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Paillon when Silver Soldering?

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Bo'sun05/03/2021 15:20:08
396 forum posts

Good afternoon,

Simple question (I think).

"Paillons of Silver Solder". What is a paillon and what size is it?

Many thanks.

br05/03/2021 15:31:55
465 forum posts
4 photos

A Paillon a sheet of thin metallic foil used decoratively in enameling and gilding.

JasonB05/03/2021 15:40:32
20289 forum posts
2218 photos
1 articles

In silver soldering terms it generally takes the form of a short length of solder cut from the rod and placed against the joint before heating. Size and number of pallions will depend on the job in hand.

Personally I don't use this method very often preferring to feed in the rod as the flux flows

Bo'sun05/03/2021 15:47:17
396 forum posts

Thanks Jason, that's what I thought. I think if you judge the number of pieces required right, it might save you using too much solder, that you may then have to get rid of.

Michael Gilligan05/03/2021 16:18:21
17667 forum posts
811 photos

Literally, it is derived from the French paille, for Straw [as in chaff] ... and that is an indication of how light it should be.

I was taught to hammer the strip form of Silver Solder to a few thou’ thick, and then snip it into little paillons for use. ... If you are doing small work, this much tidier, and much more economical, than feeding a rod.

Horses for Courses !


Edited By Michael Gilligan on 05/03/2021 16:19:45

Bob Stevenson05/03/2021 16:22:31
489 forum posts
7 photos

Like Jason I don’t use this method normally..........something often overlooked is the crucial fact that the joint itself MUST be hot enough to melt the solder. If the joint requires more heat than the solder Pailin then you can be in the time the joint is getting to red heat the solder has gone!

Bo'sun05/03/2021 16:28:25
396 forum posts

Thanks All,

I think I'll try Jason's method next time. The paillons worked fine, if it wasn't for the flux bubbling up and moving them around away from the joint. Once the flux had gone "syrupy" I was able to reposition them and all was well. A bit of a faff none-the-less.

JasonB05/03/2021 16:36:30
20289 forum posts
2218 photos
1 articles

Yes that can be one of the problems. The other is if one of the parts being joined gets hotter before the rest the paillion will melt and flow out over that often away from the joint and does not always want to flow towards the joint once everything is upto temp so you end up having to fee din rod anyway.

It can be handy to pop a couple of bits inside an item and when you see the solder flash around the outside you know you have a good joint, also ideal for using up short bits of rod.

As Michael mentions if you only need a small amount of solder for a job you can hammer the end of the rod flat and then cut along it's length with tin snips, do use a clan hammer and surface to rest it on as you don't want to drive dirt into the solder.

Michael Gilligan05/03/2021 16:36:59
17667 forum posts
811 photos

Aha !! [Bo’sun]

Perhaps I should have mentioned that in small work, the paillons are typically trapped within the [fluxed with Borax] joint prior to binding the parts together with soft Iron wire, and then heating.


Edited By Michael Gilligan on 05/03/2021 16:38:23

JA05/03/2021 17:50:06
1129 forum posts
71 photos

I use paillons (not a word I have not seen before). I work out how much I need and position the bits with care. I admit they do get pushed around by the flux. I then add a litle bit more solder from the rod after they have melted and run.

There are advantages. The spread of the molten globule of solder is the indication that you can add more solder. When I first tried soldering steel by just using a rod I got no where. The solder would not melt so I got the joint hotter and burnt the flux. All this changed with the use of pailons. I realise now that touching the joint with the cold rod chills it locally so dropping the temperature below the solder melting point. Silver solder is a good conductor of heat (along with brass and bronze) but steels are poor.


Bill Phinn06/03/2021 00:26:55
470 forum posts
78 photos

Paillons laid on before heating is much more common than stick-feeding among jewellery fabricators. One of the advantages of it for jewellery fabricators is that a very precise amount of solder can be applied to a joint in circumstances where an excess of solder would very probably mean spoiling the contours of a piece whether it was left on or cleaned off.

Experienced fabricators executing multiple small solder joints on a single piece tend to use a slight variation on the paillon laid on before heating: they ball up a paillon on a soldering block by heating it, pick it up on the end of a flux-dipped solder pick or tweezers, and then apply it to exactly where they want it just before the part reaches flow temperature. This method combines the advantages of stick-feeding and paillon laying: it carefully controls the amount of solder on the part and stops the paillon bubbling out of position early in the job.

You can see this technique in action in various parts of this video of the goldsmith Kevork Gurunian at work. Try 24.15 if you want to go straight to an example of it.


Edited By Bill Phinn on 06/03/2021 00:46:18

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