Back to Basics on Silver

Raymond Jackson

This tutorial was to be led by Jane Short but due to illness, she was unable to attend. To try and mitigate some of the disappointment that Jane must have felt, I decided to give this a go as a lone attendee. I was helped considerably by the notes that Jane had provided beforehand and although I could not benefit from her experience “hands-on”, I did my best to interpret part of what Jane wanted to us to achieve.

Samples, 2cm by 1cm, 1mm thick were prepared in both Britannia and Sterling silver. The upper surface of each sample was cross-hatched to create a reflective surface. They were then immersed in concentrated nitric acid and washed to create a surface as near pure silver as possible. Finally the pieces were cleaned with a soft brass brush and washing up liquid to restore the brightness.

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