The Internet is a BIG place. Unlimited resources, quick answers at your fingertips, and a never-ending supply of opinions. We've done some hunting and have gathered some interesting questions jewelers from around the globe are asking:
1. Can you engrave on Tungsten? The short answer is yes. The difficulty in engraving tungsten carbide arises from the hardness of the material (over 10x's the hardness of 18kt gold!). The hardness that makes tungsten the most scratch resistant metal in the world can also damage traditional engraving tools. So instead, a laser is commonly used.
2. Anyone know where to get a good rose gold plating bath solution? We may be biased, but we find that the Legor Pink Bath Plating solution does a great job. From Andy the Tool Guy: "By manipulating the time soaked and the voltage, you can essentially get any shade of rose you want from a lighter peach to a darker pink."
3. What do you typically put your repair jobs in when you give it back to the customers? You definitely want to include some anti-tarnish tissue paper as part of the presentation in the repair envelope or bag.
4. I have a pair of black Tahitian pearl earrings, I believe undyed, that has a 14k backing that needs to be removed. I know the adhesive used was a two-part epoxy; can epoxy dissolver be used safely in this case? I've noticed Rio's version of epoxy remover says it can't be used on maybe pearls, which has made me a little cautious in this case. Is there a safer alternative? You can accomplish this by using a q-tip and nail polish remover.
5. I am trying to find out if anyone out there has a good technique for "re-flattening" sheet metal after you have worked with it already? By work I mean, texturing, snipping, hammering, sawing, etc. I have tried annealing / re-annealing the metal I am trying to flatten. Then using a rubber dead blow hammer on a flat surface. Also putting the metal between a steel bench block and a rubber bench block and trying to pound it back flat again that way. I have also tried using a very old "rolling mill" to re-flatten the metal, but my mill is off calibration so this does not seem to work either? A good rolling mill will do the trick. You can also try hammering the metal on a sand bag.
6. I am interested in gold-plating a ring I've made. The ring has 4 large prongs and will hold a cabochon ruby that has been filled but I don't know the exact detail. If I gold plate the ring before I set the stone, I risk the plating cracking on the prongs when they are bent to hold the stone in place. This happened to another of my rings that is set with carnelian. Time will tell what happens with the cracked plating. My question is, is it safe to subject a treated ruby to plating? I know that diamonds do fine and organic stones like coral will be damaged. You are 100% correct, you can't plate a ring and then go back and set the stone because you'll crack or texture the plating. Try this instead. After setting the stone, paint the entire stone evenly with red fingernail polish. Make the the stone is coated completely and with enough density. Then plate the piece and remove the masking with fingernail polish remover and a cotton ball or q-tip.
7. When melting Sterlium Silver, is it important to have a separate crucible for it or can one use the same crucible for melting 925 Sterling? Always use a separate crucible for each metal.
8. Folks are saying it's not a good idea to set an expensive stone in silver because it's too soft. What if the bezel or prongs were gold or platinum and the rest of the piece is silver. Would that work? Yes, that could work. But try using our Continuum Sterling Silver known for its strength and the security it can provide for precious stones.
Do you have something else on your mind? Let us know and we'll find you the right answer!