Something I can actually help with, yay!
Palladium's melting range is approximately 1340-1400 degrees
Celcius which is lower than platinum, so I'm assuming that my oxy-
propane torch will cope with soldering it. Am I correct to assume
Acetylene isn’t recommended as like platinum palladium has a habit
of absorbing carbon to its detriment (Hydrogen, and oxygen as well).
I use Propane/Oxy with a slightly reducing flame for soldering,
followed with a neutral flame to clean up the blue/purple oxidation
that is formed when palladium is heated.
Would I need a flux to solder palladium and if so which flux would
No flux required, but you will have to get palladium specific
solders, these like platinum solders are available in plumb and not
plumb. I prefer plumb, costs a little more but the downstream hassles
make it worth the slight added expense.
For polishing, I have platinum blue and platinum white compounds.
Will those suffice for finishing palladium?
As the platinum guild says (with some paraphrasing) palladium: it’s
not difficult it’s just different! I might add I find it easier to
work than platinum, but that might just be a factor of my not having
done as much platinum work as palladium work to date.
Some other pointers, try to keep separate tools if you are going to
be working regularly as this will keep contamination down, keep your
lammels separate (this is mainly for the convenience of the
refiners), you will need a platinum soldering board/pad, you might
also have to get separate buffing wheels again if this is going to be
an ongoing thing, other wise use felt.cotton wheel tips for your
flexshaft to polish with.
And yes read the stuff in the Bench guides it’s mostly what I’ve
said above, but I’m sure that with pictures beside the words things
will be all the clearer!
link to the palladium articles…
Cheers, Thomas Janstrom.