I soldered and quenched my metal. Then came disbelief as small cracks appeared from my hammer blows. Apparently Argentium is very fragile when it is red-hot, and moving it too soon can cause it to break and crack.
I thought to play around with fusing some metal shapes over the cracks, like band-aids. What did I have to loose at this point?
I had heard that Argentium fuses nicely, and wow, by nicely, they mean, like you dream about!
I used stainless steel wire to secure the metal, then just heated until it collapsed. When I saw a very slight glistening I took the heat off…it worked!
OK, at this point I did go and read the directions on Cynthia Eids Website, and yes, red-hot quenching is bad. After you take the heat off, give it a few seconds (which varies according to thickness). The length of time to wait is intuitive and takes practice. Learn using small works that you don’t have a lot of time into.
I then got bold and wired on four pieces of metal at once.
I fused each piece one at a time, let it cool a bit, turned the ring, then fused the next shape.
I did put My-T-Flux along the edges of all the pieces and didn’t bother with any pickling until all the pieces were fused to the ring shank.
I love fusing but always found it problematic with sterling because I would tend to overheat the pieces to get a full fuse.
Argentium offers a wider temperature range for fusing and does so at a cooler temp, which is why the ring shank did not slump.
Check out Ganoksin’sinstructions for working with Argentium.
Please comment below if you have any advice to give on working with Argentium fusing or any questions you might have regarding the process. I will try to help if I can.
Kind Regards, Holly