The piece is up to 87 solder joints, only 13 to go for 100!
I soldered on 28 wires on to the dome, with the $10.00 torch, just to further try to convince even the staunchest believer in using the three grades (hard, medium, and easy) of solder, that only using hard solder not only the best way to solder a silver project, but the only way. Remember, the dome is made of 46 square wires and one twisted wire, the two bezels, and all 28 wires were solder on with hard solder. No props, no magic, no binding wire, no hat trick, just the fact tha hard solder is easier to use. My only question of all those still sticking to the step method is just where on this project would you use begin to use medium, and then easy?
Remember, also this piece was began as an answer to several posts and questions. One included the following: "if the only thing you know about solder and soldering comes from Mr Norris, you will be in deep, Deep, DEEP, doo doo." I began this project to show how full of doo, doo, that doo doo for brains knows about soldering. Then this was included in another post by someone obviously not an experienced silversmith: "Surely you're not claiming that ***anything*** that can be made with all three grades of solder can be made with one grade? Do you really think students in a more experimental school would be able to get by with one grade?" Then this person drew a dome, with two bezels on it and wondered if this could be done with one solder. Therefore, I began to make this piece of crap to prove, yes, any thing can be made with one grade of solder! That is if you have any basic knowledge of how to use a torch correctly. I tried to offer these two people my Online Beginning Class at even a reduced price, but of course they refused. They just know that it can not be done! I have not pickled this piece to make sure that all the wires making up the dome would show.
After this piece was finished I was going to run over it with the car, and then repair it. Something that would have been next to impossible if the "three step method" had been use.
But, now I am beginning to like this arsty craftsy piece! I wish I was a student in one of those "experiemental schools"! Besides, I think this thing would have given me a flat tire! I have decided to call it the "Universe of the Silversmith".
Oh, just to make it a little harder I soldered on four copper wires, too.
Look close, too, there are a few surprises on the back that I have not show you yet! But, I will begin to give you hints. Look at the four smaller openings in the square wire. There are four wires coming out of these open from the back of the dome, so they appear to be floating through the holes.
Universe of the Silversmith
I decided to curl each wire into a spring, and because I love turquoise, I chose two pieces for the top stones.
I put a little bit of polish on it, just to show that even with all this soldering, hard solder does not pit. I will put a better polish on it when I am through soldering on to the piece.
The Back of the
Universe of the Silversmith
I put a few surprises on the back!
Just for those that still bitterly cling to their beliefs that using all hard solder is just impossible.
1. A bezel for a stone.
2. Four wires that begin on the back and travel through the sheet of square wires to the top.
The square wires also had two solder joints on them to make the sharp bends. Again, I have not polish them show that you could see the joints. Later they will be polished so that no one will be able to see the joints. There will be no pits as you get with easy and medium.
Would like detailed information and access to many, many photos on how the wires were soldered on, using nothing to hold each on up, no third hands, no bailing wire (I never use bailing wire!) nothing but just good hard solder to hold every thing in place? Well that is not completey true.I did use one little silversmithing trick.
I envite you to join the Silversmithing list for this information, photos, and much, much more.
Please visit Silver Hard Solder Challenge 2 for photos of another small experiment in using nothing but hard solder!
You will also find 10 good reasons to use only hard solder for your fabricating of sterling silver projects.
The challenge is to give me two good reasons to use the three step method. Just two!
If you do not feel you can use a torch good enough to only use hard solder for all your silver fabricating, I encourage you to join my Online Beginning Silversmithing Class. I can teach you how using hard solder not only makes better jewelry, but is easier to use than the step method that has been taught for so many years.