Back to Ganoksin | FAQ | Contact

Copper in 14K melt


#1

I checked the archives, but didn’t find any info relating
specifically to this situation. I have little experience with golds,
but a friend encouraged me to melt down some of her old 14K chains
for her. I melted them into a ball on a soldering board, with paste
flux, using a Smith actylene/air torch. The result was very light
colored, with obvious discoloration on the surface that looks like
copper patches. This persisted after pickling and rolling. Can it be
rectified? How can I avoid this in the future? Obviously, there are
unknowns in the equation, since I don’t know what the components of
the alloy are. I’d like to do more of this in the future; with gold
so high, this provides good material for a learning curve. Any
suggestions?

Lisa W.


#2

As I’ve discovered, melting down chains with a view to using the
gold for another purpose is not a good idea, due to the solder
content of the metal. Every link in those chains has some amount of
solder holding it closed and this contaminates your metal. If you try
to reuse it, you’ll most likely have problems with brittleness or
porosity, etc. The only thing really is to send it for refining with
the rest of your solder-containing scrap and exchange it for fresh
gold.

Helen
UK