Friday, October 23, 2009
Setting the 3 stone ring and plating
Today we learned about plating. Not to sound like a dork, but I think it's really cool to be able to take a base metal such as brass and make it pretty and bright right with rhodium plating. I plated the three stone ring and also the ring from the bead and bright setting. Rhodium is harder to plate than gold. Therefore, we plated everything in gold first and then rhodium, to get a more even coating of rhodium. You can also mask areas with melted beeswax or nail polish and make them two toned. Some people did this with their pave ring and it looked awesome. They made the sunken base that the stones were set in rhodium and the band gold, it really makes the stones sparkle.
The important things to remember before plating are to ultra sonic the piece and rinse off in tap water but do NOT touch with your fingers. Then you use a platinum wire attached to the plating machine and do two distilled water baths and an electrode bath and then more distilled water and then plate and dip in distilled water and plate again if you want to do the rhodium.