Lockdown Life: Isolation Diary ~ Daily Gem 11
DAILY GEM 11
Providing a little distraction from loo roll hunting, endless queues and lets be honest the anxiety of our situation.
Is a laser welder the super hero to your jewellery box?
In general, jewellery making tools haven't changed much in centuries, the basic principles and processes remain the same. However one major 21st century addition to the workshop is a laser welder. Wow! Makes us sound all Sci-Fi, battleships and super hero's...
Sadly not quite as exciting. Not quite...
Laser welders have become a must have piece of kit for jewellery workshops. Waaaaay back in the day, we had to use things like fine iron binding wire to hold pieces together so we could solder them, or prop them up with third hand tweezers, or embed them in plaster, or pin them into charcoal block or invent some other jig to hold them together. But now we can hold the pieces together between our fingers and laser them. Simples!
This is a laser welder you'd typically see in a jewellery workshop. As I said not quite as exciting as... say, a laser gun wielding Han Solo. Although, metaphorically speaking, you could say it has been a life saver to a lot of jewellers!
So how does it work?
In very simple terms, laser welding is a process used to join together metals using a laser beam. The laser beam melts the materials and permanently joins them together. It's a very intense focused heat which is why you can hold a piece of work in your hands whilst you work on it. Whereas when you solder a join together in the traditional sense with solder and a flame touch (oxygen and gas) you need to heat up a much larger area to a very high temperature so the solder melts, so there is absolutely no way you could ever hold it in your hands. This is why laser welding is perfect for making and repairing small items of jewellery, such as broken chains!
Without a laser welder to rejoin a broken link in a chain, the only other option is to solder it. However, if it's a fine chain then you run the risk of accidentally soldering several links together, or worse still, melting them. With a laser welder no link is too small!
So is the laser welder the super hero to you jewellery box? I think so! It rescues your broken jewellery and chains from extinction or a life discarded unloved at the bottom of your jewellery box.
You can see more details about repairing and refurbishing jewellery on my website
Be creative, stay home and stay well everyone!
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