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Jewelry Metals and Solders


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gold rings with gemstones Studio jewelers work with many different kinds of metals, including precious metals, base metals, alloys, and solders.

Precious metals include gold, silver, and platinum. These metals are nonferrous, which means they do not contain iron. Precious metals are ideal for bending, shaping, and polishing; however, because they are so soft in their pure state, precious metals are often combined with base metals to make to make them more usable.

platinum pendant with gemstones Base, or non-precious, metals include cadmium, zinc, lead, aluminum, copper, and titanium. Jewelers enjoy working with alloys because they can anodize or heat them to result in colors. Each metal and alloy has its own property, density, and melting point. A jeweler who is well versed in the different materials and their properties can produce creative designs.

When a precious metal is combined with a base metal, it creates an alloy. For example, silver is alloyed with copper to make sterling silver. Alloys are still considered precious metals, and their quality is tightly controlled by a standardized hallmarking process.

soldering silver jewelry A type of alloy is solder. Solders are low melting, and are used to join less fusible metals. Gold solder comes in plates, is marked in carats, and should be used with the appropriate carat of gold. Silver solder comes in strips of varying lengths and thicknesses.

Depending upon your specific needs, you can buy metals in many different forms, including sheets, tubes, wire, rods, and casting grains.

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Jewelry Metals - Jewelry Solders