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  #1  
Old 2005-07-01, 10:25am
Anakin's Glass Eye's Avatar
Anakin's Glass Eye Anakin's Glass Eye is offline
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Default Silver Fuming Tutorial Please

Hi there. I'm looking for a little help or a good tutorial on silver fuming. How big a piece of silver do you need to use to keep it from melting? What kind of silver? How hot a flame to use? Oxidizing or reducing flame? Etc.?

Also, anybody doing gold fuming? Does it work the same? I have an unused wedding ring (14K gold) that I can use.

Any help is greatly appreciated.

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  #2  
Old 2005-07-01, 10:32am
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Here's how I do it...

*Obviously, do it with respiratory protection*

Silver:

I use silver powder that I get from work as a byproduct of developing film negatives. It's supposedly fine silver (according to my salesman) and it works well. A lot of people use fine silver bezel wire. A little goes a long ways.

Heat the piece to be fumed with a soft, fluffly flame. Heat the tip of a borosilicate rod and pick up the silver on the end. Change to a reducing flame, hold the silver in the flame about 1" from the tip of the torch. Let it start to melt. You should see the fumes start to develop. move the piece to be fumed into the flame towards the tip of the flame. The silver will start to deposit on the surface of the glass. You need to be careful not to burn your silver off. If you do, changing back to a reducing flame will usually bring it back.

Gold:

I use 24k gold bezel wire. I don't know if you can use 14k or not, as I've never tried it. Same process as fuming silver, but use an oxidizing flame for gold.

The trick is to fume both, which require different kinds of flames, and not ruin what you did before it. I wish I could tell you a trick to do that, but it's just one of those things you have to practice and see how much flame to use.
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  #3  
Old 2005-07-01, 10:21pm
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PyroChixRock PyroChixRock is offline
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22k does work the best. The wire is a ton more expensive then going to a coin shop and asking them for a silver coin, usually runs about $8 for a coin bigger then a silver dollar (ounce) and lasts a few years unless you drop it all the time. Same with gold, but a bit more spendy, go to the coin shop and ask what their prices are. Sometimes they have little gold pebbles if you don’t want to buy a whole coin. A coin about the size of a nickel is around $40.

With the silver coins, heat and hammer them to make cutting it off easier. Gold is so soft you don't need to flatten it if you don't want to, but you can cut smaller pieces that way. Don't heat gold to hammer it.

As for fuming, depends on what torch you use? Use a boro punty to stick it to or even quartz if you can find some. Chase the gold around, don’t let it fall off the punty! Silver won’t move around like the gold does on the rod, but it will sink in if you’re using the wrong flame.


There's an faq on fuming at the gldg, here

http://www.thegldg.com/forum/showthread.php?t=121

but I don't think you can view that section without being logged in.
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  #4  
Old 2009-11-20, 8:01pm
goldbaker88 goldbaker88 is offline
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Thank you so much for this.
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  #5  
Old 2011-03-10, 12:54am
LarryCockshutt LarryCockshutt is offline
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Default My wedding ring is an 14k white gold, Can anyone help me?

My wedding ring is an 14k white gold, 2.0carat diamond wedding set. The center stone is .5carat and the rest of the diamonds make up the other 1.5carats. The ring is G color and a SV1 clarity. Can anyone help me?
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  #6  
Old 2011-03-10, 1:11am
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I learned how to do it with Andrea's moth wing tut.
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  #7  
Old 2011-03-12, 6:17pm
MichaelDukhovn MichaelDukhovn is offline
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Default My wedding ring is an 14k white gold, Can anyone help me?

What exactly is your question?
You've given us a detailed description of your wedding ring, but apart from asking for help for only God knows what, there's no actual question listed...
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  #8  
Old 2011-03-19, 1:21pm
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Mitosis Glass Mitosis Glass is offline
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I've been trying to figure this out myself! The fuming, not the wedding ring issue, lol. Thank you to everyone who posted!
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  #9  
Old 2011-03-19, 3:47pm
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Frit Diva Frit Diva is offline
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I have been fuming with both gold and silver for 18 years, and I've never had even a headache from fuming. This is because I have GOOD ventilation and I NEVER use anything that is not pure gold or silver. What Cosmo said is exactly what I do, and with a small amount of practice you can do that same. Fuming is not a difficult technique, it just takes practice. But please, NEVER heat impure metal to the point of vaporizing, it can be very dangerous. "Pure" means fine silver (NOT sterling) and 24K gold.

Just for clarification ~ most silver coins are not fine silver, they are sterling at best (92.5% silver), probably more are "coin silver" which is about 80-90% silver, the rest unknown, lower melting alloys which help the silver to melt and behave better, but have unknown health side effects. Certainly brass and copper, possibly cadmium, zinc, and who knows what else. Dental silver is bonded with mercury, as is dental gold. Same with gold, 24K gold is the only pure source of gold. 22K is close to being pure gold, but it isn't pure. If you feel that 22K adheres better, ask yourself what might have beem been added to change the properties of the metal.

PLEASE DON'T FUME WITH IMPURE METALS! It's very unsafe

Vapors readily cross the blood/brain barrier, meaning they go in your respiratory tract and directly to your brain without benefit of digestive filtering. Please do not take chances!


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Climbing down off my soapbox now! I just want all our glassy folks to be safe...
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  #10  
Old 2011-05-23, 9:10am
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FishmanK FishmanK is offline
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I have also been silver fuming for many years
I'd add:
a small amount of silver caught on the end of a glass rod handle is all that is required (2 - 6mm ball)
the key is to not over heat the silver
it sparkles in the flame as the fuming effect peaks
pulling it in and out of the flame makes the most fuming
catching the fumes downstream on your piece is most even if done with a sawing like motion in the back of the flame
a neutral flame is fine

A note about silver:
"fine" silver works best (99.9% pure)
"wire" or other "things" made of silver can be sold for any amount desired.
Try to locate a "troy ounce of fine silver" this commodity is legally sold at controlled rates set by the market and is always more reasonably priced (current price today: @$35 per: http://money.cnn.com/data/commodities/ )
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