After working with precious metals for a while, it is sometimes really liberating to work with less expensive materials. Especially now that the prices of silver have risen to the long forgotten levels...
Anyway, I ordered some bronze wire a while ago and started playing with it. It is a phosphor bronze wire –a cooper and tin alloy.
Just a few impressions for those that think about working with it:
- it’s harder than silver, which sometimes isn’t bad (the wire came in dead soft shape but the dead soft bronze is much less softer than the dead soft silver)
- that also makes it harder for soldering – the pin heads don’t come out as nice as with silver (am I doing something wrong? :D )
- there is an additional problem with soldering: I ordered some bronze solder but it’s not working, not reliable at all - silver solder is working perfectly but there is a problem of color then (it might be used for hidden or oxidized spots)
- when oxidized (with chemical that is intended to use on bronze), the liquid and the item appears like it’s rusty – the upper layer patina comes off easily and looks like black dust, but it looks great after the item is cleaned and polished :)))
So, I started to describe the feeling I get when I play (because I feel as I really can play) with less expensive materials. It’s not so burdening, like I don’t have such a respect for it as I do for silver. I started working with silver several years ago, I’d say around four, and I haven’t been using many non-precious materials since then. I would sometimes take some hobby wire, but those are usually plated, so it’s easily scratched and damaged, whether in the creation process or later. And I don’t like it.
This one is not plated or color coated, it has a nice color, it looks great when oxidized (I am an oxidizing freak) and it’s not so expensive as silver.
So I played with it yesterday and I’m really satisfied with the result. It's kind of chaotic, which is not really typical for my structured self ;)
Yay! Summer on the way :)