Back to Ganoksin | FAQ | Contact

Mixing 14KY gold and 14/20 gold fill


#1

I’ve worked in silver for several years, and am starting to make
simple, small bezel-set pieces (women’s rings and pendants) using
14/20 gold-fill.

It’s going well except that the 14KY gold solder I purchased doesn’t
match the 14/20 gf sheet I purchased. If someone has a comment on
this, I would appreciate input.

I want to start making the bezels in 14KY gold, and then, to keep
the price down expecially while I am experimenting, using gold-fill
sheet for backing and gold-fill half-round heavy gauge wire for ring
shanke and for bails…

Assuming this is workable, I would like to know what solder to use
to solder the bezel for a good color match…I doubt I would use 14K
solder, but not sure what K would give the right melting point. Also
what solder should I use to then solder the bezel onto the backing
for the piece?

Thanks in advance for any advice i receive.
Catherine Schratt, Cate Jewelry


#2
I want to start making the bezels in 14KY gold, and then, to keep
the price down expecially while I am experimenting, using
gold-fill sheet for backing and gold-fill half-round heavy gauge
wire for ring shanke and for bails...... 

The one glitch I forsee there may be in how you build your bezels.
If you’re used to soldering a bezel down onto sheet metal, and then
sawing it out around the bezel, using gold fill for that backing
would mean the upper surface under the stone, and the lower surface
by the finger, would be the gold layers. But the sawn edge at the
bottom of the bezel, would be exposed base metal. To get around that,
you’d have to either gold electroplate it, which tends not to be as
thick a layer as the gold fill itself, or you could cover the
exposed edge with a wire ornament.

But here’s another suggestion. Gold filled metal tends to have
somewhat of a “cheap” reputation. Rather than using the gold fill for
the backing, why not mix metals, and use silver for the backing, and
perhaps even the shank too. That gives you a karat gold bezel with a
sterling shank, all solid precious metal. Do it with 18K gold for the
bezel and it can look actually rather luxurious too, while still
letting you keep the price down.

Peter Rowe


#3

i’m a little bit of a purist, and wouldn’t consider mixing [by
soldering] gold filled with a karat content finding…quality
stamping will be a bear.

a gold bezel on a sterling ring is a different beastie…; ) with
that having been said, did you inquire with the company you buy your
metals from, if they make a solder for the product/s they sell?
that’s where i’d start.


#4

14/20 Gold fill is brass (gilding metal) with a good layer of 14K on
the outside. The product cannot be stamped with a carat stamp. I
would find the correct colour solder even if it’s 9ct hard or 18ct
easy solder. The main thing is to cover all the exposed inner brass
with gold solder. 14K Solder may appear to be the best but a good
colour match is more in keeping with the final outcome.

Regards, Alastair


#5

GF tends to get rather ugly if you overheat it when soldering. Since
gold requires a bit of heat you might find gold on GF a bit ticklish
to assemble. Another approach might be to use a gold bezel on
sterling, and then gold plate the base. Vermeil is a nice way to
have gold without the expense. I would expect the working properties
would be more reliable than gold fill too.