All About Argentium: From Fusing to Fold Forming

Course Description

About this course

Argentium sterling (AS) is a sterling silver alloy that does not firescale, is highly tarnish resistant, fuses and granulates beautifully, and can be hardened at toaster oven temperatures. It has so many virtues, but working with it is very different than working with traditional sterling silver. Students in this exciting and informative course will learn the techniques for working with Argentium that will make this metal a joy for every jeweler.

This workshop will focus on teaching students how to fuse, granulate, solder and Fold Form with Argentium. Fold Forming in Argentium will give students the opportunity to practice, and get great experience annealing this metal properly, while simultaneously teaching them a new technique for forming on a jewelry scale with an extremely malleable metal. During the work-time between demonstrations, students may choose to make samples, or to focus on making a few finished pieces.

This course is appropriate for people with basic jewelry skills, as well as professionals.

Excited about working in sterling silver without the problem of firescale, Cynthia has been using Argentium silver since 1999. After meeting Peter Johns (the inventor of Argentium silver) in 2003, Eid has participated in some of AS's development. Argentium International, Ltd honors Cynthia Eid with official recognition as Pioneer of AS. If you'd like to see more of Cynthia's work, please visit her website cynthiaeid.com.

 

Meet the Instructor

Cynthia Eid

Whether using hammers and stakes, or hydraulic press tools, Cynthia's sculptural jewelry and hollowware shows her focus on exploring the fluidity with which metal can be moved, formed, and joined.

Cynthia Eid co-authored the book Creative Metal Forming, with Betty Helen Longhi, published in 2013 by Tim McCreight's Brynmorgen Press. In his foreword for the book, Michael Good says the authors "have succeeded in assembling the first comprehensive textbook on synclastic and anticlastic forming." (More about the book available at www.creativemetalforming.com.)  

Cynthia and Betty developed a set of anticlastic stakes, and Eid also works with Knew Concepts and Bonny Doon to help make tools for jewelers and metalsmiths. Lee Marshall has dubbed Cynthia Eid "Godmother of the Knew Concept Saws" since it was her idea for him to produce these saws for jewelers.

Excited about working in sterling silver without the problem of firescale, Cynthia has been working with Argentium Silver since 1999. After meeting Peter Johns (the inventor of Argentium Silver) in 2003, Eid has participated in AS's development. Argentium International, Ltd recognizes her as a Pioneer.

Cynthia Eid's metalwork has won awards for creativity and design, been featured in many publications, and been exhibited internationally. With a BS in Art Education and MFA in Jewelry, Design, and Silversmithing, she has previously worked as a bench jeweler for fine goldsmiths, a model-maker in a gold jewelry factory, and on private commissions. Her work is in museums in the US and UK. Currently an independent metalsmith and educator, she teaches weekly classes at Metalwerx in Massachusetts, and workshops and short courses in the US, Canada, Europe, and Australia.

 

Materials & Tools 

A materials fee will cover copper for experimenting, as well as some Argentium sterling sheet, wire, ear posts and nuts, and AS solder for making finished pieces. The fee is payable to the instructor at the workshop, and expected to be around $75.

Students should bring 
  • A black medium or broad tip Sharpie marker – a necessity for annealing
  • 3 "dishes" or containers to hold solder chips and granules, such as yogurt lids or plastic caps
  • Close-toed shoes (for safety in case of dropping something hot, sharp, or heavy)
  • Energy and enthusiasm

Metalwerx has a supply of hand tools that can be shared by students. If you wish to bring your own hand tools, you might wish to bring:

  • Apron
  • Paper, pencil, fine point permanent marker, ruler
  • Abrasive paper, Sanding sticks esp 400 & 600 grit (or equivalent)---thin edges need to be rounded, so they don’t feel sharp
  • Students may wish to bring a bit of gold scrap or wire for soldering or fusing to Argentium silver. 18K or 22K, or 24K are recommended---14K melting temp is too low.
  • Safety glasses and dustmask
  • Pliers—including flat nose and round nose
  • Hand shears, such as Joyce Chen (available through Allcraft--- call 1-800-645-7124 & mention that you are a student of Cynthia Eid's, and get the student discount.) Ordinary scissors can also be used for the thin metals used for microfolding.
  • Camera for note-taking
  • Your own Argentium Silver, in case you are prolific. Good gauges for microfolding AS sheet are in the range of 24 to 34 gauge.
  • Favorite flex shaft tools, especially rubber abrasives and radial bristle discs
  • Favorite soldering tools (eg. soldering pick/poker, tweezers, flux brush…)
  • wire cutter
  • jewelers' saw and blades

Suggestions for participants who like to prepare for a workshop by reading::

Tuition

$500.00

Materials Cost

$75.00
Payable to instructor in class.

Instructor

Cynthia Eid

Dates

September 30 -October 2, 2016

Time

10:00 AM -5:00 PM

Length

3 days

Level 
Basic and above
Location 
Metalwerx
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