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Orca/EZ torch with atmospheric oxygen

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Author Topic: Orca/EZ torch with atmospheric oxygen  (Read 3274 times)
Carol M
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« Reply #15 on: September 12, 2013, 10:54:33 pm »

It does make a big difference as to how much heat is spread throughout the metal if it is flat or up just a wee bit off of the brick. I actually got an enameling wire grid on fire brick for doing really large bezels, 2"+ stone size, and it makes all the difference in the world how easy they go down on the back plate. At the same time I'm attaching the bezel all the other decoration is getting soldered on, the balls, the leaves, the twists, just by getting it up off the brick so that the heat can get under there helps it get even heat all over all the pieces of silver.
Yes, Argentium will solve some  if not all of these problems of firescale and tarnish but for some of us who have been doing Sterling silver work for decades it is just not practical to set up another bench with dedicated tooling for another metal, maybe on a hobby level it won't matter if the scrap and swarf is contaminated with a bit of odd metal but when one does quanity work it does matter. It means that the our scrap cannot be melted down and rolled or drawn out for reuse, it just complicates the whole matter.

Actually Bent, that's a 'common misconception'.  I don't know about all recovery companies but I do know that with RioGrande you just put your scrap Regular Sterling and scrap Argentium Sterling in the same scrap pile to get it recovered.

I no longer work in Sterling and sold what I had to other students at the school where I'm taking classes and I take my own charcoal block [on my little copper spinner] as well as my own MyTFlux to class [because it works best with Argentium Sterling] but other than that I use the regular school tools and pickle and tumbler and ultrasonic cleaner, and it hasn't had any adverse effect on my Argentium pieces.

There are some 'different procedures' you use with Argentium though like you don't coat the whole piece in flux, just the part you're soldering or fusing. 
Also, in some cases, like when you're fusing granulation or doing any fusing, you use diluted MyTFlux and let the flux dry so that the pieces stick in place.  That works well when fusing dapped wires or little balls on domed beads etc too.  I love that there's no solder to show up....because ......there's no solder involved.
I do like that fact when I anneal Argentium it doesn't turn dark...the more times you anneal it the whiter it gets.  I use magic marker to tell if 'it's annealed'.  When the magic marker marks's annealed.  EasyPeasy.
Anyway, with Sterling prices as low as they've been in years, now's a good time to 'give it a try'.
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Carol M
"Pursue Your Passions....."
"Imagine the Possibilities!"
"Mistakes are simply a form of practice!"
"People who never make mistakes.....probably never do anything!"

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