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HELP! I'm damaging my silver findings!

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  • HELP! I'm damaging my silver findings!

    I'm a new beader, and have been practising with base metal wire and findings. I've now moved onto sterling silver and am finding that because the silver is quite soft I am putting lots of tiny scratches and indentations in the jump rings when I open and close them with my pliers.

    Is there something I should be doing to protect the silver when I work with it. I have several beading/wirework books but they don't mention this at all.

    I do hope someone can help as it really spoils the piece if the findings look scuffed up.

  • #2
    Hmm, I know what you mean, the same thing happens to my findings but personnaly i feel on the scale of things that can go wrong its a minor irritation.
    It annoys me alot more when I find chips on the beads.
    I doubt anybody that buys a piece is going to be looking at the findings and noticing any marks on them.I reckon its something just us makers notice.

    Poisoned Apple Theatre - Handmade Crafts on Facebook


    • #3
      Thanks for the speedy reply, Seahorse!

      Thanks for your quick reply! I guess it is a minor thing on some pieces, but I'm making very simple Swarovski pendants, with decorative bead caps and bails, so the findings really do stand out.

      I also found that I can damage the bails with my pliers. I'm not being very heavy handed either! Maybe some beaders out there will have some ingenious tips.

      I've thought about maybe putting some sort of covering on my pliers...or maybe 'sanding' down the scuffs... Hmmmm


      • #4
        My set of beadsmith pliers have one pair of rubber coated ones, that might work as a solution?
        If you could get some.
        Sarah x

        Muddle Website
        Muddle's Facebook Page


        • #5
          These are mine

          Although I didn't buy them from here, can't remember where.
          Sarah x

          Muddle Website
          Muddle's Facebook Page


          • #6
            You can get Tool magic which is a rubbery solution you dip your pliers in
            Palmers is also great for findings
            Chris xx
            My Website
            My Blog


            • #7
              You could try covering your plier ends with masking tape - it doesn't last that long but it does help a bit.

              Another thing is to use your fingers! You can only get away with this if the silver is very fine/thin - and you don't mind destroying your nails!!

              I'm planning on investing in some nylon-nosed pliers but I think they'll only work if the silver isn't too strong. The tool magic looks interesting though.

              If you've patience, a bit of filing and sanding can help with some of the marks but it is fiddly and the silver will need polishing to get its shine back.



              • #8
                Thanks for all your replies

                Wow! It's great to get so many replies to my first post! I will definitely investigate the different kinds of pliers... and the masking tape sounds like a quick thing to try too.

                I'll let you know how I get on.

                Thanks again!


                • #9
                  Nylon pliers are good but not cheap. I have 2 sets of round nose pliers one are my good pliers, polished steel and are used for silver findings. The other are dark metal not sure what and are a little ruffer these are used for generl work that dosen't need to look perfect. If you intend to work in sterling a lot invest in a good pair of flatnosed and round pliers and keep them just for silver work.
                  "You've Got to Keep Your Mind Wide Open" - AnnaSophia Robb
                  my Folksy shop Goldy'sclearoutblog debaynewebdesign


                  • #10
                    I agree that nylon covered pliers are probably one good option.

                    A more unconventional and maybe slightly fiddly option to try that may work would be to hold the jump ring inside the edge of a small piece of soft cloth and use the pliers on top of that (if that makes sense..?) it might appeal to a perfectionist


                    • #11
                      I always use masking tape on my pliers. It also helps to use two pairs of flat nosed pliers rather than round nosed pliers.
                      You can get the tool magic stuff much cheaper in the hardware store - it's called plasti-cote in there, but exactly the same thing.



                      • #12
                        Hi, maybe if you are moving to sterling it is time to check your pliers for nicks and scratches (which are very easy to collect when you are starting out) and possibly invest in a new pair or two - I know it's an investment but it made such a difference to me when I moved to a matching pair of good chain nose pliers that felt comfortable in my hand - they just become a natural part of you. Also listen out for the tell tale noise that you haven't got a good enought grip on the rings, if you haven't the pliers will slip make a noise (hard to describe but unmistakable) and make a horrendous gouge in the ring (one of the first classes I went to the instructor could hear and recognise this noise from across a crowded room ! I know scratches seem a small thing but if you are photographing your jewellery the photos can be very unkind to marks.

                        Good luck with scratch free jump rings!
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                        • #13
                          Will let you know how I get on with the Tool Magic!

                          Thanks for all your replies.

                          I have ordered some Tool Magic and will let you know how I get on. If it's any good then I may be able to avoid buying a whole new set of pliers!


                          • #14
                            I put insulating tape around my plier, works a treat! (it's electrical tape) I stole it from my other half's tool kit...shhhh!

                            Love LittleGems x