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Soldering Silver and White Gold


#1

ho out there,

just a wee question. i made some rings for a friends’ wedding. they
are cast white gold and somehow in between sizing one and casting it
for the groom it got a teeny bit too big. no idea how. However, i
was thinking that as they have a continuous pattern ont hem that i
can’t cut and resize and probably couldn’t as they are cast anyway.
I seem to have a vague meory about cast items being less able to
move an bend due to their structure.

Anyway, i thought i could simply solder a thin strip of silver on
the inside to make the fit, which my friend is agreeable to. I am
just wondering before i iff and do this, whether there is any reason
why i shouldn’t or couldn’t. Would i just use silver solder or do i
need to get white gold solder or do i need to not use silver at all
and get a piece of white gold to dothe job instead?

any sugestions would be much appreciated.

cheers
skadi


#2

Hello Skadi,

Your question, “Anyway, i thought i could simply solder a thin strip
of silver on the inside to make the fit, which my friend is agreeable
to. I am just wondering before i iff and do this, whether there is
any reason why i shouldn’t or couldn’t.”

Use the same karet white gold for your strip (or you might use
sizing balls). You won’t have to concern yourself with different
melting temperatures of the metals and you’ll honor the hallmark of
the band.

Just my humble opinion,
Judy in Kansas


#3

Hi Skadi,

Would i just use silver solder or do i need to get white gold
solder or do i need to not use silver at all and get a piece of
white gold to dothe job instead?

Apart from the color matching and legal reason to maintain the
purity of the completed piece, I guess there is also a question of
the quality of solded joint, in choosing a combination of solder and
the parent metal. I understand that it is a matter of balancing the
temperatures, one that allows the parent metal’s surface grain
structure grow microscopic openings, and the other that the solder
itself melt and flow into these openings. If the silver solder of
choice has a much lower melting point, it will flow away and starts
to be oxidized by the excess heat, well before the surface structure
of white gold become ready to recieve solders. If you manipulate
heating process, solder may apparently melt at the joint, but still
it seems possible that microscopic structure of the joint does not
contain sufficiently thick diffusion zone (a layer of new alloy
created by solder and parent metal), thus may not be very reliable.
This is a theoretical speculation I would make. Perhaps in practice
the joint strength may be still tolereable for daily use…that I
don’t really know.

Akiko


#4

Before you solder a strip inside the band-- are you aware that there
is a tool to shrink bands? It presses the ring into a sort of
funnel-shaped hole to compress it. You could probably get a friendly
jewelry store to let you use one (or do it for you) cheap or even
free.

–Noel