What's the best gold alloy to work on?

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Thread starter #1
Hi all, hope you’ll are keeping well. I have been engraving on silver for the past few months and now am planning to start working on gold. I was wondering if there’s any alloy thats preferable to engrave on? The primary quality i am looking for is that it keeps its shine/ doesn’t tarnish over time. I know gold is stable, but if its alloyed with silver does it tarnish over time? Some of my pieces have incredibly fine lines that get damaged/ start to erase with polish, and i live in India where humidity and pollution are high, which is why I am looking for something more stable. And a secondary quality I am looking for is softness. I am planning on working on 18kt yellow gold. Do you think that's fine or a higher purity would work better? Please let me know if you have any knowledge on this. Thanks
 

Chujybear

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#2
depending on the alloy of 18, it can actually be the worst.. if it is a pure copper alloy, it may be brittle and crumbly, pure silver it looks kind of green and wan, but will inlay better.
higher the karat the better.. depending on the alloy
 

jerrywh

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I used a lot of gold alloy but all the alloy I use is nothing but pure silver and 24K gold. If there is ANY Copper in it it will tarnish. Pure silver alloys are very soft. Alloys that tarnish can be coated with Cerakote clear and will last indefinitely. there is no known solvent that will remove Cerakote.
 
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Thread starter #5
I used a lot of gold alloy but all the alloy I use is nothing but pure silver and 24K gold. If there is ANY Copper in it it will tarnish. Pure silver alloys are very soft. Alloys that tarnish can be coated with Cerakote clear and will last indefinitely. there is no known solvent that will remove Cerakote.
Thanks for this. I have been doing something similar on my silver engravings- coating them with epoxy resin but ceramic coating is something else worth looking into. Do you have any idea how the finish looks? If it looks glossy and plasticy (which I think would make it look cheap)

What kind of things do you engrave with 24kt? I’m only asking because I am planning to do stuff with about 0.7mm thickness, which I would imagine would bend and warp very easily if it is in 24kt
 

Chujybear

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#6
Thanks for this. I have been doing something similar on my silver engravings- coating them with epoxy resin but ceramic coating is something else worth looking into. Do you have any idea how the finish looks? If it looks glossy and plasticy (which I think would make it look cheap)

What kind of things do you engrave with 24kt? I’m only asking because I am planning to do stuff with about 0.7mm thickness, which I would imagine would bend and warp very easily if it is in 24kt
They are in laying w 24... .7 is fine for 22 and lower... you will want 1mm or more if you are using 24, depending on the shape, or if it’s got structure, or substrate.
 

jerrywh

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Thanks for this. I have been doing something similar on my silver engravings- coating them with epoxy resin but ceramic coating is something else worth looking into. Do you have any idea how the finish looks? If it looks glossy and plasticy (which I think would make it look cheap)

What kind of things do you engrave with 24kt? I’m only asking because I am planning to do stuff with about 0.7mm thickness, which I would imagine would bend and warp very easily if it is in 24kt
I don't think I would like the apoxy coating either for the reasons you stated. But Cerkote has some coatings that are matte finish and you can even mix the gloss with the matte to obtain the finish you want. I is expensive but anything great is. Cheap is cheap looking.
Years ago Ron Smith did some great guns that were coated with bake on matte lacquer. However since then the Gov. has ruined tha bake on lacquers and they no longer work. They will scratch off with your fingernail. Cerakote won't do that. After it hardens all you can do is sand it off.
 
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Thread starter #9
I don't think I would like the apoxy coating either for the reasons you stated. But Cerkote has some coatings that are matte finish and you can even mix the gloss with the matte to obtain the finish you want. I is expensive but anything great is. Cheap is cheap looking.
Years ago Ron Smith did some great guns that were coated with bake on matte lacquer. However since then the Gov. has ruined tha bake on lacquers and they no longer work. They will scratch off with your fingernail. Cerakote won't do that. After it hardens all you can do is sand it off.
Great, thanks for this. I agree that generally spending money on good 'ingredients' will make things look good.
 
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