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Gold edge ring

photo of a gold edge ring by the late Charles Duncan

how is this gold edge applied to the reticulated silver ring? (text
says gold is 14k)

thank you:


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I did this once in graduate school by applying wax to a finished
piece and then casting the whole thing again. The first piece must
have a highermelting temp than the material the wax will be cast in.

I had to drill tiny holes in the first piece for the wax to fill.
That acted like tiny rivets to hold the second material on. Whenever
I did not drill the “rivet” holes, the second material just fell off
after casting it all the second time. 

That is not reticulated silver… like, so NOT reticulation. Please go
to Harold O’Connor’s website.

He also teaches. I have taken his workshops.

Reticulation looks like what mountains look like when you see them
from a plane from the sky.

We make a lot of two tone jewelry. We both cast and fabricate. The
piece pictured looks cast.

Just carve and cast or fabricate one part. Then spray with mold
release spray. Add wax for the second part, Remove the wax and cast.
Then solder the two together.

I have tried to cast one lower temp metal directly onto the first
casting, but don’t get good bond. I have to still solder the two
together. It can be tough to do when there is oxidation and
investment between the two metals from the casting process. That is
why I prefer to cast separately and then solder together later. Much
easier to clean up to get a good join.

By the way… another point I would like to make about this piece.
The piece pictured was badly finished on the inside. I can still see
some very crude file marks with no attempt to clean it up.

I appreciate the rough textural look of the piece. However when ever
I make something with a rough texture I ALWAYS finish the inside and
edges to a mirror perfect polish. Why? To show that the exterior
texture was a gesture of design and not laziness in finishing.

Have fun and make lots of jewelry

Jo Haemer

First I agree with other respondents- this is not reticulated
silver- I don’t think it’s shibuichi either (another alloy that has a
high copper content).In fact it looks like ordinary sterling This
looks like -since it is so porous-they cast a silver ring and added
some wax (crudely) and then cast the gold, and probably used a 9-12
karat alloy for a lower flow temp of the metal for the second casting
OR the person just heated up some wire solder and hoped for the best
as it relates to a good bond where the gold edge is.

I make a lot of pieces (rings primarily) with a gold edge- I inlay a
wire of whatever colour and karat I like that day (or have a piece
of scrap wire or sizing stock !) using a few bits of plumb solder so
I don’t have to create a “rivet” or drill into the base piece to
create a good bond. I use the Foredom master AllSet kit to mill a
little “shelf” around the edge for the wire to sit on and the
paillions to go. If I have a wavy edge often I use a sharp polished
graver to incise the fine silver band and then just tap the metal
around the edge to hold the gold in place- I have never had an inlaid
wire fall out. yet!

I tried to take a picture of the ring I’m wearing to demonstrate but
it didn’t seem to flash or attach- I’ll try again after checking the
driver). rer

original thread was—gold edge ring thank you to those who

Hans Meevis, I will order your tutorial, (I have long been a fan of
your work, very very creative.)

I found another page of the late Charles Duncan work:

The pieces appear to be castings, with the gold applied to the

Perhaps the non-gold parts are masked and the gold parts
electroplated? If so, could you legally say 14K gold? (I don’t think

Jo, and R. Rourke: The techniques you described would work. But, for
these price points, (not expensive)these were probably done

*Is it possible mr, Duncan discovered a method, most jewelers. find
almost impossible? (this info from the gallery page.

linkI think probably not.) sadly, we can’t ask him. He has
passed away.*

thanks, Cusn

According to the on that site, Mr. Duncan fuses a gold
wire or rod to the silver edges.

As for the crystalline silver being "strong flexible and will not
break " such that you can “mould it to one’s shape”, I rather doubt
that you could bend and shape repeatedly without cracking and

Years ago, I received one of these pendants as a gift. Your question
had me thinking perhaps the gold wire was applied as in granulation
so I pulled it out to see. The piece was fabricated, not cast. The
"gold" border looks like it were a lower melting alloy (perhaps
slumped gold-colored solder) that was placed like a welding bead
along the edge of the silver base.

The appearance has change considerably. The “gold” border is pitted
with rusty spots. The “silver” changes aren’t typical tarnish either.
Can’t expain what happened there though it looks like deterioration
of a silver flashing over base metal.

Pam Chott

Reading the info from the gallery about Charles Duncan’s work,
sterling is heated 17 times, and magically becomes, pure silver? It
states that the silver can then be bent without breaking due to the
crystallization that occurs from the 17 heatings? It says, gold rods
are fused along the edge.

I do not know how accurate the description is, seems some liberties
were taken in the explanation.

Crystallization of silver is also called "work hardening."It makes
the material brittle and liable to snap.

What is being described in the 17 heatings sounds more like raising
a thin pure silver skin on sterling silver by repeated heatings and

This description of “17 heatings” sounds like depletion plating to
me --The part about dropping it in pickle being left out. Still,
that would notremove ALL of the copper from sterling; it would
remove only surface layers leaving a visible surface of "pure silver"
a few molecules deep.

Wouldn’t it be easier to start with fine silver?


Looks like a bimetal casting. Gold cast onto sterling.

I have fused silver and gold before. good torch control is all that
is needed. Silver fused to fold formed bronze flower tips looks

Vernon Wilson
Panama Bay Jewelers

That looks like the maker just held a gold wire in tweezers, and
used a torch to melt/fuse the wire along the edge to create a
globular wall of gold. Building up as desired. You just need to use
your torch to get the gold and silver to melt and fuse as you want
it to, boric acid to prevent oxidation is amust.


The way the good meets the ring makes me wonder if that is what’s
happening. I often fuse/weld gold (14 or 18 yellow or rose) to
sterling. The sterling wicks a lot of heat and the weld is usually
lumpy on the silver side. My readof the image doesn’t show that,
hence my thoughts on bimetal casting.

Another way to do this is to use Aura 22.

There is good info on the process here:

If your going to add it to sterling silver, the silver will need to
have the fine silver brought to the surface. If your adding it to a
PMC ring, thering is already pure silver so that step is eliminated.
We have a video on how to use it on your PMC pieces.

Best regards,

Phillip Scott
Graduate Gemologist
Technical Support Specialist
Rio Grande, A Berkshire Hathaway Company