November 2, 2009

At the Repair Bench FAQ:

Posted in gold, jeweler, jewelry, jewelry design, jewelry repair, rings, rose diamonds, silver, Uncategorized tagged , , , , , , , at 7:33 pm by rosediamonds


Today, I thought I’d answer some more commonly asked questions I get at the repair bench.  Let me know if you have any more questions…we’re always glad to help:)
Q. How do I disentangle my little chains?
A. Prevention is key here.
We notch a business card and wrap tiny chains around it to hold them in place.
Another tip is to store them clasped.
Some jewelers place tiny chains in ziplock bags and leave a little bit of the chain sticking out of one corner.
Chain already tangled?  Patience and 2 safety pins.  If you live close, bring them in and I’ll do it (free).
Q. Why does my silver turn black?silver-tarnish
Several possibilities…
A. First of all, Chemical reaction to your skin’s pH.  Everyone has a unique pH in their perspiration.  Eating a lot of vegetables makes your skin more acidic.  Exposure to hair chemicals, cleaning agents, and bleach can also discolor silver.  If your silver is causing your skin to itch, you may have a “nickel allergy.”  A lot of silver in the marketplace today is coated in either a nickel based substance or rhodium (a member of the platinum family).
Q. What’s the Easiest Way to Clean Silver?
A. Although we carry silver “dip” cleaner in the shop, We recommend using the silver polishing cloths.
Silver “dip” cleaner has a sulfur base, so it is quite stinky and can irritate hands, eyes, and skin.
Toothpaste is not as effective as people claim, and gets caught in crevices and under stones.
Silver polish is a good/messy option.
Silver tarnish is accelerated by moisture, so store clean, dry silver pieces in ziplock bags away from heat and moisture (not in the bathroom or kitchen)
Q. What’s the difference between 10K, 14K, and 18K?
A. The amount of pure (24K) gold in the alloy.  Gold used in jewelry (in the US) is mixed with other metals to make it less expensive and more durable.  10K gold is about 41% pure gold, 14K is about 58% gold, and 18K is about 75% pure gold.  The other metals mixed in are different for each gold manufacturer.  For example 14K gold from the US is usually a buttery light yellow while 14K gold from the UK is more pinkish, and from the middle east is darker yellow.  Because they have the same pure gold content, they are all 14K, while they may look rather different.



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