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Getting Started with Soldering

Before you jump in with both feet - CLICK BELOW to read our 5 Rules for Successful Soldering.


You have now made the decision to jump into soldering! It's a rewarding craft that is full of creative possibilities.

Now, to make it easier to figure out what you'll need, let's start with a few questions, then consult the lists below outlining the basic tools and supplies you'll need to get started. Each item links to detailed information about the choices available and how they are used.

Question: "I only have a small space for set up? Is it safe to solder in my house or garage?"

Answer: Butane torches (also known as "micro torches") are safe to use when you take a few safety precautions. To protect yourself and your work surface use a metal tray with a lip around the edge to prevent any bits of molten metal from rolling off your soldering surface and onto your lap or the floor. (TRA­518.00) Work in a well­ventilated area and place a fume extractor near your soldering station to help clear out fumes during the soldering process. (CLN­950.00). Keep a working fire extinguisher nearby, wear safety glasses (GLS­120.24) and tie long hair back.

Question: "Am I going to need a really big set­up to get started?"

Answer: You'll need some basics to get started including a torch, solder surface, and a few other soldering tools.

  • Consider your workspace (a dedicated studio space vs. a portable set up);
  • the size of the pieces you are making (like soldering jump rings to chain or fabricating larger items like rings and pendants);
  • additional bench tools and metal supplies as needed for your specific projects.

Question: "I have a small set up already, but want to move on to making larger things. Where should I think about upgrading?"

Answer: One of the first things to look at when you want to upgrade is your torch. Many beginners start with a smaller torch (The Jumbo Max Flame torch SOL­310.00 is a good beginner model.) Moving up to a larger torch or one with more control may open soldering doors to bigger and more intricate pieces. (The Gentec Small Torch SOL­208.00 is a good upgrade choice.)

Question: Why are there so many specialized tools? Can't I just go to the hardware store and stock up?

Answer: There are a lot of tools when it comes to soldering, that's for sure! However, many tools used for the craft are not the correct size and scale needed for jewelry fabrication. If you have been making jewelry for a while chances are that you already have some tools on your workbench. Take a look at what you have and make a priority list depending on what your goals and needs are.

Question: Why should I learn to solder?

Answer: The ability to solder opens up a wide variety of techniques to the jewelry designer. Imagine being able to solder a jump ring on to the end of a chain, or have the ability to fabricate a component to your exact needs. You'll be able to create or modify pieces to suit your style. The possibilities are endless.

Question: Isn't it really difficult to learn to solder? What's the best way to learn?

Answer: Soldering is a craft that does take some practice and learned skills. However, the great thing is that you can jump in on any level that suits you. Small projects like soldering simple rings and pendants are a perfect starting point for the beginner. Hone your skills with a class from our DVD collection or choose from a variety of our books.


Soldering Tools and Supplies

Soldering Station Tools

Soldering Station Tools:

Torch - Torches provide the heat to melt solder and join pieces of metal. They can be used to fire metal clay, melt scraps and make creme brulee!



Cross Locking Tweezer - Use a cross locking tweezer to safely pick up hot metal pieces, the fiber pads on the handlesprotect fingertips. TWZ­741.00

Product ID: TWZ-741.00
Price: $3.35

Quenching Bowl - Quenching is the cooling of metal in water, before pickling. A small metal cup or bowl is ideal,the Cool Cup also has a locking tweezer, SOL­700.00.

Product ID: SOL-700.00
Price: $15.95

Soldering Surface - The surface that holds your piece while being heated with the torch.

Soldering Boards


Pickle - A mild acid pickle removes the flux and firescale from your soldered piece. Citric pickles are safe to use and effective. CLN-162.00.

Product ID: CLN-162.00
Price: $11.95

Safety Glasses - Safety first! GLS-120.40

Product ID: GLS-120.24
Price: $10.10

Solder Pick - Moving solder around is handled with a titanium pick, a set of three for each hardness of solder is perfect! SPK-930.99.

Product ID: SPK-930.99
Price: $14.95

Pickle Pot - AKA a small crock pot, it keeps the pickle warm, increasing it’s activity and has a small footprint. Place on a non reactive surface, glass, plastic or enamel to contain drips.

Product ID: CLN-584.00
Price: $24.95

3rd Hand - A cross locking tweezer with a weighted base, super handy to have around the soldering station. HOL-164.00

Product ID: HOL-164.00
Price: $8.95

Soldering Materials and Supplies

Flux helps to reduce the oxidation process during soldering
Flows to join pieces of metal together
Flat sheet metal, cut with saw or shears
Round, square, and half round stock, cut with flush cutter


Bench Top Tools:

A jewelers 'bench' is his castle...bench is the proper term to describe the working surface that every jeweler uses. It is set up to be efficient as well as ergonomic, contain all tools and supplies at ones' fingertips. Certain tools are expected on a bench, (and are recognizable around the world), these bench tools are indispensable.


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