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March 2012

How To Melt Copper Wire

 If you ever come across the need to melt down some copper wire – perhaps you want to create something new out of your scrap metal or you need to attach the wires to another metal surface – you may look at the wiry strands and wonder how on earth you hope to achieve this. Thankfully, the temperature required to melt copper can easily be reached by many types of blowtorches used around the home.

First, take your copper wires and place them into the bottom of a crucible, after first making sure that the bottom is completely dry. Then place this crucible on a cement slab. Take your blowtorch with a flame-tip temperature of between 1,300 degrees Celsius and 1,900 degrees Celsius and light it.

Ensuring that you are wearing the proper safety equipment (heavy gloves, eye goggles and protective clothing), direct the torch at the copper wire you prepared earlier. Be sure to keep the full force of the flame on the copper wire until it completely melts. If you are using the copper in its melted form (to utilise in a mould, for example), you may now pick up the crucible with tongs and carefully tip it up.

Remember that, whenever you’re working with molten metals (including copper) you should never breathe in the fumes – they can be toxic and cause lung-related illnesses. You should also avoid pouring melted copper on damp surfaces, as this can cause severe damage to both the surface the metal (as it cools much too quickly, and mixes with the moisture).