My goal is to plate sterling silver rings with Rio Grande’s ‘24ky
heavy deposition bright acid gold’ solution. With 5 failed attempts,
I am still trying to trouble shoot.
The process I used as per each bottle’s instructions:
Clean the piece in the electro cleaner (180 degrees) at 10 volts
for 60 seconds. The anode was stainless steel and the ‘wire’ holding
the silver ring was copper.
Rinse with water.
Nickel plate with Rio’s 'bright nickel plating solution (140
degrees) at 3 volts for 3 mins. Nickel anode.
Rinse with water.
To this point, everything worked well in all 5 tests.
- Rio’s 24ky heavy deposition gold plating solution. Instructions
on the bottle say, stainless steel anode, heat to 100 degrees,
voltage 1/2 - 3. Time ‘until desired thickness is achieved’ about 100
microinches are deposited in about 35mins at 3 volts.
I used a stainless steel anode, heated the solution, used a gold
wire to hold the nickel plated sterling ring. I started with 3 volts
and set a timer for 35 mins. Everything looked good for several
mins, a smooth shiny gold plating had consistently covered the
piece. After 15mins, I checked again. It had developed a frosty
thick texture on the ring as well as the gold wire holding it. The
connection between the gold wire and the negative clip had turned
slightly dark. I pulled it out and polished the ring. The plating
seemed to hold up through a light sanding (to level the surface) and
a buffing with tripoli.
Next attempts were with a lower voltage, though it seems they all
get ‘chunky/frosty’ within 15mins.
Is this frosty coating normal?
Could this be a result of the bath cooling down in 15mins?
Should I have electro-cleaned again after nickel plating instead of
just rinsing with water?
What ‘wire’ material should I use to hold the piece (negative) for
24ky gold plating?
Any advise would be much appreciated, I have not done much plating
It seems like a tricky art