Best low temp solder to color match carbon steel

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Feb 12, 2019
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Hello, Gentlemen, I am not sure this is the right forum for this question, but I am wondering if anyone knows a good low temperature solder to join plain no alloy (except carbon, of course) steel to steel with minimum color difference. The finish is bright, not blued. I am attempting to fill in a crack in an antique piece, for cosmetic reasons only, no strength in the joint required.
 
I don't think you'll be satisfied with any solder to fill a crack. The color won't match, you'll have to over-fill the crack and sand everything back down, and re polish if necessary. When you sand/polish the solder is likely to be abraded away before the surrounding steel-leaving a low, discolored spot.
 
If it worked, why does it need to be redone?
There are many varieties of soft solder- from the one with the lowest melting point-Tix solder, to lead/tin combinations, to silver-bearing solders.
None will exactly match steel, and all will dull with age.
 
This could be a potentially dangerous thing to do in that if a person decided to use the knife it might fail and hurt someone. SOLDER IS NOT GOING TO PROVIDE A DURABLE REPAIR.

As far as it being an antique, meaning old and more valuable than new (?), any fooling around with it is going to take away from it's value not add to it.
 
Hello, Gentlemen, I am not sure this is the right forum for this question, but I am wondering if anyone knows a good low temperature solder to join plain no alloy (except carbon, of course) steel to steel with minimum color difference. The finish is bright, not blued. I am attempting to fill in a crack in an antique piece, for cosmetic reasons only, no strength in the joint required.


Check with someone that does stained glass artwork...…. Using solder to fill voids & make things is right up their alley......
 
It is not a knife, but a 600 year old helmet. Its owner dropped it. That crushed part of the crest. It had been pretty rusted out before it was restored, and was held together with solder and resin. I will have to reinforce it with something similar once I figure out how to solder it back together.
 
If it's kept bright the color mismatch won't be super noticeable as long as it's a small joint. So if the guy keeps the thing shined up it should be fine. If the helmet is allowed to oxidize/patina the solder will stick out like a sore thumb. Any lead/tin solder will work, just be sure to tin the surfaces first before you attempt to solder them. To tin steel with plain electrical solder, clean the surface you want to tin well with something abrasive, then get a blob of solder on the iron tip and "scrub" it on the steel surface while the solder covers the surface. The solder will flow and coat the surface as long as you get the material up to a high enough temp. Might need to leave the iron in contact for a while depending on how thick the material is.
 
A 600 year old helmet should probably be repaired by an expert.
 
An "expert" probably wouldn't repair it. He would conserve it as-is. And there really isn't much different that could be done to actually repair it, because nobody in their right mind would try to weld it regardless.
 
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