Can someone share a red gold alloy? I want a real red, not a pink.
I know I need to add some silver to the alloy for workability, just
don't know how much. I'm going to roll and draw into wire, so it
can't be brittle. How much copper do I need for a good red? I want
to stay above 18K. Thanks!
For the best red, use just copper and gold. The workability problems
arise when you don't properly anneal it. The red golds, especially
near to 18K, if cooled slowly, will form what's called an ordered
array structure that's as brittle as glass if enough of it forms. To
avoid that, the trick is to quench the metal after annealing or other
heating, from barely at or just below the last trace of red glow. But
to avoid shocking the metal and cracking it by quenching in water,
quench in alcohol. That's a slightly slower quench, but still able
to avoid forming that brittle structure. If you've cooled it slowly,
reanneal with the quench. If you didn't cause that brittle structure
to crack, reannealing it with the quench fixes the structure. If you
worked it at all, though, and formed cracks, then you're kinda out of
You can add silver if you wish, but any silver added will lighten
the color. It doesn't take much silver to make a distinct difference
in the color.