Frit-Happens !

Jewellery => Metal and wire => Topic started by: Nikki on October 20, 2014, 10:37:06 AM



Title: Copper wire
Post by: Nikki on October 20, 2014, 10:37:06 AM
Not sure if I am putting this in the right place so feel free to move it.

I have been asked to make some headpins with glass at the end to match some beads for a customer, I have seen other people make a bead right onto the end of copper wire but I have no idea what wire to use and if I would be able to hold the wire or will it get too hot. They are not going to be big so I don't want thick wire. Can anyone suggest the best wire to use?

Thanks
 :)


Title: Re: Copper wire
Post by: dinah46 on October 20, 2014, 11:54:50 AM
For headpins on copper wire I use between .8 and 1mm copper wire ( I generally get it on the reel from wires.co.uk)
I have previously used a small pin vise to hold the wire but my favourite holder is a cheap craft knife with the blade removed as I find it easier to release the wire to get the headpin in the kiln.


Title: Re: Copper wire
Post by: GaysieMay on October 20, 2014, 12:49:20 PM
I use .8 copper and use a crocodile clip on the end of a thick mandrel.  :)


Title: Re: Copper wire
Post by: Nikki on October 20, 2014, 02:05:00 PM
Thanks for your help. I have some copper wire and I think I have found a vice that might work, will have a go.  :)


Title: Re: Copper wire
Post by: the lady with the lamp on October 21, 2014, 12:26:00 AM
Hi there is a tutorial on a blog called isinglass that shows you how to make them,very clear pics and directions im sure its on blogger you should have a look hope that helps you regards Parin.


Title: Re: Copper wire
Post by: Nikki on October 21, 2014, 03:17:57 AM
Thanks Parin, that is a great blog some really interesting things and a great tutorial for the head pins. I am looking forward to having a go.


Title: Re: Copper wire
Post by: Nikki on October 28, 2014, 02:40:30 PM
Okay I have made the head pins and am very happy with the results but I have heard I need to tumble them, I have a tumbler but was wondering what you use in it. I was thinking of stainless steel shot but its quite expensive, does anyone use anything else?


Title: Re: Copper wire
Post by: Enchanted Cobwebs on October 29, 2014, 03:20:51 AM
tumbling will make the wire shiny but you need to get rid of the oxide on the metal first, I use safety pickle from cooksons but  I'm sure there are other alternatives. I use stainless steel shot, mild steel is cheaper but you need to dry it thoroughly or it goes rusty (hairdryer works a treat). Just remember that all this motion will harden the wire. I find the glass headpins stand up to this well too


Title: Re: Copper wire
Post by: Nikki on October 29, 2014, 03:28:35 AM
Thanks for that, I have cleaned the wire so it looks clean but not very shiny and it is very soft so the main thing is to harden the metal and I hope add a bit of shine. will give it a go. Thanks


Title: Re: Copper wire
Post by: Shirley on October 29, 2014, 03:55:57 AM
Have a look at Manchester Minerals for the shot. It's a lot cheaper than some other places, although you need to watch out for shipping costs.


Title: Re: Copper wire
Post by: myrica on October 29, 2014, 06:14:36 AM
Could I jump on your thread and ask a related question please?

Is it best to garage headpins and other items made on metal or is it safe to cool as usual and batch anneal? I wondered if the addition of metal would cause more stresses in the glass and/or different rates of cooling.


Title: Re: Copper wire
Post by: Nikki on October 29, 2014, 01:29:51 PM
I garaged my first lot and batch annealed the second lot to see what happens, I will let you know if they survive the tumbler.


Title: Re: Copper wire
Post by: myrica on October 30, 2014, 03:45:13 AM
Thanks; I hope they survive!


Title: Re: Copper wire
Post by: spexy on October 30, 2014, 05:29:30 AM
I pickle mine and then just wipe the wire with a brillo pad to make it shiny. I don't harden them as it makes them easier to wire wrap if they are soft.


Title: Re: Copper wire
Post by: Nikki on November 01, 2014, 03:56:59 PM
Headpins have now been cleaned and tumbled and all survived even the tiny raised dots so very please. I didn't find any difference between the batch annealed and the garaged all survived the tumbler so very happy.


Title: Re: Copper wire
Post by: myrica on November 02, 2014, 04:57:13 AM
Brilliant!


Title: Re: Copper wire
Post by: Nikki on December 22, 2014, 03:01:45 PM
I've been doing my headpins on copper but I would like to use a silver coloured wired does it have to be silver or is there another type I could use and where can I get it?  :D