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All About Soft Wire
by Judy Ellis, Wire-Sculpture.com
Daily Wire Jewelry Making Tip
October 15, 2014
All About Soft Wire – Revisited
This week I found another great question in our older posts that I think is well worth revisiting – All About Soft Wire. Maybe you’ve had this same question as well.
I have been working with wire for more than 25 years, and have used many gauges, usually in half hard. However, sometimes I get more soft wire than I want. I remember my old teacher telling me when I complained about soft wire that it will work for a while, but then it’ll get hard. I have found that while shining the wire with a cloth that if I bend it gently and straighten it a few times, it does indeed get harder. Plus, if I twist half hard, it can get too hard to use, but if I twist dead soft (square of course), it gets just about right. What do you think?
Yes, twisting dead soft wire will make it close to half-hard temper. The question then would be, how much twisted wire do you want to be in your design?
As far as twisting half-hard wire and it becoming too hard, that would depend on how much of a twist or ‘bead’ you put on the wire. (Sometimes I will individually twist several pieces of 24g sq half-hard and use them to hand-sculpt with, and I often twist 21g or 22g sq half-hard when making a cabochon frame too.)
Answer contributed by Dale “Cougar” Armstrong
What Gauge to use:
Are you familiar with what gauges of wire to use in differnt kinds of jewelry? Here’s a quick chart for you to refer to in a pinch:
Wire Working Education
If you are interested in learning more about wire work or wire twisting take a look at the many Instructional DVDS and Wire Jewelry Books that we have available. A few suggestions might be our Jump Start Beginner Series, Intermediate or Advanced Series or even Coiling and Weaving Series.