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Subject: Re: Fusing vs Soldering

Seperating disks are NOT, repeat, NOT those metal saws. Those
things would be quite dangerous to use this way, since if they
catch, you could easily do major damage. Saws of that sort are
much safer in equipment like a lathe, where the workpiece is fed
mechanically into the saw, or in something like the “jumpringer”,
where the saw is running in a protective guard, and the
handpiece on a track to guide the saw. Again, let me state,
please be very careful before you attempt to run these little
thin metal circular saw blades “freehand”. They are one of the
more dangerous things you can run in a flex shaft.

The seperating disks I was referring to are also not the thicker
"red flash" or similar commonly seen ones, which are usually
about a half to three quarters millimeter thick or a bit more.
Those things, while they’d work on larger jump rings, heat things
up a lot due to how much metal they remove, and they’re taking a
really big slice too.

What I’m talking about are very thin abrasive disks. NOT
sandpaper disks. These are a bonded silicon carbide disk. Very
sharp for abrasive disks, and they break easily. And run a full
speed, they can nick your finger pretty well too. but with some
practice, I find them controllable, and highly effective. The
ones I use are usually the thinner type, which is .006 inches
thick. Thats about like a 6/0 sawblade, I think. They also make
one thats .009 ", thick, or 50% thicker. Still quite thin, and a
good deal more durable. These things (as did so many of our
abrasive disks) originated in the dental industry, where I think
they were called super flexible discs or something. An odd
name, considering how easly they break when you flex one by
accident. The full container size of these is a little red
plastic box of 100, which sells for about 30-35 dollars. Many
tools dealers who carry them also sell smaller quantities.
They’ve only made it to the tool dealers inventories in the last
few years. Not all the catalogs show them. The 1998 Rio tools
catalog has the .009 ones as the first item on the top of the
page on page 301. They may have the .006 discs too, but don’t
show them. However, at 23 bucks for 50 disks, they are a good
deal more expensive than some other sources. Swest sells the
thinner disks in a pack of 100, for under 40 bucks (last time I
got them, at any rate). Their stock number is 237-273. My
Gesswein 1996-7 catalog shows the .009 disks as stock number
845-1050 (calling them ultrathin), and I’m sure they must carry
the thinner ones too (Elaine?)

A final note, please remember that I mentioned protective
eyewear with these. They DO break easily.

Hope this helps.

Peter Rowe

Dear Felicity, I tried using the “sandpaper” discs, found it
clumsy. So now, I just wrap my rings on dowel of appropriate
size and wrap with masking tape. Slide the coil off and slip it
onto the other end as if screwing on a lid. A little beeswax or
other wax will help. Draw a straight line down the coil and cut
with a very fine sawblade 6/0 or so right into the dowel. I
usually don’t make my coils longer than an inch or so. But I get
a clean cut, easy to butt and fuse. Pat in frosty Penna.