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Is rhodium plating a common practice?

daniel,now i don’t want to go off on a rant here, but: i do not like
working with rhodium plated pieces. rhodium plating is not as much
of an issue for most professional is a nuisance for
me,but i have no control over what other manufacturers do. i can have
knowledge of how to handle what might be a challenging situation.
rhodium can make things more difficult, but not does
have value for certain circumstances. i would not hesitate to rhodium
a yellow gold pair of earring studs when my customer wants them
changed to white gold. i tell them, they are fine, and they save
money. it seems to be that some people take what seems to be a moral
stand as to what should be right and wrong. what about 14kt gold
chains that are plated with 18kt, and you have to solder a break and
it ain’t the same color, and the customer asks why? what about the
lack of disclosure i encounter about the negatives about platinum, a
far more serious issue for the customer. if the item has multiple
diamonds and you need to retip, you either have to retip with white
gold, and have the same problem with white gold, stress fractures and
attacked by certain chemicals that can compromise its integrity, or
remove the diamonds, which is expensive. very few of my customers
were educated as to pros and cons of platinum, especially how soft it
is and depending on the wearer, can develope what the platinum guild
calls “patina”(gets all scratched up), and it is three times as
expensive as white gold. noble metal or noble attitude. and what
about moissonite, with a distinct yellow body color that is what we
educate customers is a negative in diamonds apparently is just peachy
when you pay hundreds of dollars per carat for something that a cz
will do even if you had to replace the cz occasionally, the price is
not justified, but thank god for the power of advertising. but that’s
just my $.02. maybe we should consider having a format on the board,
start with: VENTING: and complain about something, and then we can
bitch about something that irritates us, and get support for where we
are with no advice, judgment or criticism.

 daniel,now i don't want to go off on a rant here, but: i do not
like working with rhodium plated pieces. rhodium plating is not as
much of an issue for most professional is a nuisance
for me,but i have no control over what other manufacturers do. 

Hey… It would really help if you were a bit more discerning when
you say "Daniel " as there are quite a few of us on the list who
have that name… and I know that a few of us made statements about
the pro’s and con’s of Rhodium plating… In my Book, Any Plating
should be only done with the customers full knowledge before
hand… and if a store sells chain that is 14k, but plated to look
like 18k, then this should also be brought to the customers
attention.Just my observations on this situation. Daniel Grandi

We do casting,finishing and a whole lot more for designers, stores
and people in the trade. Contact:

to whom it may concern,and daniel grandi, i had an offline
reply from the daniel i responded to, and i responded back. he
acknowledged that we had some things in common with the delemmas we
face. those of us who are in retail have numerous situations that
require more attention than most other types of businesses face, more
disclosure, more treatments and more items that have had previous
repair that are a nightmare waiting to happen. the level of awareness
that i and my staff have to have about what we purchase and what we
have to make the customer aware of is quite a chore. manufacturers
can use products and not be aware of the retailers responsibility or
liability, and sometimes we have no recourse. they won’t stand behind
their product. its my reputation that will suffer. about the
rhodium, i have had a retail store for 15 years, my experience is
that if you do not take care of a customer for the small challenging
pain in the ass stuff, someone else will, and make the future diamond
sale. to be real about this, chain stores might have disclosure
policies, but most employees are uneducated (or don’t care),they
don’t have product knowledge and sell more in one day than i do in a
week. when i disclose, it has to be done right, or you turn the
customer off and lose the sale. some customers don’t listen and come
back and blame me. honesty and integrity are tested on a daily basis
because of the amount of attention that i have to pay attention to
what it is, how it was treated, how it was made, the care the
customer has to take. when customers bring in pieces to be cleaned,
sized ect, i ask what they were told, most were not told anything.
disclosure is a great concept, and realistically, i pay a price for
disclosing that another retailer won’t. i bear that burden, i am a
goldsmith and a graduate gemologist in residence. some of the
responses about rhodium apparently were from people who might not be
skilled or knowledgeable about how to deal with it, and not clever
enough to send it to a trade shop who will do it. and if you have not
been in retail, you have not walked in my shoes, so theoreticals are
romantic, the world would be a better place if…! how many of you
out there that retail disclose 14kt chain plated with 18kt? i would
be interested in hearing from you.richard hart in denver

Rhodium is harder (ie more durable) and more expensive - $1800 / tr
oz than gold - the plating is thin and nearly nonexistant in weight
to the gold content of the piece. that and the fact that must people
want WHITE gold not GRAY gold, the business does not feel the need
to make this practice a “required disclosable fact”.

Do we next need to disclose for all the vegan jewelry customers out
there that a (heaven forbid) rawhide mallet might have actually
touched their precious ring, or that the solder holding the head to
their ring is not true plumb 14kt but mor along the lines of

let not forget my favorite - conflict diamonds. where’s the outcry
over conflict gold, conflict platinum, conflict oil, coal, water.

Andrew Goodell