Tuesday, January 8, 2013


I saw a post on Facebook in one of the jewelry groups I belong to.  It was a pair of earrings that had been torch fired with enamel and with silver.  It got me to thinking about silver on a penny - I wondered how that would look in place of the enamel - or maybe even with enamel.  No experiments are out of order in the workshop!

I wanted to try it but knew from my research on the subject of soldering silver to copper, sterling silver will not stick to copper unless there is flux and solder present.  But, I wondered about fine silver.  I know you can fuse fine silver to itself and wondered if it was the same with fine silver and copper.  I have no fine silver wire or sheet but I happen to have a package of precious metal clay that I got back in August of 2005.   Yes. Seriously.  I had never used it - I opened it and looked at it but then chickened out and put it all back.  Wrapped it up tight in three ziplock bags and the original protective bag it came in and put it away.  For all these years!  When I took it out this morning it was still moist.  Really!  I was so excited!

I experimented with three pennies - on the first penny I just put a lump of the clay on top of the penny and tried firing it from underneath, like I would with enamel, but even though the penny got red hot nothing happened to the lump 'o silver.  I applied the fire directly to the clay and lo and behold, it melted onto the penny.
Lump of clay - penny after being cleaned

With the second penny I crumbled some clay on top and then fired it. 
Crumbled on top - penny after being cleaned

Before firing the third penny I took a small chunk of clay, mixed it with water and made a slip of the silver; painted the penny and then fired it.  I LOVE how this one came out.  I like how it looks craggy and wrinkled.
Silver Clay mixed with water then fired

This is just the beginning of the experimentation.............

1 comment:

Shaiha said...

I just love how these turned out! Wonder what would happen if you used enamel also.