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New to white gold, help needed

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  • New to white gold, help needed

    Hi folks. I'm working on my first piece in white gold. I had assumed it was going to be the same as working with silver or yellow gold and so far haven't found any noticeable differences. However, now I've got to the point of heating it for soldering purposes I see that the white gold looks distinctly yellowish. Will this polish off or have I not had it in the pickle long enough?
    Also, will it have to be rhodium plated once finished? And is that done before or after hallmarking?
    Also is there anyone in the Birmingham JQ who does rhodium plating?
    Many thanks in advance for any replies, I know your time is as precious as your materials.

  • #2
    Hi. *waving*

    If you've worked with gold before you should be ok, and from your post it sounds like you're doing just fine. The thing about white gold is, it's not actually white.......

    "I see that the white gold looks distinctly yellowish. Will this polish off or have I not had it in the pickle long enough?"

    Gold is - and always will be - yellow. The colour of it can be changed slightly with the addition of other metals (typically copper for red gold and silver for white) but a yellow hue will always remain. It's a common misconception that the "white" of commercially produced white gold is its natural colour, but that comes from the rhodium it is plated with. Over time this plating wears off and I have lost count of the number of people who have asked me to polish their jewellery to make it white again, only to be bitterly disappointed when I tell them polishing won't change the colour, and may even make it worse as it could remove even more of the plating.

    "Also, will it have to be rhodium plated once finished? And is that done before or after hallmarking?"

    It doesn't HAVE to be plated, no. However, if your customer is expecting what they've seen in shop windows then it's probably a good idea. Why not speak to them and explain, see what they say?
    If you do end up having it plated I would recommend doing it after hallmarking as the hallmarking process is likely to remove any plating already applied, particularly if you have laser marks.
    As for if there's anyone in the JQ who does it, I personally don't know of anyone but I'm sure there will be. Alan will more than likely be able to give you an answer to that one.

    Hope this helps.
    Last edited by wiccanwear; 09-07-2019, 10:43 AM.
    Wiccan Wear - Creator of the unusual and extraordinary

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    • #3
      Hi Wiccanwear, that was very helpful, thank you very much.

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