Welding Pearl Drop Stud Earrings – Unleash Your Creativity with Micro Welding

Welding Pearl Drop Stud Earrings – Unleash Your Creativity with Micro Welding

In this video, I demonstrate how to make a pair of pearl drop stud earrings with a hand stamped initial for my daughter, using arc pulse micro welding.

I first hand stamped the initial on a quality tag. These tags are generally used for the ends of bracelets or necklaces, but sometimes designers use them for charms. I like that it has a hole already punched in. The principle applies to any shape of tag that you want to use. If you want to make it from scratch, you can do the same with any sheet of metal simply by drilling a hole (but you want to do this before welding the post).

In welding the post, I select a post with a base. If I was soldering this, where I have solder to seep into the joint, I could use a post that has no base. If you do not have access to your post with the base, you would have to first ball the end of the post, so that there is a gathering of more sterling silver to work with.  However, it is much simpler just to purchase stud posts with the base and they are readily available at your silversmithing supply store. 

In this case, I set the welder to 15W Power and have the electrode pointing at the seam between the base and the sheet of metal, with more of it leaning towards the base because I want that to melt onto the sheet.  

I do this all around the base, ensuring that it is melted, thoroughly for added security.

In the video I’ve bent the post to show you how strong the effect is of my welding. The post is completely bent, and the weld did not snap open.

In welding the drop, I selected wire which can go through the hole of the pearl twice. Threading both ends of the wire through the pearl, and cutting it with 2mm to spare on the other end, I create enough metal so that when I weld the two wires together, they will turn into a ball – thus creating a stopper for the bead.

I used 28 gauge sterling silver wire and weld the tip with 10W power. I did not use argon, and if I had, there would be less oxidation and perhaps a smoother base weld. However, if you do not have argon gas, you can remove the oxidation with a fiberglass bristle brush and smooth the weld with a file.

Tip for hand stamping: you can help centre your stamp by using masking tape, taping down the metal and using a marker to draw guidelines on the tape. 

Tip to remove oxidation and soot on the pearl or bead: hand or dish soap is very effective. Quite often the oils on your fingers get onto the bead and wires. When you weld some of that burns and causes blackness, but the hand soaps will remove grease effectively.

Tip: sometimes I weld the post onto thicker castings and metal sheets. The heat seems to dissipate quickly because of the greater thickness, so I adjust the power accordingly. It is always best to test your welds, for security

Click here to watch the full tutorial.