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tline3open  Sinking a silver spoon bowl help

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Author Topic:   Sinking a silver spoon bowl help
OldNorthPewter

Posts: 9
Registered: Jan 2019

iconnumber posted 08-24-2020 05:12 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for OldNorthPewter     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I have been experimenting with forging silver (hot and cold). This serving spoon is starting to take form but I need help in how to sink the bowl adequately...what type of hammer to use? Do I file and grind down a sledge hammer face to the appropriate shape? I don’t have a sinking die, as I usually make all of my tools and try and stick by my pre industrialized methods guide, and help or advice from the skilled veterans out there would be much appreciated.

PS: I already have a hollow carved in my oak stump that I use for dapping pewter- would this work for the silver?

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FredZ

Posts: 1070
Registered: Jun 99

iconnumber posted 08-24-2020 06:55 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for FredZ     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
A depression in a stump will work fine. I would make sure you planish the spoon and file to even out the thickness and to smooth the surface. You can purchase a spoon stake or you can also upset a heavy steel rod to allow you to create the bowl. I suspect you have used a narrow cross pein hammer to do most of your shaping and forging.

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OldNorthPewter

Posts: 9
Registered: Jan 2019

iconnumber posted 08-24-2020 07:34 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for OldNorthPewter     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by FredZ:
A depression in a stump will work fine. I would make sure you planish the spoon and file to even out the thickness and to smooth the surface. You can purchase a spoon stake or you can also upset a heavy steel rod to allow you to create the bowl. I suspect you have used a narrow cross pein hammer to do most of your shaping and forging.

Thank you for the input! I used 2 different hammers: first a large flat face hammer (modified short handled sledge polished) to stretch the piece, then both sides of my narrow cross pein hammer. It seemed to move the metal faster and easier than the round pein. I am certainly open for suggestions on different hammers to use.

Would you recommend using a large pein hammer to strike and sink the bowl in consecutive blows starting in the middle or the edge?
I really do appreciate your input and welcome any suggestions, I know traditional silversmithing is a dying if not “dead” art but I endeavor to take it up and learn what is to be learned before it is lost.

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agleopar

Posts: 848
Registered: Jun 2004

iconnumber posted 08-25-2020 05:58 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for agleopar     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Old North Pewter,

Great job! It looks pro. A traditional spoon forger uses a large soft curve on one side and a cross pean face on the other. Usually you go back and forth from face to face depending where and what you’re trying to do at different stages of the forging. In general stretching then smoothing and hammering for the right thickness.

In the above image I’d smooth out now. After you’d be ready to sink.

As Fred said a depression in a stump can work. The old boys pour a lead block and then hammer into it the spoon stake. After it is the right depth you then hammer the stake over the flat (annealed) bowl into the depression.

Then crank the handle (the bend), mark and file up for the final shape before polishing.
This is a little abbreviated but basically how.

A spoon forger named David Baggaley on youtube (I think also posted here?) “making a handforged, handwrought, Sterling silver spoon”.
Will give you the idea.

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