As promised, here is Part 2 of the armature build! Part 1 here. Click images to embiggen.
Measure how long you need your rod to be (be sure to add the diameter of the brass bead to your rod length or include it in the total length). Place the rod on that measurement and mark it with a sharpie.
Place the rod in your vise and hold one end with a helping hands. Then you can cut off the length of rod you need using a reinforced cutting wheel on a Dremel, or using a hacksaw.
I put several beads between the joint plate I made previously and put them into the vise with their holes aligned facing straight up (I used a spare drill bit to carefully align the beads).
Start drilling out the beads through the pre-existing hole. Only drill through the top hole. I started with a 3/32″ bit, moved up to a 7/64″ bit, and then finally a 1/8″ bit, this reduced the number of beads that were damaged during drilling.
Put several very small bits of 4% silver solder (rosin core) into the bead and fit the rod into the hole of the bead. I lightly shook the assembly while slowly applying pressure to the rod until it slide all the way to the opposite end without pinching any solder pieces. The rod was then placed in a helping hands and heated with a propane torch for several seconds (between 5-10 seconds) to melt the solder. I left the barbell to air cool to create a stronger bond than quenching would give.
This is a single completed joint after the barbell cooled enough to put it inside the joints made in part 1!
I cut a 3/4″ piece of brass plate and cut grooves in it with a round file for the barbells.
The barbells were laid into the grooves and small bits of solder set next to them. The entire assembly was heated trying not to put direct heat on the solder until the solder liquified and flowed into the join.
Here is the finished armature completely assembled!