Workhardening

To create functional wire jewelry without the aid of solder, you must know how to work-harden, or toughen, your moterial. One effective method is to hammer the piece on o steel stake. The stake must be clean, smooth, and dent free, or the wire will pick up irregularities.

Ploce your piece on the stake and "stroke" hammer it, ensuring that the flat port of the hammer comes down at 90* to the piece. It is easiest to hammer standing up, os the hammer head will hit the wire squarely, rather than at on angle, which could creating texturing and "dimples" in the metal. After hammering the piece several times, you will see the wire flattening and spreading.

Be very coreful when work-hardening colored wire as the colored coating can rub off, exposing the copper core.

Note thot this technique is not suitable for small jump rings and links, as it will distort their shape.

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