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Heating a 14K gold cast ring

First off I have to say I love the Orchid discussions. I have learned
about and considered many opinions and methods as a result of
everyone’s repsonses to questions.

There is probably a simple solution to my gold problem (isn’t there
always) but I am very new to working in gold. Didn’t see a discussion
of this particular problem in Orchid’s archives so I’m posting it:

I had a ring shank cast in 14K. When I soldered a 14K bezel to it,
the shank’s surface went copper-y red that took a lot of sanding to
get off to get back to the yellow gold, and to my eye it still isn’t
as yellow as it was and should be. I used white paste flux that I
usually use on silver, and a Sparex (hotpot) pickle. I don’t want all
my gold castings looking like copper after I solder something to them.
What should I have done?


You’ll find that a nitric acid pickle with work much better with gold
alloys. 19 parts water to 1 part nitric. Don’t forget to always
poor the acid into the water to avoid splattering the acid and wearing
nitrile or neolatex gloves is never a bad idea.

Ed Colbeth

Metalsmith, Computer Geek
Quincy, MA

hi Amy 14k gold is like that when it has more coper and less silver in
aloy what is a saving for a maker ,

when they cast it is polished and edgolded (goldplated) and loks wery
nice ,

when you heat it and solder something on it the layer goes off and
than you see what is made off

you cant do nothing but to do a good polish and to clean it (best
ultrasonic ) or to buy a gold plater.


Hi Amy,

I would suggest you use Boric Acid Powder to coat the ring before
heating. It helps prevent the oxygen on the air oxidising the copper
in the alloy. I apply the flux to the joint before applying the boric
acid. Mix Methylated Spirits ( Alcohol ) & Boric Acid in a jar, shake
the jar, ten dip the ring in & light the ring to burn the alcohol away
leaving the coating of Boric acid. I use Sulphuric acid a pickle. I
haven’t had any trouble with 14 ct turning red.

Be interested in hearing what other people think.

Good Luck

Dean Watson


I’ve had the same problem with 14k looking too pink after soldering.
I may be overly sensitive to color changes but I found it to be a
great aggravation. I like the real yellow color, not reddish!!! I will
look into the other pickle types. Will these substances require
hazardas shipping costs? I cast in 14k and don’t have this problem
with my castings since I’ve used Magic Cast in the melt. The product
calls for 5% Magic Cast to old scrap. I even use it when mixing half
new with half old. When keeping the karat is a concern I add some 24k
to offset the lowering the Magic Cast causes. Does anyone know why this
stuff solves the pink 14k problem? Amy asked the original question and
if she has any more thoughts for me would she contact me off line?