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  • Fine Silver Earring Posts

    I've had an idea for some earrings (current earrings I make use sterling posts with a loop which can be opened like these: http://www.abeadstore.com/s.nl/it.A/...3&category=291).

    But for my new idea I need the posts to be permanently attached (i.e. static so they don't move independently)...I cannot find any fine silver earring posts anywhere (I don't think they even exist). If I use sterling sliver posts I'll have to pickle the earrings after to get rid of firescale on the posts - but from what I've read elsewhere it sounds a bit complicated and you need a pressure cooker etc.

    I was wondering if anyone new if there's a thick gauge fine silver wire that could be used instead? I dunno if that's totally unrealistic but hopefully someone will know either way!

    Thanks,
    Emma
    www.silverflock.com - Handmade fine silver jewellery
    www.emmajacob.com - Illustration

  • #2
    Hiya

    You can just pop the sterling silver into the pickle mixture (made with warm water), it just takes a bit longer than with a machine (some people use slow cookers).

    Not seen fine silver earring posts either. I get my fine silver wire from Cooksons.

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by Hagar View Post
      You can just pop the sterling silver into the pickle mixture (made with warm water), it just takes a bit longer than with a machine
      Ooh, that's good to know! Thanks Hagar, do you think that using fine silver wire would be unsuitable - I suppose a thick gauge would still be too maliable for earring posts?
      www.silverflock.com - Handmade fine silver jewellery
      www.emmajacob.com - Illustration

      Comment


      • #4
        I only work with 1.5mm fine silver wire and this would be way too thick, sorry!
        Hope someone else may know.

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by Hagar View Post
          I only work with 1.5mm fine silver wire and this would be way too thick, sorry!
          Hope someone else may know.
          Lol - imagine trying to get that through a normal piercing! Hmm...I think something like 0.8 - 0.9mm would work, but that really depends on if it's strong enough and doesn't bend too easily.

          Might just have to go with sterling silver posts and pickle them after.
          www.silverflock.com - Handmade fine silver jewellery
          www.emmajacob.com - Illustration

          Comment


          • #6
            Talking of pickle, does anyone know where I can buy powdered "safe pickle" from that would be willing to post to France ? I've almost run out and I can't remember where I bought it from.
            My Website - www.lavidalerie.com
            FaceBook Page- www.lavidalerie.com/JewelleryMakingHolidaysandWorkshops.html
            I'm new to blogging so please be gentle - www.lavidaleriesilverjewellery.wordpress.com

            Comment


            • #7
              Emma, fine silver is way too soft to use for earring posts - it bends before you can even get it through the hole! Sterling works better.

              If you don't want to get into the whole pickling thing, just use regular white vinegar with some salt (about a cup of vinegar to a tbs of salt) - heated works faster (30 secs in the microwave is enough). Or Cillit Bang if you've already got some knocking around. Both work fine and you don't need to buy anything new.

              Karen, there are several ebay sellers with safety pickle - most are just powdered alum (which is my preference anyway). Otherwise, you should be able to get sparex or phDown from a pool chemical supplier there surely?
              george
              www.mizgeorge.co.uk
              www.etsy.com/shop/mizgeorge
              www.flickr.com/mizgeorge

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              • #8
                You can make your own fine silver posts from .8 or .9 wire. If you tumble your pieces, that will harden it up quite a lot.

                On the subject of pickle, you can get alum granules from Boots (they have to order it) and that works just as well as safety pickle if you heat it up in the same way. It's only potash, so I think it would be OK to send in the post. Safety pickle can't be posted as it's a hazardous material.
                Best wishes
                Carole

                www.caroleallenjewellery.co.uk

                Comment


                • #9
                  Sterling silver is definitely better for posts than fine silver
                  (it's stronger). Are you wanting fine silver because it's to go on
                  PMC/Art Clay? If you are then after pickling I suggest soaking the
                  earrings in hot bicarb solution....(PMC is porous so it helps neutralise the pickle)

                  Nicx
                  **FREE to enter monthly draw on my BLOGS**
                  Different prize every month
                  Jewellery Creations & Shop Blog
                  PMC & Silver Clay Hints and Tips Blog

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Thanks v much George, Carol and Nic for the info re safe pickle.
                    Kx
                    My Website - www.lavidalerie.com
                    FaceBook Page- www.lavidalerie.com/JewelleryMakingHolidaysandWorkshops.html
                    I'm new to blogging so please be gentle - www.lavidaleriesilverjewellery.wordpress.com

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      George and Carole, you've both confused me! Sounds like you've had very different experiences with making fine silver earring posts.

                      Hmm...I do tumble my work, I should get a bit of fine silver wire and see how well it hardens up once it's cut down to the right length and tumbled (I'd hate to attach the wire and find that it doesn't work out for me). lol

                      Nic, yes you're correct, I will be using pmc for the earrings - so thanks for your advice on the bicarb solution! I think I still have a way to go with the research and experimentation on this.

                      Thanks for all the great advice,
                      Em
                      www.silverflock.com - Handmade fine silver jewellery
                      www.emmajacob.com - Illustration

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Oh sorry, didn't mean to confuse you! I personally don't use fine silver posts but I know someone who does and she gets on with them very well. Given the choice I'd always use sterling.
                        Best wishes
                        Carole

                        www.caroleallenjewellery.co.uk

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          haha, no worries Carole!

                          Well, you all have a HUGE amount of experience, so I shall stop faffing about and listen to your advice and go with sterling silver posts.

                          Just out of curiosity - if I'm using sterling silver wire for the posts, can I attach it to the earring when they are in their clay form and then fire the piece in one go or is that a massive no-no?

                          Em x
                          www.silverflock.com - Handmade fine silver jewellery
                          www.emmajacob.com - Illustration

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            I think that if you want to use sterling silver you need to change the outer skin to be more fine silver than sterling.
                            This can be done my heating the sterling until it discolours and then pickle, this needs to be done about 5 or more times. Each time you are removing the copper from the surface. The end result should be a thin layer of fine silver.
                            Not sure if this will weaken the head pin, but the inside will still be sterling so it should still be strong.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Hiya, I wouldn't use fine silver posts as they are too soft. I used to use them with silver clay when making studs as I could set them straight into the clay. Even after tumbling for ages they still bent quite easily, putting the backs on would do it. I solder sterling wire on now.

                              As for pickle I get safety pickle from gouldjewellers (they have a .co.uk website but I couldn't post it!) they are out of stock at the mo though. I use it with an scented oil burner, the type that has a tea light underneath and I put a small bowl of the pickle in the bit where the oil usually goes. It's a really cheap and easy set up and I've been using mine for over 5 years now. It works just as fast as acid if you keep the liquid warm.

                              That was my 1st post woo hoo!! Hope it was usefull!!

                              Lucy
                              Lucy

                              www.lucykempjewellery.co.uk
                              http://lucykempjewellery.blogspot.com

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