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CA's Lead-Containing Jewelry Law


#1

I recently learned about a California lead in jewelry law
http://tinyurl.com/2bemhj that will affect anyone selling in or to
California. Does this mean that, in the future, we will have to be
able to show proof that our materials either don’t contain lead or
contain small enough amounts to fit the guidelines?

Kirsten Skiles
http://knitsteel.com
http://knitsteel.blogspot.com


#2
I recently learned about a California lead in jewelry law
http://tinyurl.com/2bemhj that will affect anyone selling in or to
California. Does this mean that, in the future, we will have to be
able to show proof that our materials either don't contain lead or
contain small enough amounts to fit the guidelines? 

After reading this I still don’t know. Jewelry falls into Class 1
and cloisonne is listed there. Does this mean that we will not be
able to use leaded enamels in our jewelry if we sell in CA?

jennifer friedman
http://www.jenniferfriedmanstudio.com


#3

“other” Jewelry (not body piercing or children’s) can be made from
any of the class 1, 2 or 3 materials, some of which contain lead. The
key is that it can’t contain more than the specified amount of lead.
With regard to leaded enamels, the way they’ve framed the argument it
sounds like the key is whether the lead can be leached out of the
piece by wearing, licking, swallowing, etc. As I understand the
process, while some of the lead burns off in the enameling process
(hence the need for appropriate ventilation and inhalation
protection), the remaining lead is bound in the glass, similarly to
leaded crystal. There have been studies that show lead leaching out
of leaded crystal into red wine, for example, so the key “should” be
the content level of “accessible” lead in the enamel. My
recommendation would be to contact the DTSC and specifically ask
them. Please let us know what you find out!

Karen Goeller


#4

Do we as makers need to be able to show “certificates” or proof from
our suppliers that our materials do not contain lead, or over the
designated amount of lead? Or, are we not required to show proof
unless someone decides to test our jewelry and claim that it
contains lead? I work primarily in copper, bronze, steel, and
silver. I should be able to get an msds or other statement of alloy
content from my suppliers.

How are the big suppliers responding to this, like Rio Grande or
Ottofrei (located in CA)? Are they prepared to offer their customers
some sort of assurance that the supplies we buy to use in jewelry
conform to the law in CA?

Kirsten
http://knitsteel.com


#5

I have spent the afternoon searching the California website and
calling different offices asking for help interpreting this amendment
to the H&SC.

Long story short, there is no one who will take the time to help
interpret this and it was suggested to me that we try to see if an
attorney in our group would read and interpret this law.

Is there an attorney member of ganoksin who can do this?

Health and Safety Code Section 25214.1-25214.4.2
http://tinyurl.com/2lb3lj

Thanks
J. S. (Sue) Ellington
432-557-8785
http://www.jseenameljewelry.com


#6

Hi Sue,

I am not an attorney and new to this industry - but what I do for a
living is help businesses interpret this stuff and maintain
compliance with the reg’s once we figure 'em out.

Here is what I get from this HS Code:

On or after March 1, 2008 - you can’t sell, manufacture, ship -
jewelry in CA unless it’s made from a class 1, class 2, or class 3
material or any combo of those 3. (Description of those materials
below)

(1) "Class 1 material" means any of the following materials: 

(A) Stainless or surgical steel. 

(B) Karat gold. 

(C) Sterling silver. 

(D) Platinum, palladium, iridium, ruthenium, rhodium, or osmium.


(E) Natural or cultured pearls. 

(F) Glass, ceramic, or crystal decorative components, including
cat's eye, cubic zirconia, including cubic zirconium or CZ,
rhinestones, and cloisonne. 

(G) A gemstone that is cut and polished for ornamental purposes,
except as provided in paragraph (2). 

(H) Elastic, fabric, ribbon, rope, or string, unless it contains
intentionally added lead and is listed as a class 2 material. 

(I) All natural decorative material, including amber, bone,
coral, feathers, fur, horn, leather, shell, wood, that is in its
natural state and is not treated in a way that adds lead. 

(J) Adhesive. 

(2) The following gemstones are not class 1 materials:
aragonite, bayldonite, boleite, cerussite, crocoite, ekanite,
linarite, mimetite, phosgenite, samarskite, vanadinite, and
wulfenite. 

(f) "Class 2 material" means any of the following materials: 

(1) Electroplated metal that meets the following standards: 

(A) On and before August 30, 2009, a metal alloy with less than
10 percent lead by weight that is electroplated with suitable
under and finish coats. 

(B) On and after August 31, 2009, a metal alloy with less than 6
percent lead by weight that is electroplated with suitable under
and finish coats. 

(2) Unplated metal with less than 1.5 percent lead that is not
otherwise listed as a class 1 material. 

(3) Plastic or rubber, including acrylic, polystyrene, plastic
beads and stones, and polyvinyl chloride (PVC) that meets the
following standards: 

(A) On and before August 30, 2009, less than 0.06 percent (600
parts per million) lead by weight. 

(B) On and after August 31, 2009, less than 0.02 percent (200
parts per million) lead by weight. 

(4) A dye or surface coating containing less than 0.06 percent
(600 parts per million) lead by weight. 

(g) "Class 3 material" means any portion of jewelry that meets
both of the following criteria: 

(1) Is not a class 1 or class 2 material. 

(2) Contains less than 0.06 percent (600 parts per million) lead
by weight. 

ALSO - the reg. states you can't sell for new body piercing
anything that is not made from: 

1) Surgical implant stainless steel. 

(2) Surgical implant grade of titanium. 

(3) Niobium (Nb). 

(4) Solid 14 karat or higher white or yellow nickel-free gold. 

(5) Solid platinum. 

(6) A dense low-porosity plastic, including, but not limited to,
Tygon or Polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE), if the plastic contains
no intentionally added lead. 

Then regulation continues in describing the EPA approved methods for
testing for lead content and let’s us know the penalties for not
adhering to the law are civil in nature and that the max fine is
$2500.00 per day per violation.

There is no on how they will enforce this reg. SO - it is
therefore assumed that people will self police - know the regulation
and comply.

SO now I ask the “newbie” question - is there lead in our solders? If
we request MSDS (Material Safety Data Sheets) we’d know right? I have
MSDS for welding rods so we should get them for solders too I think.
If there is lead in them - the % of that based on the total weight of
the piece will be less than.06% - I believe.

Just a stab at it - let’s see what else folks come up with or if I am
the only crazy person who likes to try to interpret this stuff!

Kelley


#7

Connie

Regarding lead in solders, I wonder how I can find out if some
copper I have is soldered with lead. I have 3 old solar panels that
were used to heat a swimming pool-- the kind that are solid copper–
with the copper pipes removed. These pipes that ran parallel to the
longer side of the copper sheets were soldered on.

My husband removed them with a big torch outside, and sanded the
sheet. Now I have lots of AWG (B&S) 26 gauge reclaimed, patinated
copper, and in stripes where the solder was (is) is a very pleasing
pattern of metal colors. How do I find out how much, if any, lead is
in the thin silvery part of the surface? Where do I start?

Thanks for any replies.
Connie L.
www.papayani.com


#8

Hi Connie

Find a local lab - the yellow pages will have one. Tell them what
you want to test for (lead) and they will tell you how to prepare the
sample - they’ll probably have you do some scraping and have you put
it in to a clean bottle. They can also discuss percentages with you
in parts per billion or million depending on what you’ve got. It
shouldn’t cost too much for one sample.

Sounds like some interesting stuff…!

Good luck!
Kelley


#9

Gentle Friends–

Don’t forget the PQRS law (Politics means QueeR Science). New
piercing jewelry must be 14K or higher NICKLE-FREE solid gold or
surgical implant stainless steel, most of which alloys contain
between 6 and 35% NICKLE!

Go figure!!

Dr. Mac


#10

Hi Dr Mac,

Hows it going? I noticed that little zinger in the bill when I went
to read it and wondered if anyone in the jewelry industry had been
consulted about it before it was passed.

You know I used to wonder about that same question with the European
nickel laws. Then last year I heard a presentation from a fellow who
is with the Birmingham Assay Office in the UK about nickel release
from jewelry metals. It turns out that most of the stainless alloys
used for jewelry (304, 316 and a couple of others) keep the nickel
locked up in solution and will not release it into the body, gold-
nickel alloys however do not keep the nickel in solution so it is
free to be dissolved by and absorbed into the body. So if you were to
test for nickel release like the EU requires you would find that many
stainless alloys show no nickel release.

Now I don’t know if the folks who drafted this new California law
were aware of the results of the European studies on this (I doubt
it) or someone just heard that nickel white gold was bad (much more
likely) and decided to insert the ban on nickel white gold into the
bill addressing lead.

The end result is going to be a major headache for the jewelers in
and selling into CA if the state decides to enforce this because it
is virtually impossible to find white gold posts or wires in the US
that are not the nickel white alloy.

Regards,

Jim

James Binnion
@James_Binnion
James Binnion Metal Arts


360-756-6550


#11
Don't forget the PQRS law (Politics means QueeR Science). New
piercing jewelry must be 14K or higher NICKLE-FREE solid gold or
surgical implant stainless steel, most of which alloys contain
between 6 and 35% NICKLE! 

The particular reason implant grade stainless is in this bunch is
particularly due to the ASTM F-138 standard for implant grade
stainless steel. The ASTM has tested and deemed this particular alloy
of stainless to be the most Bio-Compatible of all stainless steel
alloys, even though the alloy does contain 13-15% Nickle by
composition, no more and no less Nickle content…otherwise it would
not conform to the ASTM standard. This particular material has to be
ordered specifically to meet this standard, material certifications
are also given with this upon request.

From the ASTM F-138 Standard for Implant Grade Stainless Steel

Section X2. Biocompatibility reads as follows 

X2.1 The material composition covered by this specification has
been employed successfully in human implant applications in
contact with soft tissue and bone for over a decade. Due to the
well characterized level of local biological response established
by this material, it has been used as a control material in
Practice F 981 

X2.1 No known surgical implant material has ever been shown to
be completely free of adverse reactions in the human body.
However, long term clinical experience has shone an acceptable
level of biological response can be expected, if the material is
used in appropriate applications. 

Also, this is a lead free resolution they are passing, not a nickle
free resolution like they have in Europe.

Happy Holidays,
P@
www.patpruitt.com


#12

Hi

I just looked up the text of the bill on the California DTSC site.
Nop big deal it references body piercing jewelry only…

As follows, unless I missed another nickel reference?

© Notwithstanding subdivision (a), on and after March 1, 2008, a
person shall not manufacture, ship, sell, or offer for sale body
piercing jewelry for retail sale in the state unless the body
piercing jewelry is made of one or more of the following materials:

(1) Surgical implant stainless steel.

(2) Surgical implant grade of titanium.

(3) Niobium (Nb).

(4) Solid 14 karat or higher white or yellow nickel-free gold.

(5) Solid platinum.

(6) A dense low-porosity plastic, including, but not limited to,
Tygon or Polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE), if the plastic contains no
intentionally added lead.


#13
Also, this is a lead free resolution they are passing, not a
nickle free resolution like they have in Europe. 

There is a misconception that the EU law is nickel free or no
nickel. It actually is low or no nickel release. There is a test that
is preformed on the object and the amount of nickel released by the
item over a period of time is analyzed. As long as the amount of
nickel released is below the threshold limit it can be sold in the EU
regardless of the percentage of nickel content in the item.

With respect to the CA law I thought it was a strange thing to add
to a lead law but it is the modus operandi of US politicians to
attach pet items to legislation to slip them through under the radar.

Regards,

Jim

James Binnion
@James_Binnion
James Binnion Metal Arts


360-756-6550


#14
I just looked up the text of the bill on the California DTSC site.
Nop big deal it references body piercing jewelry only...

Think ear posts, earrings etc.

James Binnion


#15
I just looked up the text of the bill on the California DTSC site.
Nop big deal it references body piercing jewelry only... 
Think ear posts, earrings etc. 

For the body piercing aspect, this is specific for jewelry to be
used for NEW piercings. This is inclusive of all jewelry for
starter earrings you find at the mall. Most of the jewelers here
on Orchid dont fall into this catagory, but all other jewelry to be
placed in healed piercings (earrings) are covered by the general
regulation.

Dont be mislead, this bill covers ALL jewelry that is going to be
next to the skin. Actually any and all jewelry period…

There is a misconception that the EU law is nickel free or no
nickel. It actually is low or no nickel release. There is a test
that is preformed on the object and the amount of nickel released
by the item over a period of time is analyzed. As long as the
amount of nickel released is below the threshold limit it can be
sold in the EU regardless of the percentage of nickel content in
the item. 

True dat. Sorry I was just generalizing with my statement about
nickle free.

P