Royal Tiger Flux
Posted 23 July 2010 - 06:35 AM
I asked here before about Welding or brazing silicon bronze, and Glen mentioned Tiger flux. I didn't do any welding as it turned out. Now I finally had a project I wanted to weld, and I decided to get sil-br wire, since the work is too delicate for1/16" rod. I had to special order the wire, and the guy said that Tiger Flux was recommended for torch welding, so I ordered that too. There are no directions on the can, but I noticed that it's a fine powder, instead of granules, like most brazing flux, so I decided to try mixing it with water to make a paste. This worked great! I was able to put a good thick coating on the edges to be welded, and it didn't pop off when heated. The picture below shows the welding done, after pickling.
When I first started using bronze, last year, I was disappointed to find out that "Magic Flame", (see this), which works so well to prevent firescale on brass, is useless on bronze. I've had to put up with ugly black firescale, which takes a long time to remove in the pickle, and leaves a red copper coating even after pickling. After my success with the Tiger Flux paste, I decided to give it a try as a firescale preventive. I had to mix it with alcohol to get it to cling to the metal without beading up, which is what I also have to do with the Magic Flame. It works great! The picture below shows a piece I annealed with the Tiger Flux coating, un-pickled. No firescale!
After that success, I decided to try the Tiger Flux for silver soldering. It seems to work better than what I've been using!
Posted 23 July 2010 - 09:14 AM
Not to be a party pooper, but I looked up the MSDS of both Royal Tiger Flux #3 and #4. For both of them, the primary ingredients are Boric Acid and Sodium Tetraborate Decahydrate (Twenty Mule Team borax) It lists the rest of the ingredients as "Other ingredients, if any, are not on the lists of hazardous materials and are classified as trade secret."
The Borax has a higher melting temperature but lower viscosity.
Boric Acid melts at a lower temperature but with a higher viscosity.
By mixing them together, you get a flux that becomes chemically active sooner there Borax alone, but quickly has the advantages of lower viscosity if needed.
As for the statement "Other ingredients, if any, are not on the lists of hazardous materials and are classified as trade secret." I know of NO ingredients that can be added to Borax or Boric Acid that will enhance their fluxing ability, that are not also listed as an hazardous material. If there are more ingredients, they're inert fillers. Fluorides would be a example of something that would enhance, great stuff, but very nasty to breath. Therefore on the list.
Sorry about writting this, but over the years, I keep coming across fluxes which are nothing more then repackage Borax. There's a guy out in the Midwest selling a flux which list Sodium Tetraborate as the ingredient. Says it's the premier forge welding flux available. What he doesn't say, is Sodium Tetraborate is the same thing as Anhydrous Borax. His price for a 1 lb. can is $16. I pay $3.50 a lb
So if you're getting Royal Tiger Flux at a good price, great, if not, you can mix up your own for about $2 a Lb.
Posted 23 July 2010 - 09:27 AM
. I had to mix it with alcohol to get it to cling to the metal without beading up, which is what I also have to do with the Magic Flame. After that success, I decided to try the Tiger Flux for silver soldering. It seems to work better than what I've been using!
Very nice weld. I have no experience in bronze welding, but doing a lot of Silver soldering (I consume about 1 lb. of 1/16" silver solder wire per month). Instead of mixing the flux powder with alcohol, I mix it with water and add to the mixture a tiny drop of washing up liquid (Fairy, Palmolive or any other brand). This lowers the surface tension of the flux and makes it very easy to smear without creating beads.
"He who works with his hands - is a laborer,
He who works with his hands and his head - is a craftsman.
He who works with his hands, his head and his heart - is an artist."
St. Francis of Assisi
Posted 23 July 2010 - 11:31 AM
"I am not ashamed to admit, that I am ignorant of the things I do not know"!
I am not a lawyer, and never played one on TV!
All the usual and standard disclaimers apply. Do not try this at home, use only as directed, No warranties express or implied, for the intended use or suggested uses, Wear safety glasses, closed course, professionals only
Posted 23 July 2010 - 01:20 PM
I don't know how much it cost yet. The manager of the store was gone when I picked it up, and nobody else could find the price, since it was special order, so they're sending a bill. What I like about it is that it's a very fine powder, like flour, and mixes easily with water or alcohol and, so far, doesn't settle out or re-crystallize. All of the other brazing fluxes I've seen are granulated, like course sugar, and don't dissolve very well, if at all. If I remember correctly, 20 Mule Team Borax is also granular.
Avishai, Thanks for the suggestion. I'll have to give that a try.
Posted 23 July 2010 - 06:15 PM
Anyway , glad you like what you're using.
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