At the end of this post, watch her demonstrate how easy it is to solder rings and tube settings together. She also shows how to set a CZ inside a tube setting.
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This is a very versatile method. Eva says, “I’ve taught this technique as a ring, a bracelet and a pendant, too. There are a lot of design possibilities just soldering jump rings together.”
To try this technique, you’ll need 16-18-gauge sterling silver jump rings in a variety of sizes. You can purchase premade silver jump rings or use 16 or 18-gauge round sterling silver wire with jump ring making pliers to make your own. You’ll also need tube bezel settings & CZ loose stones, along with a basic soldering set-up and selection of jewelry findings, including ear wires.
Eva’s Rules of Soldering
- Arrange the design on a solderite or charcoal board. The metal must touch (no gaps). Rings should touch in at least two places but three is better to give your piece more stability.
- The metal must be clean with no fire scale. Pickle often. Hint: Twist rings on a length of copper wire to make it easier to fish them out of the pickle.
- Use flux to keep the metal clean and help solder flow.
- Hammer wire solder flat to keep it from rolling.
- A little bit of solder goes a long way. Use less than you think you need.
- Solder flows toward heat. Heat the metal, not the solder.
- In order to avoid melting the silver, place solder under the join, and use the heat to draw the solder up the join.
- Silver has a relatively low melting temperature. When it begins to glow red, you are very close to melting temperature.
- Soldering is 95% set up and 5% torching. Be patient.
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