How do I bend a silverplate and/or a sterling silver fork?

I am trying to bend silverplate and sterling silver forks. I want to bend them in half on the handle. I have tried without heat (broke 2); with heat (broke 1). There has to be an easier, simpler way to bend these forks. Can anyone help me out with this? I have a vise, plenty of tools, a Dremel, and other "stuff" and now if I can only learn to bend these in half, I will be a happy man. Thanks for your input!!!!! LeroyA

warren's picture


Leroy, If what you are trying to bend is actual sterling silver than a proper anneal will turn the silver into a soft state. To anneal make some 1 part roach killer (boric acid) and 3 parts alcohol together for a firescale preventer.......flux. Coat the piece with the flux than light. After flame burns out you should have a white powder coat. Now using the torch either propane or acetylene heat until the piece gets a dull red. You will see the flux turn to a straw color. Now quinch the piece in water. Now you will have to pickle to remove any oxidation from the anneal. If you want to see a really poor video of what I am talking about go here:

 If it is not sterling silver and maybe stainless steel it should still bend but not break. warren

visitor's picture


what is the solution for your pickeling?

Rich Waugh's picture

For most non-ferrous metals,

For most non-ferrous metals, the simplest and safest pickle solution is Sparex #2 in water, mixed and used according to the manufacturer's recommendations. There are other formulas for do it yourself pickling solutions, but they use harsh acids that are only safe if you know how to handle them properly. Wihtout knowing your level of experience and background, I am hesitant to discuss them. The Sparex is safe enough if used according to directions and available at jewelery suppliers worldwide.

visitor's picture


My experience in class was that our teacher used a Sparex solution full strength, heated in an old [ceramic lined] crock pot.

Being a starving student, I make smaller batches not full strength. I cannot give you an exact mathematical formula however; a can of Sparex is supposed to make a gallon or so according to the manufacturer. I find the only difference between full strength and my smaller batches is - speed.

Heating is key here; heated Sparex works faster. I get away with stretching the Sparex because I work in smaller batches and work that solution to exhaustion.

WBF 8)

visitor's picture

Bending Stirling silver

THANK YOU ,This was very useful .