Practical Course Practical Goldsmith

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This article was originally posted on Userblogs on 7/20/2017.
By Wilfried SchaferMore from this author

The twelve-volume "Practical Goldsmith" series offers an entirely new means of imparting knowledge and skills in a goldsmith's various work areas. Individual work processes are shown step by step with brief (English/German) explanations and in masterfully photographed, expressive illustrations created exclusively for the series. The author's description of many tricks and techniques, and his use of the most current methods, bear witness to his long experiences.

Practical Goldsmith
1_Making a matching cufflink

Modeling after a Photo

It is always a blow when one loses an item of jewelry, and especially painful when the piece was a personal gift or a family heirloom.

2_It is always a blow when one loses an item of jewelry, and especially painful when the piece was a personal gift or a family heirloom

Take the loss of a cufflink, for example, the missing piece cannot easily be reproduced according to the remaining one, because the design must be reversed. (Figures 1 and 2). ln this case, you draw the remaining item exactly reversed, or photograph it at a scale of 1:1. You then lay a piece of transparent paper over this photograph and trace the piece. A simple flip of the drawing gives the modeler a reverse image of the original as a basis for creation of the lost cufflink. Book 2 of the Practical Series explains exact modeling and portrayal in easily understandable individual steps.

3_We slide the cottong attachment coated with gold gel over the surfaces while constantly turning the goblet. The important factor is to ensure uniform contacting throughout

The Pulse Plating Process

Many techniques, tips, and information about helpful new methods are explained in Book No. 9. Among them is the pulse plating process, a time-saving plating technique impressive for the resulting high levels of hardness and unusual comfort. This process can be applied to gold, silver, palladium, rhodium, and platinum, and allows for a markedly thicker plate than the original galvanization process. Due to the any positive aspects of the process, you could even say it turns the galvanization technique upside down. And since environmental protection is taking on an ever higher priority in todays society, it is a great  dvantage that only acid baths are required.

4_This goblet has been perfectly gold plated on the inside

This volume deals mainly with gel separation in the noble metals. Goldsmiths or galvanizers can even aim for exact results. Whether jewelry, instrument. Or sanitary facility, this process can be applied to anything. If metallic conductivity has been assured, even wood, shells, ceramic and porcelain can be galvanized. (Figures 3 and 4)

5_Even sections situated at a lower level are exceptionally well gold-plated. This is achieved by applying fibre or cotton wool tip for a longer period; the gold can be directed to the desired locations

The advantages of this method of electroplating are less time spent, increased hardness of the final product, color consistency, and greater strength of the galvanic plate layer. (Figure 5)

6_We apply retention beads to the upward-facing adhesive side of the circular waxed section (these beads are obtainable from the dental supplies trade)

As a new design possibility, items such as dental retention beads are optimal for this use. (Figure 6)

7_The optimum adhesive strenth of the retention beads on the adhesive surface enables a conductive silver lacquer to be applied immediately. This application should be effected very carefully

A single metallic unit (Figure 7) is created by a copper wire looped around the object, combined with the conductivity of the silver.

8_Subsequent scraping with a scraper motor or a brass brush by hand gives optimum results

After the dry phase, the piece is placed in a fluid electrolyte. Whether copper, gold, or silver, the object has now been plated. lt is important to follow the directions for use provided by the bath's manufacturer (Figure 8)

Laser Technique / Pulse Plating

Book 10 of the Practical Course Series has to do with new techniques. The use of the plating process for galvanic models in the jewelry industry is explained. The pulse plating process is proven for objects that cannot be produced using casting techniques. (Figures 9 and 10). The most unusual client requests, up to and including reproduction of antique items (Figure 11), can thus be fulfilled, with the results identical to the original pattern. (Figure 12)

10_The last cohesive metla is sawn through. The result of this technical operation is that an exceptional natural product can be reproduced quickly - with great hardness and extremely thick deposition

Practical-Series Goldsmith 1-10

The latest techniques presented in a series of clear illustrations and informative texts. Available at the RuehleDiebener-Publishing.

11_This is a plaster cast of an old Roman piece (approx. 40 b.c., part of a roman tumb stone cover). A moulding is to be made by galvanoforming
12_Absolutely identical to the negative mould - the piece produced by galvano-plasty using the pulse plating technique

by Wilfried Schafer

You assume all responsibility and risk for the use of the safety resources available on or through this web page. The International Gem Society LLC does not assume any liability for the materials, information and opinions provided on, or available through, this web page. No advice or information provided by this website shall create any warranty. Reliance on such advice, information or the content of this web page is solely at your own risk, including without limitation any safety guidelines, resources or precautions, or any other information related to safety that may be available on or through this web page. The International Gem Society LLC disclaims any liability for injury, death or damages resulting from the use thereof.

Wilfried Schafer

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