1: I KNOW that fine silver bezels melt easily (left) so why did I put my torch directly onto the bezel to melt the solder? Well, that’s because I’m super impatient of course! I just couldn’t wait to get that post on the back so I could pop in my malachite cab and wear my new earrings around the house. (Actually, if you follow me on Facebook you’ll know it was more like – I just couldn’t wait to pop in my malachite can, take a couple thousand photos to post on Facebook, and then wear them around the house). Well that didn’t happen. Not with this guy anyway. If you solder, you probably already know not to place your torch flame directly onto the bezel, and if your new to soldering, well now you know. But hey, I knew it too! Make sure you turn your knowledge into action so you don’t have a moment of silence and possibly shed a tear when your almost finished earring dies right in front of you. *sniff*
2: I was using 12 gauge (or the closest thing to it) beaded Sterling wire and after I soldered the joint I went to shape it with my pliers before hammering it around the mandrel. And it broke! Not at the joint, but in between two of the beads. I usually use pliers to straighten out the D-curve a bit before I hammer the ring on the mandrel, but that’s when the ring broke. I still use the pliers for round and square wire, but I’ve stopped using it for the beaded wire. My original thinking was that by using the pliers I would decrease the tension on the joint before I hammered the ring on the mandrel, but it looks like I created more tension in another area and caused it to break. Lesson learned. Another tear shed. Another piece of experience for the toolbox. Another couple cuss words given life. Oh well…in order to get better we must learn from experience, but maybe you can learn from my mistakes instead.
Do you have any soldering tips and tricks? I’d love to hear them!