Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Metals 1: Project 3

This was the last project for my Metals class. I'm so sad that it's over. I'm even sadder that my schedule doesn't allow me to take more Metals in the spring.
This project was to make a container with  
      1) a pressure fit lid
      2) some form of etching
      3) a fairy tale theme.
I choose Peter Pan.

The first thing I had to do was the etching. I used nickle silver for this piece, mostly because that's the metal I had, and like I said in my post about Project 1, nickle silver is hard and cranky. In order to get a decent etch depth it had to sit in the acid for 5 (FIVE!!!) hours.  Soo ridiculous. Fortunately, it turned out well. (To give you perspective, with copper, etch time is more like 2 hours.)

The black is the Resist. This picture is after it came out of the acid, was neutralized, and I gave it a quick rub-down to remove some of the Resist. When I first put in in the acid it was solid black everywhere except for where the crocodiles and clock were.
The Resist actually burns off during the annealing process so after this point the black, dirty stuff on the metal is just heat patina.

Next, I soldered on a strip of metal that would later act as the lid lip. (sorry, no pics of that step)
Then I bend the metal so the to ends met, soldered them together, and hammered it into a cylinder. The silver solder line is really obvious is the pic below.

I used a both a ring and bracelet mandrel to shape the metal.
Once I smashed it into shape, I had to cut the metal lip band off. This was a hassle but by doing it this way it ensured a better match of the two pieces, Unfortunately, it was not a perfect fit and I did have to stretch the container part by forcing it down to a wider part of the bracelet mandrel. Stretching cranky nickle silver was a Major Pain, as you can imagine.
When I got the lid to properly fit on the body it was downhill from there.

This is the body soldered onto the bottom. I stick soldered on this project, which uses so much more solder, but, in my opinion, is way easier.

Attaching the top of the lid was a bit trickier since the etching had to be lined up.  To do this I cut tabs in the metal that could be curled up and used to 'pin' the lip band in place. These were later cut off so it didn't have to be pretty, thank goodness.

Once those two pieces were soldered together all that was left to do was saw the excess metal off, clean up the metal, and coloring.
To clean the nasty heat patina and solder blemishes off the metal I used a Dremel with buffing bit.
**Ladies, if you have never used a Dremel get acquainted with it! Awesome, awesome tool.** Once the metal was cleaned to perfection I used a bit of spray paint to add some color into the etched parts.

1 comment:

  1. I am sooo impressed by this. It's gorgeous and so special because you made it yourself. Amazing!

    Loulou Downtown