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Thread: Silver Soldering

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    LSemmens
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    Default Silver Soldering

    SWMBO has an item of jewellery that hangs on a bracelet. Problem is that the clip holding it keeps on spreading and allowing it to fall off. I know I can get a jeweller to fix it, but, can I solder it using a soldering iron and normal Pb based solder, or must I find some silver solder, and "braze" it like in bronze welding?

    p.s. MODS: Couldn't decide which forum to use, so feel free to move me.



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    I fix my wife's jewellery all the time with a soldering iron.
    I just go to masters or jay car they sell high silver fluxed solder, works a treat.
    no more loose clasps and charms falling off.

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    lsemmens (24-03-13),Tiny (24-03-13)

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    Crazy Diamond
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    As an educated metallurgist/dental technician (ran my own business for 25 years-now retired), I would not use Pb based solder on anything that comes into contact with Humans.
    I have soldered & welded metals from Gold to Stainless Steel.

    The best solder is the one that is indicated for the alloy you are soldering. Meaning it must reach liquidus state just before the parent metal or you end up with a blob of metal (SWMBO might not see the funny side of this result), if the gap between liquidus of the solder & the parent metal is too large you get a dry joint that will separate sooner than later.
    Having said that; you can get away with a silver & tin based solder to solder any metal, even Stainless, however the bond may not last more than a couple of years in corrosive conditions, as in contact with human sweat.

    You may be surprised at how little the Jeweler might charge for the fix/adjustment??
    Cheers, Tiny
    "You can lead a person to knowledge, but you can't make them think? If you're not part of the solution, you're part of the problem.
    The information is out there; you just have to let it in."

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    LSemmens
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    Thanks, Tiny, I live in the country and the nearest jeweller who repairs stuff on site is about 100Km away. The problem was rather urgent, this time, hence; After some more research I found some info, of which I was unaware, regarding the the melting point of silver solder compared to Lead based stuff. I always thought that the silver was way higher. You are correct about the issues relating to lead, in this case, it is a risk worth taking, so have used some of my normal rosin fluxed solder to fix it. I am an ex tech, so am familiar with sweating joints etc.

    The problem here was a medic alert medallion which was connected to a Pandora bracelet. The link, whilst substantial would spread, so a dob of solder would fix it, which is what I did. The joint, by the design of the link, will never be in direct contact with the skin. It is, sadly, a flaw of the design of most medic alert products, this is the second one she had had. The first was just a stainless steel bracelet and often used to fall off. I had no facility for soldering stainless and jewellers would not do it for us, we tried. This was a replacement, owing to changes in her conditions. We investigated all versions and settled on this as being the most robust, except it wasn't.
    Last edited by lsemmens; 24-03-13 at 11:07 PM. Reason: couple of typos

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