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Vent holes in hollow earrings


#1

I’m fabricating hollow earrings from sheet. On the first one, I
drilled a vent hole that’s near the post and it just looks odd on
the finished earring. I thought about gypsy setting a stone, but the
metal is too thin in an earring. How can vent holes be made as a
design element on thin hollow objects? Any ideas would be greatly
appreciated.

Jamie


#2
How can vent holes be made as a design element on thin hollow
objects? Any ideas would be greatly appreciated. 

If you can make the earring post the last soldering job on the piece,
you just solder the vent hole closed with the pad on the earring post
or a blob of solder at the end of the post. It is only enclosed
objects with no means for heated air to escape that can cause a
problem. Or, you can put solder on a ball of silver put that over the
hole and heat till soldered. I have done this many times.

Richard Hart G.
Denver, Co.


#3

i wouldnt advice making vent holes on hollow pieces, mainly because
bigs can get trapped inside and then the piece is ruined.


#4

Hello Jamie, A hole in a hollow piece is to vent the gases when the
piece is being heated. Once it is hot, you no longer need the hole.
The last time you need to heat the piece, plug the hole. Always drill
a small hole before you heat a hollow piece to allow the expanding
air to escape. When you are thru soldering, fill it back in.

Have fun.
Tom Arnold


#5

I had a similar problem with a pair of earring I made, the one hole
looked out of place. I decided to drill more holes and use the them
to design different constellations. Each hole was a star in the
constellation. Sometimes I gypsy set stones with that design when I
use thicker sheet metal and it looks really cool. Hope that might
help.


#6

I saw around mine to make them into shapes so they become a design
element.

Sharon
#1 Forge rule- Don’t Touch The Hot Part!


#7
I'm fabricating hollow earrings from sheet. On the first one, I
drilled a vent hole that's near the post and it just looks odd on
the finished earring. I thought about gypsy setting a stone, but
the metal is too thin in an earring. How can vent holes be made as
a design element on thin hollow objects? 

why don’t you cut that hole into a shape…heart or perhaps a "Logo"
element like a letter “A”. Could you work that into the metal
earlier in fabrication process so it is easier to do something more
intricate? Thats why I suggested a heart shape…easy to sculpt a
heart from a hole with a small tapered reamer. Also that "hole"
could be a saw cut, or in the middle of your quality mark/ makers
mark; it would be less noticeable there.

April Bower, in sunny AZ where the desert is now a colorful garden


#8

Recently went to a soldering class as although I’d been making for
years I always felt my soldering was a not entirely reliable area. I
discovered at this class that it is quite possible to make a hollow
object such as an earring without a vent hole, against everything I
had been taught. You just have to make sure that the solder runs
first time - i.e. everything exceptionally clean, fitting perfectly
and good fluxing (all the standard rules of soldering). In this way I
made a hollow cylinder and even soldered on the pin without any vent
at all and it worked perfectly, but as I say it has to work first
time, trying to correct bits where the solder hasn’t run probably
won’t work as you’ll have cleaned off the oxides with pickle, the
object will have liquid inside and the steam may well explode the
object.

Good luck
Hilary
UK


#9

Bonjour Jamie,

I sometimes punch, chase or saw pierce a small pattern around or in
place of a vent hole. The difficulty being the small size of earrings
it doesn’t leave you a lot of freedom… but maybe you could use this
pattern in some sort of signature.

Juliette Arda


#10

Why do you put holes in the hollow pieces in the first place. I work
on hollow earrings and the like, all the time and prefer them to NOT
have holes. When you put holes in a hollow piece you invite moisture
as well as “crap” to enter and live inside the piece. The problem is
when the piece is heated and then dropped into liquid, whether it be
pickle, or the ultrasonic bath, it will suck the liquid inside of the
piece, then when it is later heated, even though it seems to be dry,
If you crank the heat too fast you will “pop” the piece you worked so
hard on. If you can’t get around the need for a hole you can then
close it up later. Gradual heating and/or cooling of the piece will
prevent such rapid expansion of gasses as to cause the piece to
burst, then once it is up to temp, I would then close up the hole
with a solid ball of metal tinned with solder, and let it cool on
it’s own. I was taught this trick at FIT in NY and have been using it
successfully (or luckily depending on what side of the bench you
sit.) since 1996. If you think you need a hole and it will not
interfere with your design then go ahead and punch until your heart
is content.

FWIW
Timothy Goodwin
Glenn’s Jewelry and loan.


#11

A very small disk soldered to the area where you plan on drilling
the vent hole, then your hallmark stamped onto the disk. It is very
elegant and gives a “finished” look.


#12

Seams can be soldered completely closed, and further soldering is
safe provided the item is never dunked in water or pickle until all
soldering is completed. The problem is not air expanding inside the
hollow piece, the real problem is traces of moisture entering the
hollow cavity through a pinhole or gap in the seam. This can happen
between soldering steps, or years later after being worn as
jewellery. Hollow items are often made of very thin metal and
cleaning up a soldered seam may expose tiny gaps.

Heating a completely sealed hollow item is always risky. A smear of
moisture inside will instantly turn into superheated steam and
things will go ‘POP’. Either heat very slowly and cautiously looking
for a tiny hissing jet, or drill a breather hole first and then
solder it closed again when the job is done.

Problems with having a permanent breather hole: It is difficult to
make sure the inside is free of acid and completely dry after
pickling and washing; It is un-hygenic because dirt and moisture can
fester inside the cavity, specially if the breather hole lies
against the skin.

Alastair


#13

good luck!!!

oh and lastly, make sure that you position the piece so that if it
does happen to explode, it will fly apart side to side rather than
into your face. only through extraordinary luck have i managed to
forego that last lesson.

best,
hilary
www.hilarypark.com


#14
A hole in a hollow piece is to vent the gases when the piece is
being heated. Once it is hot, you no longer need the hole. The last
time you need to heat the piece, plug the hole. 

Duh. This makes perfect sense. Thanks for waking me up.

Jamie