With the high cost of silver, which does not appear ready to go back
down any time soon, I have been working more and more with copper,
to learn new techniques and practice on, and to incorporate into
jewelry pieces. However, copper and silver (sterling and Argentum)
are not identical and possess different properties - they feel
different when working them.
I was wondering, which metal possesses superior properties, i.e.,
which is more malleable, is more ductile, etc. Sterling silver or
copper. To me, freshly annealed copper works like warm butter, but it
work hardens quickly becoming stiff again in very little time.
Silver, on the other hand, seems to compress and stretch better.
When hammering out a synclastic (or antisyclastic) bracelet, copper
has a lot of metal on the inside of the curve that just folds over
when hammering (if you get what I mean by this), whereas sterling
silver seems to stay smooth on the inside of the curve, as if the
metal compresses and there is no extra metal to fold over.
Thank you in advance for your insight. Have a great holiday and a
very Merry Christmas.