2004 - Reticulation:A Scientific Explanation of the Myth and Mythology

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paper_icon2004.jpg

2004 - Reticulation:A Scientific Explanation of the Myth and Mythology

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Jewelry designers are always looking for new textures to incorporate into their work. One technique available is reticulation. An alloy of 80% silver, which is heat- and chemical- treated to de-nude the surface of base metals, is predominantly used. Further heating to a specific temperature allows the remaining composition alloy to melt while the surface layer remains intact and a rippled, ridged and reticulated texture appears. A two-year project was undertaken to scientifically investigate the "folklore" of this technique. The results in this paper put science into the art of reticulation. Extensive testing was done to determine best practice for the pre-treatment and reticulation operations. Heat source and torch type, alloys and stock form were all considered. The paper will conclude with a scientifically determined "best approach," which will include some examples of the stunning work produced by designers Andrew Nyce and Anne Hollerbach.

Authors: Stewart Grice &  Dr. Andrew Nyce

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