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Fabrication of 14K Gold bezel

Howdy All,

After plenty of work with sterling, I decided to try some fabrication
with 14kt. I am attempting to solder a 14kt bezel onto sterling. The
problem I am having is the 14kt has too much spring. I tried
annealing in hopes that it would soften it somewhat, but that did not
help. The piece I am trying to bezel is on the larger size (1"x1
1/2") and angular. I can’t get the bezel to maintain the shape of the
piece. Any suggestions would be appreciated. Also, what is the
preferred solder to use–silver or gold for this application?

Thank you in advance,

Apparently you have yet to grasp the concept of gold annealing and
how to treat different Karats. you must heat to dull cherry for 14 k
and then quench in alcohol after the red dissapears. if you allow it
to air cool it aligns the molecules as before, quenching after the
red dissapears mean you will have maximun space between atoms at
that point! 10kt is more redness when you quench as the atoms are
more mixed in lower alloys and the critical stop will cause cracking
if you quench to fast or soon. alcohol being the prefered quench as
it dissapates heat faster with less shock. the higher the karat the
longer you wait till quench as the atoms are more consistant and
hold the red inside longer. when you are heating the metal coat with
boric acid and alcohol to reduce firescale. Then heat till you see
the metal relax holding the bezel shape is not important at this
point. the other way to get this accomplished is to make sure your
bezel is exact and then solder. quench in alcohol immediately after
hard solder flow. then strech over stone and solder to silver. use
silver solder as gold will create utetic and that will interfere
with solder flow!

Hope it helps ya
John Henry

Hello Ketar,

May I suggest that you use a higher karet gold. 18K bezels are Sooooo
much easier to work with and check out the melting point - 18K is
just more forgiving than 14K and I love the richer color.

Judy in Kansas

When I first started using gold I did the same thing. I could not,
for the life of me get the spring out of the 14k bezel. Hence I now
use 22k bezel and love it. It’s very pliable, great to work with,
and beautiful to look at. I have used 18k with success but prefer
22k. As far as wire work and sheet I use 18k. I’ve pretty much
banished 14k gold from my studio. (Since I’m the only one working
there is wasn’t a problem! :-))

Lisa Hawthorne