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Showing posts from February, 2015

Don't Buy A New Soldering Block Clean Your Old One!

If you solder as part of your jewellery making then like me you probably have a selection of soldering boards. The good old asbestos-substitute, the honeycomb board and the fibre brick. I've yet to try a charcoal soldering block strangely - I've looked at them a lot but never clicked the buy button as yet.... There's nothing nicer than a brand new, clean, smooth soldering board to use. Well there is, lots of things are nicer, but you know what I mean!


My collection of soldering boards
Before I tried the honeycomb boards which I tend to use a lot now I would use the asbestos-substitute boards most of the time. After a while you inevitably gets areas of the board covered with excess flux which forms a glass-like layer on the board once it's cooled and if heated a lot will start to eat into the board. Your metal will also stick to any flux you accidently put it on top of during soldering sometimes leaving blobs of flux to clean off in tricky areas. So you avoid that area…

Using My Scrap Sterling Silver and Bronze To Make Pod Earrings

It's very satisfying to use your scrap metal and make something you really like with it. I normally save my sterling silver scrap in a pot that I then send off when it's full for recycling in return for a nice amount of cash. But sometimes I like to get out my torch and just melt stuff and I've never done pods before......
Sterling silver and bronze will melt easily and form pebbles, sometimes lovely and round in shape and sometimes a bit more organic and freeform. Regardless of their shape you then have a piece of metal you can do things with. I watched a video by Janice Berkebile recently where she made some pod earrings which is what inspired me to play around with some of my scrap silver and bronze.


Here are some bronze pebbles that I've hammered to flatten them slightly before putting them through the rolling mill {that soldering block looks disgusting doesn't it?!}

A bronze pebble about to be squished. Bronze is a harder metal than silver and copper so needs…

Hoop-La! My Love Of Hoop Earrings

Last week I have been mostly making.... hoop earrings with post fitting. Strangely I've never made this type of hoop before but it is a style I like to wear myself so I thought it was about time I made some!

I've made the hoops in sterling silver, copper and bronze using wire from 2.6mm {10g} up to 3.5mm {7g} and sterling silver earring posts with the pad. I use the posts with the pad attached as I find it easier to solder them to other things that way. The posts sit nicely in a hole in my honeycomb soldering board then I can position the end of the hoop using a third hand on top of the pad part for soldering. I then trim, file and sand the ends to remove any of the pad part that overhangs the end of the hoop. I do have some of the sterling posts without the pad which I have used before but being a bit shaky of hand at times I'm going to need to practice a bit more before using them on the hoops.

Bronze wire hoops with swirly texture pattern.
Apart from the thing I have a…