[Enamel Bits] Regarding Enamel Repair

I have been enameling for over 25 years. I also do the scary
…and not very lucrative job …of repairing enamels. There are
many things to consider when taking on a repair job of

–Is it really enamel or epoxy or Ceramit? Real hard fired
enamel will be dissolved in hydroflouric acid- a very dangerous

–Are there any solder seams and what does it appear to have
been soldered with ? Most hard fired enamels require soldering
with IT or hard solder in order to stay together when enameled.

–Can I match the color?? I usually try to match the color as
closely as possible with my color chart and my enamels and then
completely remove all the enamel in the piece and start over.

–If the piece does not have a chip out that goes all the way
down to the metal base, the piece can sometimes just be heated up
to reflow. Most hard fired enamels fire between 1350-1500
degrees. Be sure the piece is real clean–into an ultrasonic and
glass brushed- to remove any impurities like years of body oils.
Glass has pores.

–Am I charging enough to make this angst worthwhile or should I
just say no? Most enamel repair is a leap of faith. I love to see
a good repair done on an 18ky gold antique Italian made piece. I
feel like I am talking to a craftsman over years and
oceans…but these are rare experiences. Most just want Aunt
Mary’s Catholic pin to have a new pin back!!

Oh…I am not soliciting any more work–I have a hard enough
time saying no in Houston! Good Luck, Jan

Hello Jan, This is a very important bit of for you
and all enamelists. There is a product for you to try. I have
absolutely no financial interest in any products of any kind. I’m
just an old bench jeweler. I recently discovered a product for
dissolving the investment from platinum castings. When I recieved
it, the label said it was a substitute for hydroflouric acid.
Since I have seen the sores caused by hydroflouric, I was very
interested in a substitute. It is wonderful for platinum
investment. I began experimenting with this stuff on enamel. IT
DISSOLVES ENAMEL. It is so much safer than hydroflouric acid that
I wish I could tell every single enamelist and platinum caster on
the planet. The product is Super-Strip it. I bought a plastic
bottle of it from National Keystone Products Co. 800-333-3131 for
about 16.00 including shipping. They even included a jar of acid
nuetralizer. Other companies might sell this great stuff. This
company seems to be a dental tool supplyhouse. Try this right
away. Tom Arnold