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What is jewellery bombing


Hi Nanz,

Technology has come so far to make our craft so much safer than it
once was, yet some miss guided souls will still want to do mercury

I am one of those souls but only out of necessity. The antique
watches I work on are all mercury gilded and, if I have to make a
new part which will be readily seen, it HAS to be mercury gilded or
it stands out like a sore thumb. No modern process gives the soft
rich dappled sheen and slight unevenness of surface that is
characteristic of mercury gilding and to try to stop off the
underside parts so that it looks like a mercury gilt piece where
there is a slight ‘overspray’ (can’t think of a better word) from the
gilded part of the surface onto the ungilded part would be almost
impossible to achieve realistically. Admittedly the work I do on
museum type pieces is a little unusual but, in any good restoration
work, there is always a need to use old techniques to blend the new
work in with the old. At least now we know the dangers of these
processes we can approach them in a sensible and safe way and, at
least, we are unlikely to be exposing ourselves to them every working
day as was the norm in the past.

Best Wishes

Ian W. Wright
Sheffield UK