a resin decoration will go into the circle
The problem comes in when I try to do things in a haphazard way. Let's face it. I'm not a skilled metal smith. Why? Because I don't do it often enough to become skilled. But I know just enough to get myself into trouble. I *think* I know how to do certain things, like solder a simple jump ring, but I push other knowledge out of my head to achieve my goal.
Things like the fact that the box bead is huge and the chain and jump ring are tiny. The huge bead will act as a heat sink and it will be difficult to accomplish the simple solder joint. Especially with the less than totally professional tools I own. But I go in full blast anyway.
What might I have done differently to help? I might have used a product called Cool Gel or even a piece of wet paper towel to cool down the bead. Then the flame would have been able to concentrate on the task at hand. (I like to anthropomorphise just about anything - hence a flame that can actually think).
I also might have gotten the solder pick out at the beginning of the project so that when the solder balled up and fell off I could have just picked it up and put it back where it belonged. But nooooo. I had to let the dang thing cool down enough to add another squirt of solder (I use paste).
Or I could have sanded the dang jump ring when it had oxidized. Don't I know that solder won't flow on dirty metal? It wouldn't be so bad if I hadn't gone through the sequence of unsuccessful attempts 10 times. No, I'm not exaggerating.
And all this after I had melted the chain in my very first attempt. That should have told me something. I should have started on paperwork or taken a walk or washed the dishes right then. But I persevered.
And don't you know that the perseverance paid off! The joins are done. Unfortunately so am I, so the rest of the project will have to wait until tomorrow. And now of course, I'm not sure I like it after all. Geesh. I need a breather.
Luckily I'm going out with my friend Tana tonight. She got the brilliant idea to score tickets to the opening ceremonies of the Ice Skating World Championships which are right here in L.A. this week! Woo Hoo!