General information about the Site

This lapidary and jewelry design community forum is dedicated to the novice, more experienced, and expert lapidaries and jewelry designers.

Forum cabochon in the Spotlight

Bob ( bobby1 ) shared this unknown druzy

Forum Jewelry Design in the Spotlight

John shared this beautiful pair of amethyst cufflinks

Forum Jewelry Design in the Spotlight

Mick shared this beautiful Malachite Wrasse carving

Intarsias / Composites / Bead Making in the Spotlight

Kent shared this really nice Imperial Jasper pendant

Lapidary Related and Forum Member Shop Links

Brian Ababurko Silversmithing Classes / Rock Rollers Club

Dons Lapidary Arts

Idaho Rock Shop

Rare Rocks and Gems

Coyote Rainbow

Lightninghorse

Rocky Treasures

Talking Rocks

Fine Gem Designs

Idaho Rockman

Fine Woodwork and Lapidary

Darkstar Jewelry

DLC Gems

Teton Art Gallery

Art Cut Gems

Woman With A Torch

Lapidary Buy and Sell (Facebook Group)

Lapidary (Facebook Group)

Lapidary Equipment Marketplace (Facebook Group)


Lapidary / Gemstone Community Forum
December 13, 2018, 05:02:17 am
Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.

Login with username, password and session length
News:
 
  Home Help Search Login Register  

Soldering/flux question

Pages: [1] 2  All   Go Down
  Print  
Author Topic: Soldering/flux question  (Read 1326 times)
bigdogpc
Guest
« on: May 26, 2010, 05:43:45 am »

OK, ignorance is not always bliss.  I have ordered the chip silver, hard solder.  I also ordered a liquid flux.  I ordered from Rio Grande in case anyone is curious.  I am ASSUMING I am on the right track.  My efforts to date have been lots of melted wire, one singed beard (I am now beardless in self defence) and a few "OH DARNS" ( yea, right).  I have lugged around a small roll of silver solder that was used to attach carbide tips to steel blanks for about 25 years or so.  I assumed this was silver solder since that is what I was told it was.  I now suspect it is something other than what I need.  I have been using Borax mixed with water to form a paste which I apply lightly.  My torch is Mapp gas, self igniting head.  The question:  Have I been using the wrong solder and flux?  Thanks.
Report Spam   Logged

hulagrub
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Gender: Male
Posts: 6752


When you cultivate man, you turn up all the clods


« Reply #1 on: May 26, 2010, 06:40:01 am »

bigdog, I don't think the industrial type stick solder is appropiate for silverworking. I used that back in the 70's for the plumbing on government housing, and it seemed like it had a higher temperature rate than the solder for smithing.
Report Spam   Logged

Dave, a certified Rockaholic

thewrightthings
Guest
« Reply #2 on: May 26, 2010, 07:33:11 am »

Bigdog, The Rio solder is a good start, but you may also want to get some med. and soft, as well.  The borax mix is good, as is the Rio flux.  Does the torch have a small enough flame?  Judging by the missing beard, I might guess, "NO".  Also, while MAPP gas works, I prefer acetylene or A0, or PO.
Report Spam   Logged
bobby1
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Gender: Male
Posts: 3606


« Reply #3 on: May 26, 2010, 08:42:36 am »

Most of the generic silver solders from that era and before had cadmium as a component to aid in the flow of the solder. Technically, the process of silver soldering is called brazing in the welding industry and silver soldering in the jewelry industry so you will see it listed as brazing rod. Molten cadmium fumes are poisionous and cause nerve damage. As a result, today it is a very uncommon component in silver solder.
I prefer the borax/water mix with a little ethyl (denatured) alcohol added as a flux because you can coat the whole piece  and prevent (or at least minimize) most of the oxidation and fire scale as you are heating the piece. I only use medium solder in all of my work. Each time you heat solder it vaporizes the zinc (another component added to silver solder to make it flow better at a lower temperature) and as a result that solder join's melting point shifts upward towards the next higher type of solder.
I've heard that a product called Firescoff is touted to be a great flux but it is very expensive to use.
A torch with a broad flame is very difficult to use without melting small cross section metal such as bezel strips. A high temperature burning flame (acetylene is one of the highest temperature flames) with a small size flame allows better heat control of where the flame is aimed. I use an oxy/acetylene unit with the Smith torch setup. This system is more expensive than most of the cannister torches but the results are far better. If you can afford this unit you will only have to buy your torch once.
Bob
Report Spam   Logged

hulagrub
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Gender: Male
Posts: 6752


When you cultivate man, you turn up all the clods


« Reply #4 on: May 26, 2010, 10:51:12 am »

Bob, About what is your ratio of water to borax? And then the alcohol to it?
Report Spam   Logged

Dave, a certified Rockaholic

bobby1
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Gender: Male
Posts: 3606


« Reply #5 on: May 26, 2010, 11:15:43 pm »

Dave,
I mix the borax paste with hot water in a baby food jar and shake it up. I strive  for a mixture that is like a light cream (like for your coffee). If it is the small baby food jar I add about two teaspoons of ethyl alcohol (denatured alcohol). I don't use rubbing alcohol (methyl alcohol) because the fumes are toxic. I cut the handle off a small artists paint  brush so that it will barely fit into the jar with the lid on (so it doesn'y get contaminated and I can always find it). As the mixture drys out over time I remix more water and alcohol into it.
When I'm getting ready to solder my piece I coat the whole surface with the paste and heat it gently until the paste dries out. As you are heating the paste if it shrinks into wet puddles real quickly this is an indication that the piece is not clean and it possibly has some oils on it. Here I rewash the piece, recoat it and reheat it. You are striving for a continuous white coating where ever you have applied the paste. When the paste is dry I then apply the solder pallion at the points that I want to join. By drying out the paste it keeps the solder from jumping around.
Bob
Report Spam   Logged

bobby1
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Gender: Male
Posts: 3606


« Reply #6 on: May 26, 2010, 11:24:25 pm »

I forgot to add that I use the denatured alcohol for a lot of the cleaning steps in silver jewelry making as well as a solvent  to remove any dop wax left on my cabs, OH, and as a fuel for my alcohol lamp that I use as a heat source for all of my dopping activities. It is a rather innocous solvent to use around the shop  for many uses. I rather like the smell of vodka as I am working! Denatured alcohl is ethyl (drinking kind) alcohol with a small bit of methyl alcohol added to make it undrinkable (poisonous). You can get a gallon of it at the hardware for a few dollars.
Bob
Report Spam   Logged

hulagrub
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Gender: Male
Posts: 6752


When you cultivate man, you turn up all the clods


« Reply #7 on: May 27, 2010, 05:41:32 am »

Bob, a big Thanks!
Report Spam   Logged

Dave, a certified Rockaholic

ScarlettoSara
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Gender: Female
Posts: 8958


Somewhere over the rainbow... way up high


« Reply #8 on: May 27, 2010, 07:16:35 am »

Lord Lord Bob... I can see me now. Kinda like Justin Wilson the Cooking Cajun.
Remember he used to have a big jug of wine sitting on the counter? And he would pour a little in the pot and take a little sip for himself at same time.
I will get a big bottle of Vodka and set down on my workbench. Put a little in my flux and a little in my glass and see which one of us lasts the longest.
I will call myself The Jewel of Russia:) LOLOL when I am conscious that is:)
...All day long I'd bidi-bidi-bum...........
Good stuff Bob.. thanks for the tips:)
Report Spam   Logged

"I tramp a perpetual journey.”
― Walt Whitman, Song of Myself
hulagrub
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Gender: Male
Posts: 6752


When you cultivate man, you turn up all the clods


« Reply #9 on: May 27, 2010, 10:06:40 am »

Geez Sara, You are such a hoot! Need to call you Cherokeeowl.
Report Spam   Logged

Dave, a certified Rockaholic

Taogem
Administrator
Hero Member
*****
Online Online

Gender: Male
Posts: 12308



« Reply #10 on: May 27, 2010, 04:52:58 pm »

I can see me now. Kinda like Justin Wilson the Cooking Cajun.

Too funny !  saved4
Report Spam   Logged

Rockoteer
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Gender: Male
Posts: 3699



« Reply #11 on: May 27, 2010, 05:21:30 pm »


Sara...The Cooking Cajun? I think I remember him. You are a hoot fer shur. Stop .. your killing me.  I get to laughing so hard I ...... another time.

This soldering is quite complicated.  If I wanted to save all these posts to use for reference, how would be the best way?

TOG  (I guess this is going to stick as my moniker Sara)
Report Spam   Logged

-Gary

Of all the things I've lost..I miss my mind the most.

Whether you think you can, or you think you can't, you're probably right.
Michael
Guest
« Reply #12 on: May 28, 2010, 05:32:29 pm »

lets see,,,,,,, both alcohols evaporate at different temperatures so we boil off the one and have the other left. mmmmmm
Dont try this at home kids.  lol
Report Spam   Logged
ScarlettoSara
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Gender: Female
Posts: 8958


Somewhere over the rainbow... way up high


« Reply #13 on: May 28, 2010, 09:41:05 pm »

LOL MIchael:)

Can you copy and paste into word to save the posts you want to keep TOG?
Report Spam   Logged

"I tramp a perpetual journey.”
― Walt Whitman, Song of Myself
Steve
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Gender: Male
Posts: 3441



« Reply #14 on: May 29, 2010, 03:12:08 pm »

Yes you can.  All you do is left click and run a block of what you want, right click  and copy and then right click and paste it into a word document.  Really simple.

I do it the other way around when I'm writing a tutorial.  I do it in Word first, edit it to my satisfaction then cut and paste.
Report Spam   Logged

Steve.............The Silver Fox

My Photo Bucket site:  http://s743.photobucket.com/user/sferenz/library/?sort=3&page=1



Pages: [1] 2  All   Go Up
  Print  
 
Jump to:  

Bookmark this site! | Upgrade This Forum
SMF For Free - Create your own Forum | Buy traffic for your forum/website

Powered by SMF | SMF © 2016, Simple Machines
Privacy Policy