Judy Larson's Small Flower Embellishment, Metalwork. Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder. Make several of these small ½
Small Flower Embellishment
by Judy Larson
  • Category: Metalwork
  • Technique(s): Butane Torch Techniques
  • Skill Level: Intermediate
Make several of these small ½" diameter flowers at a time because they can be worked into so many designs.

Materials

24 Gauge Dead Soft Argentium Silver Sheet - 6 Inches
H19-24SM6
  • Lesson Quantity: 1.00 pieces
  • Purchase Quantity: 1.00 1 Inch
  • Price: $48.95
  • Gold Club Price: $36.71
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Tools

Silver Solder Paste Medium SS70 - 1/4 T.O.
SOL-822.15
  • SOL-822.15
  • Lesson Quantity: 1.00 pieces
  • Purchase Quantity: 1.00 each
  • Price: $18.95
  • Gold Club Price: $14.21
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Basic Sawing Kit
G15-7
  • G15-7
  • Lesson Quantity: 1.00 pieces
  • Purchase Quantity: 1.00 each
  • Price: $34.95
  • Gold Club Price: $26.21
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Premium Steel Bench Block 2 1/2 X 2 1/2
G17-9
  • G17-9
  • Lesson Quantity: 1.00 pieces
  • Purchase Quantity: 1.00 each
  • Price: $15.97
  • Gold Club Price: $11.98
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7 Piece Mini TruStrike Hammer Set with Stand
HAM-520.70
  • HAM-520.70
  • Lesson Quantity: 1.00 pieces
  • Purchase Quantity: 1.00 each
  • Price: $140.54
  • Gold Club Price: $105.40
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11 Piece Wood Dapping Set
DAP-160.00
  • DAP-160.00
  • Lesson Quantity: 1.00 pieces
  • Purchase Quantity: 1.00 each
  • Price: $64.97
  • Gold Club Price: $48.73
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Blazer GT 8000 Big Shot Torch
TRCH-8000
  • TRCH-8000
  • Lesson Quantity: 1.00 pieces
  • Purchase Quantity: 1.00 each
  • Price: $89.95
  • Gold Club Price: $67.46
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Instructions
Step 1
Read through the tutorial before starting the project. Follow all safety precautions for the space you are working in as well as all safety precautions pertaining to the tools and supplies you will be using to complete the project.

Scale the template so the flowers are approximately ½" in diameter. Each flower requires two templates. You may wish to experiment with adding a third layer of petals to make a fuller flower. Print the templates on typing paper. Cut the number needed leaving an edge around the design.
Judy Larson's Small Flower Embellishment - , Metalwork, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, flower template
Step 2
A glue stick was used to attach the templates to 24 gauge sheet metal. The flowers are so tiny that a saw is the best way to cut them out. One flower should be cut outside the line. The other flower should be cut inside the line. It is not necessary to be really accurate in the cutting. Texturing will slightly distort the petals anyway, so this project is perfect for someone just beginning the foray into sawing. Just make sure to not cut a petal off. If that happens, turn that piece into a flower bud.
Judy Larson's Small Flower Embellishment - , Metalwork, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, cut out the flower
Step 3
Remove the paper templates from the all the metal. The metal pieces with glued templates can be soaked in warm water for a minute and the paper will slide right off. The remaining glue on the metal flower shapes should then be rinsed away.
Step 4
Place the metal flowers on a bench block. Use a Mini TruStrike Sharp Designer Hammer to make texture lines on the petals radiating out from the center of each flower.
Judy Larson's Small Flower Embellishment - , Metalwork, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, make texture lines
Step 5
Texturing the flowers work hardens the flower shapes. They must be annealed before shaping the petals. Place the pieces on a soldering block and heat until they turn pink. Allow the shapes to cool before continuing.
Step 6
Small depressions can be added to wood dapping blocks to help shape the flower petals. Place the center of a petal, texture side down, over a depression. Center a small dapping punch on the petal. One, possibly two hammer strikes on the punch is all it takes to shape each petal.
Judy Larson's Small Flower Embellishment - , Metalwork, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, dap the flowers
Judy Larson's Small Flower Embellishment - , Metalwork, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, dapped flowers
Step 7
Place the flowers right side up on a bench block. Determine which pin punch fits the center of the flowers the best. Use the flat section of the pin punch to push the center portion of each flower flat against a bench block. While holding the pin punch in place on the smaller upper flower section, pull the flower petals upward.
Pro Tip: Most hardware stores sell them, but a bit of research on the internet will lead you to 8-Inch Long Carbon Steel Pin Punch Sets, usually in sets of five ranging from 1/8" to 3/8" end diameters. Make sure the ends are FLAT, not rounded. I use the three smallest pin punches in my set often and would not be without them.
Judy Larson's Small Flower Embellishment - , Metalwork, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, flatten the middle of the flower
Judy Larson's Small Flower Embellishment - , Metalwork, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, flatten the middle of the flower
Step 8
Set the smaller flower on the larger flower, offsetting the petals. Use the pin punch to push the two pieces together. It may be necessary to bend the petals of the top flower up a bit more so they will not attach to the lower petals during soldering.
Judy Larson's Small Flower Embellishment - , Metalwork, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, stack the flowers
Judy Larson's Small Flower Embellishment - , Metalwork, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, flatten the middle flowers together
Step 9
Decide on a flower center. I keep a divided box of ball embellishments on hand. It helps to be able to audition different sizes of balls in a project to decide which works best. Several smaller balls work nicely, too. Another alternative flower center could be a domed ¼" 24 gauge disk.
Judy Larson's Small Flower Embellishment - , Metalwork, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, balled silver
Judy Larson's Small Flower Embellishment - , Metalwork, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, add a ball of silver
Step 10
Because this is an embellishment, it may be stored for later use. It is best to use the hardest solder possible to connect the pieces because who knows what step in a future project it will be attached. Remember, always start with the hardest solder possible and work down to medium, then easy, when soldering things together in different steps.

If the flower was made using sterling silver, hard paste solder should be used in this step. Since Argentium has a lower melting point than sterling silver and Argentium sheet was used here, medium paste solder was used.

Place a small amount of paste solder in the center of the bottom flower and place it on a soldering block-left side in the photo. Since a ball was used as a flower center here, a small amount of paste solder was placed in the center of the top flower, too, after it was pressed into the paste solder of the lower flower, making sure the petals were offset-center in the photo. Press the ball flat side down into the paste solder-right side in the photo.

If a domed disk is used as a flower center place paste solder around the bottom edge of the dome before pressing it into the center of the upper flower.

Heat each unit separately until the solder flows. Allow the flower to cool before moving it.
Judy Larson's Small Flower Embellishment - , Metalwork, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, solder the pieces together
Step 11
This flower should have several flat areas on the back because it is usually soldered to a flat surface. Run the back of the flower across a piece of 320 grit sandpaper on a bench block.
Judy Larson's Small Flower Embellishment - , Metalwork, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, the back must be flat so it can be soldered to something else
Step 12
Pickle the piece and then immerse in baking soda water to neutralize the acid in the pickle. Rinse again.
Step 13
Refine the flower petals a bit with a fine sanding pad, if desired. Tumble the flower for several hours.
Judy Larson's Small Flower Embellishment - , Metalwork, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, Tumble and polish
Step 14
The flower is ready to use.
Judy Larson's Small Flower Embellishment - , Metalwork, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, using the flower embellishment