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Saturday, December 31, 2011

New High Tech Tool for the Studio

Ever wonder why it takes years of doing the same process before you realize there's a better way?  This has made me scratch my head in wonder.  Where has this simple idea been?  I have found a new tool for my studio and it was right there in my utensil drawer for years.  A small strainer.

I do a lot of dipping of copper wire into Liver of Sulphur.  I typically use a plastic fork that the good folks at McDonald's include with my salads.  I use the folk to fish out the small components and links from my solution.  Sometimes those tiny components, that haven't been connected to a piece, can be annoying as they run away from my fork.  This keeps them in the Liver of Sulphur for longer than intended and that makes more work for me to remove the excess.  Today I woke up with my little strainer on my mind.  Whoa!  What a great idea!  So I put it into action immediately!

I have found it easier for me to oxidize the components before assembly.  This allows me to clean some of the nooks and crannies quicker and easier.  Sometimes I even run them in the tumbler before assembly, especially if I've made a chain or necklace.  It helps to keep it was knotting up and putting me in a bad mood. grrrrr.

I like using the gel form of Live of Sulphur.  I stir the goop from the bottom of the container and mix it up before adding it to the warm/hot water.  I don't know why it settles and the directions don't say to stir, but it makes sense to me and seems to work.

After most of the excess has dripped back into the original container I dip the fork with the balance into the warm/hot water and swish it around.

Now I dip the little strainer with all those loose pieces into the solution.  I use my fork to move things around to make sure everything has good exposure until the copper wire becomes the color I want.

Then my little strainer takes all of my little parts for a trip over to the clear water to stop the oxidizing.  Some folks put some baking soda into the water to stop the oxidizing, but I never have.  The plain water seems to do the trick.

One more trip in the strainer up to drain off the water and then the components go onto a paper plate or paper towels to dry.  Then the real work starts.  After they are completely dry I'll take some 0000 steel wool and maybe the Dremel with a silicon disk and remove some of the oxidization, assemble, take pictures, list in inventory, add a price tag and store until it's time to take a road trip to be sold.  As soon as this necklace is completed I'll post some pictures.

Thank you for visiting my little blog.  I hope that I have written something of value and maybe entertaining.  Have a Happy New Year full of positive blessings, excellent health, abundant prosperity, fun and laughter and the love of family and friends.



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Thank you for your kind words. I'll answer any of your questions very soon. Linda