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Granulation on tubing

Hi! I am new to Ganoksin, but I’m hoping to share ideas and continue my self-learning here.

I am interested in where to get specific information on processes and procedures used to granulate on small 22k gold tubes. I e made a chain and want the end caps to be decorated with granulation.

I think that once I’ve formed the tubes and balls, I need to copper plate them both- but even that I am not sure about. Maybe I just need to copper plate the balls and enrich the tubing??? That sounds more correct
This I need to better understand the process. Specifically though tips on how to do it on tubes-please!

You don’t copper plate anything. The granules are adhered to the surface with an adhesive solution of an organic gum mixed with a copper salt. As the piece is heated the gum oxidizes creating a reducing environment which frees the copper from the salt so it can bond to the gold.
There are lots of good books which explain the process. Reading any one of them is preferable to trying to learn it from online tips and tricks.
Also, you should start by learning on flat pieces. Once you have developed your technique so you have reliable success, then move to objects in the round.

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Jeanette Caines at Jewelry Arts has a rich trove of how-to’s on youtube: You should definitely try on a flat surface first. You don’t need to copper plate or enrich the surface. You can copper plating the balls by stirring them with a piece of iron in a small copper dish filled with pickle. You know they’re “done” because they start to look like copper. Then use hide glue in a solution with 12 drops of water with one or two drops of flux to affix them to the surface. Jeanette also created a product called G glue which I found is easy to use and simplifies the glue step considerably. It comes in a little squeeze bottle that you can get from her web site and I think it’s also available from Rio Grande. The tricky part of granulation is temperature control: getting the heat right between the torch and the ultralite kiln while using a brushy flame. Not hot enough, and the granules pop off. Too much and the whole thing melts.

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Kent Raible has an excellent online class in exactly this technique. He is a master at granulation.
judy hoch


I have read and watched someone take some old pickle and put the granules in the pickle and then touch them with a steel tweezer - the big no no usually, but this was done with the specific intent of very lightly coating the 22K gold granules with copper. She did use an organic glue, maybe gum tragacanth, I can’t remember. Im sure that there are many ways to do it and what your suggesting sounds like what I have also read, where goldsmiths grate malachite, I believe, for its copper content and use that - but I believe it gives a less clean result.

Thank you so much!

Thank you so much, Makena! I have tried granulation on flat surfaces successfully, albeit, only a few times and not very complicated patterns. I know about that GGlue too. Really, was looking for info on granulating on times- I’m probably moving to quickly though and should experiment and really get a stronger grip on granulating flat and doomed first! Thank you also for clarifying that I don’t need to copper plate north the granules and the flat !


I know! I thought about taking his class just now, but I’m having surgery soon and worried about being able to do the work in the time allotted. I’ll do it next time he offers it. Also will give me time to save up for all the supplies he requires that I don’t have access to yet :crossed_fingers: