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How to remove "technibond" gold plating from diamond bracelet?
November 7, 2010
I have a "technibond" gold plated DIAMOND bracelet .. absolutely beautiful but she will not wear yellow gold? Base metal is sterling silver .925 & gold overlay is 40 mils thick according to specs. What do I use to safely remove gold plating ? diamonds are mix of quite a few 20 pt stones 20+ and some areas of pave .. all total 4 carats.
thanks for any and all advice please make suggestions specific -- I am a novice!
hobbyist - Port Saint Lucie, Florida, USA
November 8, 2010
It's not 40 mils thick (that would be 40 thousandths of an inch); it's 40 millionths of an inch thick. Unfortunately, "Technibond®" is an HSN trademark which means it has no meaning at all, just whatever they decide at the moment, and it seems that they're not quite saying :-)
According to Paul Deasy, a jewelry specialist and former employee, it was originally a coating of 18 kt gold followed by a very thin polymer coating that deterred wear and had a lifetime guarantee; later they omitted the polymer coating, which was a "disaster". Then they fixed the problem again, but in yet another iteration Technibond went from an 18 kt coating to 14 kt. He feels it's a good value but that you would get better wear from real vermeil (100 millionths of an inch). Obviously, since you don't want the gold plating, vermeil would be the wrong choice for you though.
Probably the only practical way to remove the polymer and the gold plating is by having a jeweler precision sand it; that is often practical with simple items, but may be incompatible with the diamond placements. And if you get it off, what then? Does she want silver jewelry that will quickly tarnish? I suggest that she give it to her mother or sister, or that you try to sell it one way or another.
Sorry, but there is no easy way. Good luck.
Ted Mooney, P.E. RET
Pine Beach, New Jersey
November 9, 2010
Option 1 is to sell it and buy something that she likes. You will lose money on this, but unless you do not have the wear coating (IE: the 14K gold option)it will probably be similar priced and far less hassle.
If it is the 14K option, a good shop can plate a platinum group metal over it and make it a brilliant "white".
Option 2 is to replace the "she".
- Navarre, Florida