Here’s a soldered pendant tutorial you’ll love! Welcome to the world of handheld torches, butane and propane! This soldered pendant tutorial is my first journey into using a mini torch.
At first I thought – “I do glitter, can I do fire, too?” Um, YES. I’m always game to learn something new – especially something as exciting as this. Never in my wildest dreams would I have thought I’d be using torches. I’m going for it!
I decided to start small and work my way up. This month is a jewelry project and next month I’m going to take on a food project. Let’s get going and make some pendants!
I made a video tutorial, but I’m also including pictures here too!
Supplies listed below. Any micro torch will do. The model I used is not sold anymore.
The first thing I did was find some 1″ glass tiles. I bought these on Etsy. I designed some affirmational sayings and printed them to size.
I have the free printables at the end of this post in case you want to use them! Then sandwich the images, right side out, between the tiles.
Then roll it into the copper foil, and burnish the edges. Solder is not a gap filler, it will only go where the tape is, so any gaps will be seen.
After that, brush on a coat of flux. I used water-based flux and lead-free solder.
It’s really cool because it’s a small torch that you can use on small projects and even food! Then, you add one of the attachments and it turns into a mini heat gun. Add the last attachment and you have a solder iron. I like the idea of having one tool that serves multiple purposes, it saves space and I don’t have to buy all three!
Next, let’s talk butane. Mine didn’t doesn’t come with the butane, you can buy a can for $4.99 wherever the torches are sold (home improvement stores).
To fuel up, read the package directions. But basically – in a well-venilated area, with the torch off, and the safety lock on, turn it upside down, align the nozzle of the butane and press.
You’ll hear a hissing of the butane going into the tool, and when it sputters (about 5-10 seconds), that means it’s full. You’re ready to go!
Put on your safety goggles and gloves! Don’t work anywhere that is super cluttered. Don’t multi-task. Focus on enjoying the process of creativity and learning a new skill.
Work on a flat surface with proper safety gear
As far as work surface, I used an extra shelf from my kiln to work on. You can use a floor tile or something similar. Small clamps are crucial for this project, I bought mine at the dollar store! The clamps hold your piece in place while you solder!
Another thing about the solder iron – it has a little exhaust hole at the top, you can see when it’s hot because it will glow orange.
Make sure to keep that hole away from your face’s direction – and away from what you are working on, since heat comes out. I kept it facing up. To ignite, you click the safety button, use your thumb to pull back the lever, then switch the button to “continuous” – when you are done soldering a portion, simply, click the off button.
Don’t touch it, it’ll be hot!
There is also a switch on the bottom for flame level. You can read the package directions for all the fine details, I read them three times!
Here’s all my pieces ready to go, I was so nervous! And for nothing, it was a cinch to use!
Before you solder though, you have to apply a coat of flux to the copper tape surface.
You can also buy the flux where you buy the torch, solder wire and butane (hardware or home improvement stores).
Admire your work
I definitely got better by the fourth one. I used split rings because I was all out of jump rings! To apply the jump ring, it’s a little tricky at first. I wrapped the bottom of the ring with copper foil, then coated with flux.
Next, I built up a little pile of solder at the top of the pendant, then used the bent pliers to hold the ring and set it in place.
Then I dragged the solder all around it to secure. I plan to practice more on this part – maybe watch some YouTube videos for advanced tips!
Even though they looked nice, I wanted to add something else…when in doubt, add sparkle, right?
I used Aleene’s The Ultimate to affix the crystal chain around each pendant.
Wow, what a difference, it really brought these to life! The white paper, silver solder and clear crystals are subdued sparkle, if there is such a thing!
Thanks so much for checking out my soldered pendant tutorial!
My question to all of you – what torch projects should I do? Leave a comment with ideas, I’m open to try them!
Here is the printable, size down to fit your project.