OPEN THREAD 20191223

Basically, all legal free speech is allowed. We will assist the authorities in dealing with illegal speech. You are each other’s moderators. Have fun. And don’t forget to MAGA at nuclear levels.

Citizen U

Day 47 – SILVER.

28 thoughts on “OPEN THREAD 20191223

    1. Some of the methods used by these early metallurgists are known, however — and one tricky bit is cupellation — known to be getting silver out of lead ore back around 3,000 BC. Being a “noble metal”, silver could be heated above its melting point in conditions where other metals would react and form slag…..while the silver just trickled out.

      Again, I want to emphasize — the cupellation article identifies this with the EARLY Bronze Age, where the Bronze Age generally happened about 3300-1200 BC in the middle east and India….and a couple of hundred years later in the far east and Europe. That puts it at 3,000 BC.

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  1. Silver is more electrically conductive, thermally conductive, and reflective than any other metal. It makes the best wires, heat sinks, and mirrors.

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  2. I have previously mentioned that there are a number of things that machinists talk about like everyone should know them. “Silver solder” is another one. Like regular electronic solder, this encompasses a huge group of mixed substances that are used in similar ways. Like regular electrical solder, the workpieces are heated, and the solder flows into gaps by capillary action.

    The differences start by the method of heating — electronic soldering (based on tin) is typically through use of a soldering iron, silver solder uses a torch. Electronic soldering typically flows at 360-420 degrees F, where silver solder is more like 1300 degrees F. Electronic solder is meant to unite two things electronically, and it kinds of holds ’em in place as a bonus; silver solder makes the two parts into one for further metalworking operations. Example (not a recommendation, just an example) —

    I know a guy who makes little cylindrical brass gas tanks about 2″ across and 5″ long for model engines. He has specific jigs and dies to make the ends and silver-solders them into the ends of polished tubes. I’ve seen several examples up close and cannot see the join. He tells me there are three pieces, he shows me one end cut out before it’s formed, he shows the forming jigs, he shows three pieces before he puts ’em together, and he shows me the completed work where I cannot see a join — it’s like magic. My favorite operation is when they’re nearly finished, he puts on a compressed air fitting and pumps ’em up to over a hundred pounds. Not only does this ensure that the silver solder bond is perfect, it also puts a nice dome on the ends.

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  3. OK, before I forget, I’m going to drop a music video and a joke inappropriate for the genteel crowd at the Qtree.

    Here’s the vid:

    Because you just don’t have enough weirdness in your life.

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  4. So, there’s a guy who decides to explore some of the more remote parts of Scotland……

    And, before I really get rolling on this, I’ve been to Scotland. If you’re in Edinburgh (the capital), you’re in a port town on the East Coast of Scotland (on the Firth of Forth). If you’re in Glasgow (the largest city), you’re in a port town on the West Coast of Scotland (on the River Clyde). The distance between the two on the M8 is about 46 miles. It is astonishingly compact. On the other hand, there are large areas where travel has its challenges.

    Anyway, to get back to our tale, our guy is out where people talk about doing a trip to Tarbert for trade. Finding himself a bit thirsty after exhausting his own stock, he finds a local public house.

    He walks inside and finds it’s neat, and clean, the pricing on the chalkboard is reasonable, and it seems friendly enough, but he’s the only customer. He has the bartender pull a draft, and the bartender pulls one for himself as well.

    Being that there’s nobody else to converse with, our guy goes through the introductions — turns out the bug-eyed bartender’s name is Angus MacSchiff, and he’s the sole proprietor. And then it’s time to draw another pair. Angus allows that he has family roots in the area, but they’re not close. He has two sons and a daughter, but they have moved far away and don’t keep in touch. His wife passed away while the kids were at school. And it’s time for another pair of draft ales.

    Angus put a plate of goodies on the bar in front of our guy……our guy tried a few things and ignored the rest. Angus pulled the remains off the counter and devoured them as he poured another pair of pints……

    And Angus bursts out — he says, “my family farmed this land for generations, but I had a dream to own a public house. I farmed well enough to finance such an undertaking, but do they call me Angus the farmer? Nae.
    I had a financial plan to build this public house. But do the villages call me Angus the entrepreneur? Nae.
    I dug the foundations and set the stones myself, then built the walls — but do the villagers call me ‘Angus the mason’? Nae. With my own hands, I built every component of the interior of this place — but do the villagers call me ‘Angus the carpenter’? Nae. Our family raised three successful children in their time, but do the villages call me ‘father Angus’? Nae. And when my Beloved left me to dwell in the Eternal, did the villages call me ‘the Widower Angus?’ Nae. I stocked this bar with the finest of libations, as best I knew how — but was I called ‘the barkeep Angus’? Nae.”

    “……but you shag one sheep…..”

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  5. ❀ silver ❀ πŸ˜€

    sterling silver + turquoise = the perfect match…

    ….as in Native American jewelry !

    vintage Navajo ….

    vintage Hopi

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    1. something about sterling silver that is naturally elegant…yet can be worn anytime, anywhere without being ostentatious or gawdy or “too flashy”….

      our Native Americans were… and still are… marvelous artisans with silver & precious stones…and their gorgeous handiwork will last for generations…in all kinds of weather conditions…and in water, if you happen to be under water a lot, lol…

      and if you need to shine it up a little, just rub a little baking soda with a damp soft cloth on the silver, then buff it, for a beautiful lustrous shine !


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  6. what an unfortunate twit !

    meet Mark Galli

    …editor-in-chief of Christianity Today magazine…and so-called “evangelical” …

    and here’s his recent absurd editorial where he called for PDJT’s removal from office…

    Trump Should Be Removed From Office

    Dec 19, 2019

    …and even though his nonsense seems endearing to the Lefties and the NeverTrumpers, he has also created “intense fallout” in PDJT’s loyal camp…


    Put A Sock In It, Mr Galli

    Dec 23, 2019

    article is in reference to the noxious drek by Galli calling for removal from office for “profoundly immoral” use of PDJT’s political power to “coerce a foreign leader to harass and discredit one of the president’s political opponents.”

    not everybody’s impressed…like Franklin Graham, a Trump supporter and son of the magazine’s original founder, Billy Graham….and Jerry Falwell, Jr….and former NRA spokeswoman Dana Loesch.

    much more about the absurdity in the article.

    and, imo, seems Galli, in all his sanctimonious piety & judgmental nonsense, has forgotten a few important, relevant and imperfect men who were used successfully by GOD…

    …these 10 come to mind…


    …just sayin.


  7. New Jersey Rep. Jeff Van Drew speaks out for first time after switching parties…

    …and here’s an interesting article to read after watching the above…

    We Three Kings of America Are : Soros , Steyer and Bloomberg

    from Dec 17, 2019

    The biggest lie in American politics today is that Republicans are the party of the wealthy elite, and the Democrats are fighting for the little guy.

    FTA : “They want to match voter data to consumer information and social-media…and look for new ways to break through. Then they want to build a new ‘tech stack’, a system for processing and applying data. The goal, they say internally, is to fundamentally change the core Democratic infrastructure.”

    and…: “The faith of the Three Kings has no relevance to the fact that they’re trying to buy the 2020 election , just like they tried to buy the 2018 election, nor should it prevent anyone from calling attention to what they’re doing.”

    Soros , the most powerful and richest, manages to fly under the radar…interesting reading on him in the article…

    good read on all of them.

    …as the illegals line up for driver’s licenses…


  8. And of course silver appeared–and still does appear, believe it or not, in US coins.

    The first standard for federal coinage was based on an assay of assorted Spanish coins. Those circulated extensively in the Colonies because Britain didn’t want money made for the colonies (the idea was for the colonies to make the homeland money), and that continued in the United States. There was a large “piece of 8” Spanish coin, also called the pillar dollar, and we basically based our dollar on that.

    A bunch of them were assayed and were found to be 1485/1664ths pure. So that’s the standard that was written into our first coinage act. A dollar was to consist of 371.25 grains of silver in a coin weighing 416 grains (multiply both numbers by four to get the fraction I just showed you).

    Imagine being at the mint and having to make that mixture. At least with gold, it was 22 karat; so they were mixing 11 parts gold to 1 part alloy (silver and copper); but with silver they had to mix 1485 parts silver with 179 parts alloy. This was such a pain in the ass the mint initially broke the law and simply mixed a 9-1 ratio. People depositing silver at the mint for coining therefore got slightly purer coins than expected…but they also got fewer of them. The former was hard to see, the latter was quite easy to see. This caused a bit of a scandal. But recently someone actually did a destructive assay of some 1794 and 1795 coins (yikes!!! expensive!) and demonstrated that the mint was almost certainly aiming for .900 fine, not .8924+ fine.

    Anyhow, the mint straightened up and used the correct standard, but another act in January 1837, just before Andrew Jackson left office, reduced the amount of copper in the silver coinage. A dollar still contained 371.25 grains of silver, but now the total weight would be 412.5 grains, making the coin .900 fine.

    In 1853, the California gold rush had introduced so much gold into the economy that silver became expensive relative to gold, and the silver coinage was now worth more than face value. It disappeared from circulation. Congress greatly reduced the weight of all silver coins (other than the dollar) that year, and they returned to circulating. However, because they were now worth less than face value, it was no longer possible to simply bring silver to the mint to have it coined, you’d be turning less than a dollar’s worth of silver into a dollar face value. (Up to this time the mint coined anyone’s silver for a nominal fee, as a public service.) With the dollar coin itself unchanged, a dollar’s worth of the other denominations would now 384 grains of 90 percent silver (not 412.5) or 345.6 grains of the actual metal.

    In 1873 the weight was slightly increased (again, for everything but the silver dollar)…but now the coins had an exact weight in grams, not grains; a dollars worth of the other silver denominations weighed 25 grams.

    This continued until 1964.

    The dollar was discontinued in 1873, and replaced with a slightly heavier “trade dollar” of 416 grains. This was to match the weight of the Mexican peso, so that it would be more eagerly accepted by Chinese merchants. (Before that, traders had to buy pesos and pay a hefty fee to the moneychangers.) This ended in 1878 even though it seemed to work well.

    In 1964, of course, the silver disappeared from the dime and quarter; the half dollar became 90% silver clad on a core of much lower grade silver, net 40% silver. Between that and the fact that Kennedy was on the half dollar, no one would spend them any more and they disappeared from circulation. The silver was removed from the half dollar in 1970, but it never really did circulate (I saw a few in those years, as a kid).

    Through the early 1970s the mint issued 40% silver Ike dollars for collectors, then there were 40% silver bicentennial quarters, halves and dollars, again special for collectors. After that silver disappeared completely from the scene until we started making commemorative coins again in 1982 (to celebrate George Washington’s 250th birthday). In 1986 we began issuing the silver eagles (and still do so today); in 1992 (I think) the mint started making silver proof sets with the half, quarter and dime at 90% silver. They’re still doing that today, however, very recently they’ve gone to pure silver–a historical booboo in my opinion.

    Silver, of course, makes a very different sound when it hits a hard surface than the clad crap we spend. It also has a distinctly lighter color. So it should be easy to spot when you are lucky enough to get one in your change.

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