Pam East DeNamel™
Removing enamel is not a cost-free eraser. After de-enameling, the
surface of the metal may become coarse and pitted. If the metal was very thin,
it may warp. Before making the
decision to de-enamel a piece you should ask yourself some questions. Did
the enamel come out really badly? Is it pitted, burnt, or bubbled?
Or is it just that you didn’t get exactly what you were expecting? Maybe
the color is a bit off, or it doesn’t look quite like you envisioned it?
If the answer is in the latter category, I suggest setting it aside for
a while before jumping into enamel removal. Enameling is a constant
source of surprises and design opportunities. Embrace the
unexpected! Remember, others looking at your work won’t know what was in
your head when you made it and will judge it differently. We often focus
on what we didn’t get, and lose sight
of some of the beautiful things we did
If the piece is truly destined for the recycle bin, and nothing of value
will be lost by de-enameling it, then DeNamel™ will do the trick! Please read the section on re-enameling
before attempting to re-apply the enamel.
DeNamel™ is non-toxic.
You cannot selectively remove
enamel. You must remove all the
enamel. If your piece has counter
enamel, remove the enamel on one side, and then repeat the procedure for the
NOTE: Wear safety glasses when de-enameling. Sometimes bits of enamel fly off during the process and it’s
necessary to protect your eyes.
Tools and supplies:
After de-enameling, attempts to re-enamel may result in the enamel
pulling or failing to adhere to the metal. In order to improve
re-enameling results, the piece should be completely re-fired without enamel
using a high temp firing sequence. Re-fire at 1600°F (871°C) for 10 minutes for
fine silver, and follow the manufacturer recommended firing for copper.
If any black marks appear after this firing, try removing them with a
wire brush. If that doesn’t work, repeat the de-enameling process and then
re-fire it again. The piece must be clean and free of both enamel and DeNamel™
before attempting to re-enamel it. Once it’s clean, burnish it well.
Tumbling for a minimum of 2 hours is a good choice. If you are enameling
smooth areas, use a hand burnisher as well. Clean with PreNamel™
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