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Electroplating agate slices in gold/silver


Hi there,

I am interested in electroplating around the sides of an agate slice
in gold and silver (separately) but I’m not entirely sure of the
process on a natural object and whether the object needs to be
electroplated in another metal first or not? i haven’t actually
electroplated before and i am struggling to find on the
internet. can anyone explain the general process of electroplating a
natural object to me? or point me in the direction of where i can

Thank you!


note - I haven’t done this myself.

I can think of at least 2 ways to do this, in theory

sputter coating a conductive layer - carbon, aluminium, gold

electroless coating with tin/silver.

and then electroplating using conventional techniques…

but I will leave it up to more experienced members to provide actual


You may want to look at some videos on electro forming. There is also
a great DVD on electroforming. This will get you moving in the right
direction for electro forming.

Easy Electroforming for Jewelry, DVD item #: 560690

Best regards,

Phillip Scott
Technical Support Specialist
Rio Grande


I have electroplated insects in class before. (In copper though so
i’m unsure what you would need for other metals). First Step is
using a conductive paint and cover the area you want to electroform.
For insects we skewered themwith a copper wire and then connected
that to the current. For pendants I am guessing attach a jump ring
to the painted area and then attach the jump ring to the electrical

Hope this helps a little :slight_smile:



Do a Google search on “electroforming crystals” You’ll find videos
and instructions galore. Jerry