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Best White Gold Alloys

diamondseeker2006

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There has been a lot of discussion about the problems with some white gold turning yellow and the pain in having to plate it frequently with rhodium. There has also been mention here of newer white golds that do not have to be plated to be relatively white. Some apparently are harder than others. I hope David Keeling and other jewelers will discuss the best white gold products so that we can give better advice about white gold jewelry. I certainly learned which platinum alloys are best here, and it would be great to learn if there are any white gold alloys that are superior in color and hardness and without too much nickel content.

The focus on this thread will be white gold that does NOT need rhodium plating!
 

kenny

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[URL='https://www.pricescope.com/community/threads/james-allen-ring-needs-recoating-after-8-months.141859/page-7#post-2975747#p2975747']https://www.pricescope.com/community/threads/james-allen-ring-needs-recoating-after-8-months.141859/page-7#post-2975747#p2975747[/URL]

On page 7 of this long thread TheDoctor (from DavidKeelyJewellry) says there is a white gold, WG, alloy that is so white it does not need rhodium plating, Ever!!!
This is blockbuster HUGE news!!!
.

Customers don't like having to get their rings replated.
Google shows many instances of customers upset and surprised when their white rings turn yellowish.
Often the jeweler does not educated the about the future need for replating.
Ignorance is rampant.

PS is powerful.
It can reach a zillion customers.
Educated buyers can boycott rhodium plating and demand this whiter WG alloy, if it is a simple as TheDoctor claims.
I'm skeptical and want to hear from GOG, JA, WF and others on why they still use a WG alloy that needs replating.

I have questions for TheDoctor:
Since this is a new thread, kindly repost the same info about that WG alloy you posted in the long thread above.
I think you said it was called Vanilla1 and is from San Diego.

How much more expensive is this WG alloy that doesn't need rhodium plating?
Let's calculate the cost for a lifetime of rhodium replating.
If it's $40 every 3 years . . . over 60 years? ($40 x 20 = $800)

I must assume this more-expensive WG alloy would not be $800 more. (much more for unlucky people who need it more often)
Would it cost, say, $100 more? $200?

I invite JA, WF GOG and other to post here to comment if they would like to cease using WG that needs plating.
There appears to be no downside, only upsides.
IF not, perhaps you know more than has been posted so far.

Doctor, you have raised very very important points.
I believe admin allows vendor posting of pics that are for legitimate educational purposes.
Please post side by side pics of a rhodium-plated ring next to one of this alloy.

Please correct me if I'm wrong but I suspect most WG rings sold today, even by our PS vendors, are manufactured in large quantities in China.
Getting China to change may be like an ant trying to push a tank.
 

diamondseeker2006

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On page 3 of this document, there is a nice table showing the whiteness of Stuller metals:

http://www.stuller.com/apps/images/kbpdfs/x1.pdf

I am curious if any of our jewelers are using Stuller X1? I had some diamonds set in X1 settings but then returned the diamonds so I did not get to really test the metal, although earring settings generally never need replating anyway.
 

kenny

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DS2006, I think the main point is the possible end of rhodium plating.

If you want to edit your title, this will draw more attention.
Alloys is an old tired topic having been discussed many times here but the possible elimination of rhodium plating is HUGE if TheDoctor is right and this pans out.
 

jaebond

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diamondseeker, as a quick question, which are these best platinum alloys? or can you link me somewhere about them?
 

thelostcity

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kenny|1311527172|2975777 said:
https://www.pricescope.com/community/threads/james-allen-ring-needs-recoating-after-8-months.141859/page-7#post-2975747#p2975747

On page 7 of this long thread TheDoctor (from DavidKeelyJewellry) says there is a white gold, WG, alloy that is so white it does not need rhodium plating, Ever!!!
This is blockbuster HUGE news!!!
Wait, so do you mean that this alloy so white that it can match the look of rhodium plating? Because I've heard of alloys that are white enough that one does not "need" to rhodium plate it if the upkeep will be too much of a hassle, but never of something that can match the rhodium look.
 

diamondseeker2006

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Kenny, there are white golds that do not have to be plated. When I ordered white gold earring settings, the cost was maybe 10-20% higher for the Stuller X1. I don't know how to edit the title!!!
 

kenny

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thelostcity|1311528480|2975793 said:
kenny|1311527172|2975777 said:
https://www.pricescope.com/community/threads/james-allen-ring-needs-recoating-after-8-months.141859/page-7#post-2975747#p2975747

On page 7 of this long thread TheDoctor (from DavidKeelyJewellry) says there is a white gold, WG, alloy that is so white it does not need rhodium plating, Ever!!!
This is blockbuster HUGE news!!!
Wait, so do you mean that this alloy so white that it can match the look of rhodium plating? Because I've heard of alloys that are white enough that one does not "need" to rhodium plate it if the upkeep will be too much of a hassle, but never of something that can match the rhodium look.
I don't know.
YOOHOO . . . TheDoctor . . . please answer.

DS2006, I think you can just click the edit button as if you are editing your post.
Then again editing the subject line may only be possible if nobody has responded yet.
I'm not sure.
 

diamondseeker2006

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jaebond|1311528350|2975790 said:
diamondseeker, as a quick question, which are these best platinum alloys? or can you link me somewhere about them?
Leon Mege and Tiffany use 95% platinum and 5% ruthenium. This is the hardest and most scratch-resistant.

Mark Morrell and Maytal Hannah use 90% platinum and 10% iridium. This is a workable metal and is very white. It is a little softer than the one above but preferred by some jewelers because it is easier to work with. This is the other good choice (IMO).

The one that is very common and softer which results in the gray patina very easily is 95 plat and 5 iridium. That is the one I avoid.
 

TheDoctor

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Kenny, thanx for the invitation to add more info. I am really quite hesitant to do so as per warnings from admin about self-promotion.
Nothing to do with my company, again, ad nauseum...we don't post here in order to solicit business. I have said this before and will do so again, to be sure. My sole purpose in posting on PS is to provide insight from a trade perspective, minus the pitch. We are not allowed to self-promote, and I respect that rule.

O.K., two photos of platinum rings nearly destroyed from daily wear in the span of one year, and one of the remake in 19 karat white gold.
Oops, tried but can't seem to successfully upload, my upload seems to have been made unavailable or there may be a technical issue.
 

LGK

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thelostcity|1311528480|2975793 said:
kenny|1311527172|2975777 said:
https://www.pricescope.com/community/threads/james-allen-ring-needs-recoating-after-8-months.141859/page-7#post-2975747#p2975747

On page 7 of this long thread TheDoctor (from DavidKeelyJewellry) says there is a white gold, WG, alloy that is so white it does not need rhodium plating, Ever!!!
This is blockbuster HUGE news!!!
Wait, so do you mean that this alloy so white that it can match the look of rhodium plating? Because I've heard of alloys that are white enough that one does not "need" to rhodium plate it if the upkeep will be too much of a hassle, but never of something that can match the rhodium look.
I have a couple of rings that are made of a 14K alloy that doesn't need rhodium plating *and* is indeed bright bright white. I wore one for about three years straight, and it remained totally white. It's brighter to my eye than the antique 14K high-nickel alloys (that typically aren't plated, and are much whiter than modern unplated white gold). It's a hair less chrome-looking than rhodium but whiter than platinum.

It's a gold-palladium alloy. The rings were handforged by someone who, I believe, is unfortunately not in business anymore. But, if he did it, it seems do-able, right? It'd be nice, that's for sure!
 

TheDoctor

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LynoraS.jpg

Non-photoshopped image of a finished 19 karat white gold UNPLATED ring.
Sorry, can't seem to upload side-by-side comparisons, but you should be able to get the drift. The colours are very similar, but the 19 karat is TWICE as hard as the platinum alloy and probably 2/3 harder than conventional 18 karat white gold alloys.
 

diamondseeker2006

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David, that photo looks great! But can you give us more info about the metal itself other than 19K? How could I tell my local jeweler or any jeweler that I want something made with this specific metal?
 

kenny

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TheDoctor|1311529608|2975805 said:
Kenny, thanx for the invitation to add more info. I am really quite hesitant to do so as per warnings from admin about self-promotion.
Nothing to do with my company, again, ad nauseum...we don't post here in order to solicit business. I have said this before and will do so again, to be sure. My sole purpose in posting on PS is to provide insight from a trade perspective, minus the pitch. We are not allowed to self-promote, and I respect that rule.

O.K., two photos of platinum rings nearly destroyed from daily wear in the span of one year, and one of the remake in 19 karat white gold.
Oops, tried but can't seem to successfully upload, my upload seems to have been made unavailable or there may be a technical issue.
I certainly understand your concern about not breaking PS rules, but the end of the rhodium nightmare is a HUGE deal.
It's like cold fusion to the jewelry industry.

If I were you and I wanted to help the public and the industry eliminate the rhodium problem I'd compose my post and send it to admin for approval.

Andrey, who runs PS, is a nice guy.
I've met him.
I believe when there is a legit topic he will WANT to offer PS to facilitate progress.

I'd love to see one pic with this examples of this white alloy next to rhodium-plated pieces.
If both are not in the same pic it is worthless AFAIC.
We've learned we cannot compare two pics.
 

kenny

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TheDoctor|1311529770|2975807 said:
I the meantime, here is a photo of a cute dog. Mojo03a.jpg
Cute doggie.
Is he/she wearing a WG collar? :lol:
 

kenny

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FWIW, I just sent the following message to admin . . .


IMHO, if the OP agrees, this topic needs to be named something like "Can we eliminate Rhodium plating?" or something like that.

IMHO this is a REALLY important topic.
Can this please be pinned?
That recent ugly 7-pg James Allen WG Plating thread does not need to happen ever again.
PS can show the way for the elimination of rhodium plating by allowing the pros to flesh this out - or at least get the pros to publish why rhodium plating is the best solution.

One vendor, "TheDoctor" wants to post pics of WG pieces he made that demonstrate they do not need rhodium plating.
He is worried about being moderated for self promotion.
Can you please post guidelines/permission specific to this discussion in this thread?
How else can we have what I feel is an important discussion if the experts are silenced?

Thanks,
Kenny
 

diamondseeker2006

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Yes, they can just add "without rhodium plating" to the title.

Kenny, read through that link about Stuller X1 that I posted. You can see the incredible hardness of the 19k X-1.

What I am wondering is whether you can get a jeweler to actually make something with it! I remember the battle in getting some vendors to use a particular platinum alloy, and now BG routinely uses plat/ruth. So it would be really good if we could get vendors to offer the option of X1 or a similar alloy.
 

kelpie

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My local jeweler refines their white gold alloy in-house. The don't plate it, it holds its shine and it's not "whello" it's just silvery. I don't know what's in it. There are great alloys out there but they need to be identified, promoted, and hopefully not proprietary. I also have an 80 year old 18k orange blossom ring and it looks white and brand new! I want to know what they were using. Granted it could be old stock but i wear it a lot.
 

kenny

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diamondseeker2006|1311533130|2975840 said:
Kelpie, my understanding is that nickel was heavily used back then.
I've heard that too . . . also that lots of people have skin reactions to nickel.
 

TheDoctor

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diamondseeker2006|1311530842|2975816 said:
David, that photo looks great! But can you give us more info about the metal itself other than 19K? How could I tell my local jeweler or any jeweler that I want something made with this specific metal?
"Never heard of it"
That will be the response from your jeweller.
'if i haven't heard of it, it can't possibly be credible' is what is going through their mind.

We have field-tested this alloy for more than 18 years and it out-performs ANY jewellery alloy, perhaps with the exception of specific platinum alloys devised by the late Steven Kretchmer that are precipitation or work-hardened.
The default platinum settings produced by 95% of the industry are prone to some form of consumer dissatisfaction. The standard alloys are still too soft to mitigate obvious evidence of wear, at an average of 140 Vickers when cast. Fabricated mountings are harder, but not significantly so.
 

diamondseeker2006

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David, it may be that you are keeping your products a proprietary secret and I guess I can't blame you, other than you said you wanted to contribute to consumer advocacy. I fully agree that I'd probably get nowhere with asking a local jeweler, but we have made our wishes known to PS vendors in the past about platinum alloys and some have listened. Since you are in Canada, it would be nice to know if this white gold is accessible somewhere in the US. That really is all I am aiming for.
 

TheDoctor

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Widely available through Argen Corp in San Diego.
Again, I am not affiliated.
And, it's not proprietary in the least.
Just not a default choice for most manufacturers. You accept rhodium, they deliver that.
 

kenny

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TheDoctor|1311534412|2975851 said:
Widely available through Argen Corp in San Diego.
Again, I am not affiliated.
And, it's not proprietary in the least.
Just not a default choice for most manufacturers. You accept rhodium, they deliver that.
I'll bet 99.99% of the time customers "accept" it only because they do not realize WG alloys are available that do not need plating to look white.
If offered a choice of a $500 setting that will need $800 in future plating and a $600 (?) that looks the same (?) but never needs plating, rhodium would vanish from rings.

BTW, someone has asked if this alloy you speak of is as white as rhodium.
Again, how much more does it cost?
 

diamondseeker2006

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Both the Argen site link and the one I provided from Stuller provide a whiteness graph showing the new alloys just below rhodium in whiteness.
 

Ella

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To clarify, if a vendor wishes to post photos of their merchandise for strictly educational purposes such as in this thread, they need to simply email us and communicate with us.

Posts should not be worded in a promotional manner but as always we welcome and encourage discussion and education including posting photos for purely educational purposes.
 
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