investments. In a pinch you can mix your casting investment
with hot water, using, of course a thicker mix. I guarantee it
will set up quicker and hold the pieces.

Good Luck,

Skip

                                  Skip Meister
                                NRA Endowment and
                                   Instructor
                                @Skip_Meister
                                06/18/9700:11:04

#4

Hi rd,

Since nearly all my bench work is working with small parts and
silver, I can suggest that if you’re using a porous block you
try jewelers’ pins. These are u-shaped two-point pins which are
really great for anchoring pieces in one place. I widen two of
them and place them opposite each other for holding ring shanks
up or down to add bezels, heads, and decorative accents. If you
coat both pieces with flux and line them up where you want them
then gently pass a low flame over from a distance a couple of
times (not enough to heat the metal) the pieces will adhere so
that you can place your solder and come back with a hot flame
and nothing will move. I also use my third hand a lot for those
times when you just can’t get it right.

I bought garnet sand from Rio over a year ago and it’s still
sitting on the shelf - haven’t found an occasion to use it.

Nina


#5

We use very fine iron filings sometimes. Machine shops will have
these filings and may give them to you gratis. We put the filings
in an old aluminum ice cube tray, (don’t ask me why we use an ice
cube tray, tradition I suppose…) about 1-2 " deep. Protect the
items with a denatured alcohol/borax solution, and place the work
to be soldered within ( not completely) the filings to get the
parts where you want them. After soldering, make sure you remove
ALL of the fillings before pickling .