950 Palladium Bridal Jewelry Manufacturing
Retailers have been converting bridal inventories from white gold to palladium as manufacturers expand the selection of new palladium jewelry designs. In addition to stocking palladium pieces, they have been custom making bridal jewelry with new palladium alloys. There are several factors responsible for this favorable (re)turn to palladium including.
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Retailers have been converting bridal inventories from white gold to palladium as manufacturers expand the selection of new palladium jewelry designs. In addition to stocking palladium pieces, they have been custom making bridal jewelry with new palladium alloys. There are several factors responsible for this favorable (re)turn to palladium including:
- Palladium alloys for jewelry manufacturing are pure, like platinum alloys used for the same. They are alloyed predominantly with other platinum group metals (PGM).
- The alloys consist of 95 percent palladium and are typically alloyed with ruthenium with trace amounts of other non-allergenic metals that contribute to hardness.
Availability of 950 palladium components
- Palladium finished jewelry, findings (including ring shanks), solder, wire and sheet are readily available from Hoover & Strong, Richmond, VA and a growing list of other suppliers.
- Like platinum, palladium wears better than white gold. According to Stewart Grice, director of mill products and refining for Hoover & Strong, "We have conducted wear testing of our TruPd 950 palladium alloy and it revealed that TruPd has a 15 percent greater wear resistance when compared to white gold."
- Palladium is comparable in weight to 14-karat gold, making it very comfortable to wear even larger pieces. 950 palladium has a specific gravity of 12.0. The specific gravity of most 14-karat white gold alloys is 12.7. With the specific gravities being almost the same, individual pieces of jewelry in 950 palladium and 14-karat white gold will weigh about the same.
- Palladium and other platinum group metals are hypoallergenic. Many 14-karat white gold alloys contain nickel, an element which commonly causes allergic reactions.
- Palladium is malleable making it easy to bend, form and manipulate and has little or no memory, a characteristic conducive to the setting process of gemstones.
- Palladium jewelry does not require rhodium plating to make it white. It is naturally bright white so it doesn't turn a yellowish color with wear.
These points represent helpful selling tips for use at the sales counter.
Custom Making a 950 Palladium Engagement Ring
Michael Gerwig recently designed and sold a custom made 950 palladium engagement ring. Gerwig says, "My customer wanted purity, whiteness and superior wearing characteristics and the cost for custom making a platinum engagement ring exceeded his budget so palladium was the perfect alternative."
This design was done by Michael Gerwig using Matrix 3D jewelry design software. After the design consultation and final approval of the design, Gerwig made the wax model for casting using his Revo 540 mill.
Here's an overview of the custom design and palladium jewelry making procedure:
This installment is sponsored by Stillwater Mining Company, Columbus, MT. Stillwater Mining Company is the largest palladium mine in North America . For information related to the Stillwater Mining Company contact James Binando at 406-373-8711, or John Stark at 406-373-8712
Casting for this palladium ring project was done by TechForm, Portland, OR. TechForm specializes in casting stainless steel, platinum and palladium for the jewelry industry.
The 950 palladium used in this project is TruPd™ from Hoover & Strong, Richmond, VA. TruPd is available in sheet, wire, casting grain, solder and a range of findings.
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