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Working with Platinum / palladium


#1

Hi all

I am looking at getting a professional setter to set a 1 carat
diamond in a handmade platinum tiffany style ring, with 6 prongs.
The setter has not worked in platinum before, but has set similar
rings in palladium. I am wondering if it is significantly more
difficult to set with? If it is, and he and I don’t want to take the
risk, how much less secure would palladium prongs be? Is it possible
to compare the palladium prongs to the security of say 18 ct yellow
gold?

Best wishes and thanks in advance for your help,

Anna M Williams


#2

Hi Anna,

To answer your questions directly, the physical act of setting is
really no different when setting in platinum or in palladium. It is
not any more or less difficult to set a diamond in one metal as
compared to the other. As to durability (a metal’s ability to
withstand wear, sort of like tire tread life), platinum is
hands-down more durable.

‘Security’ on the other hand, has much more to do with the mechanical
engineering of the prong structure than with the metal itself.
Without getting too technical, the techniques used to create the
prongs, their unsupported length and the attachment method used are
important factors, but it’s the skill of the setter in shaping and
fitting the seat and the consequential bending required to close the
prongs that is probably the single most important factor affecting
the overall security of a diamond in a setting. Even though platinum
is almost universally accepted as the superior metal for setting
diamonds, a palladium setting with a well cut and fitted seat with
the prongs properly closed and finished will most likely be much more
secure than a platinum setting with a poorly cut and fitted seat,
regardless of how either one was constructed.

That said, I’m not trying to cast aspersions but I have to wonder
about a ‘professional setter’ that hasn’t any experience working
with platinum. Sort of goes with the turf, like a plumber that hasn’t
ever worked with copper pipe. I guess there’s a first time for
everything, but that lack of experience may actually constitute the
biggest risk factor to the well-being of your diamond - both short
term and long, regardless of the metal you eventually decide on. I’m
just sayin’…

Dave Phelps


#3

He should not have a problem with platinum. Pre polish before
setting or soldering the head it is easier…

Not much difference in cutting the seat between the two. Prongs will
stay down when you bend them. I only use platinum on white metal
settings gold orplatinum. Platinum is the best…

Vernon Wilson
Panama Bay Jewelers


#4

Anna- Palladium will wear better than 18 kt gold. Platinum will wear
better than Palladium. If your professional contract setter has never
set a stone in platinum, you should probably hire someone with more
experience.

Especially if the center stone is an expensive enough diamond that
it is getting set in a platinum mounting.

Have fun and make lots of jewelry.

Jo Haemer
timothywgreen.com


#5

Anna Williams & everyone

All the setters I know (even me) have worked on both Platinum &
Palladium extensively. If you are in doubt of his credibility, look
again! If he needs some assistance, let him write to me ‘off-line’ so
I can send him some literature. I have written many essay’s on 4 &
6-claw/prong setting.

Even on the videos program on Orchid I have numerous video’s showing
how to set these Engagement rings.

A “professional setter” must have many years of training to be
called a ‘professional’. I have been setting for only 54 years.
experience dictates just how good he is!!!

Gerry Lewy
gemsettingtutor.com