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Repairing wear on white gold

pregcurious

Ideal_Rock
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Mar 18, 2009
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I've been reading all the debates about platinum versus white gold (and all the different alloys of each). I have gotten the impression that wear on platinum can be easily repaired because one does not lose metal due to scratches and dings; white gold, however, loses metal with the same wear. If I have wear on my white gold ring, can the metal be replaced somehow? Can metal be added back with precision using some type of welding? Sorry if this is a silly question.
 

LD

Ideal_Rock
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No question is silly!

The wear on a platinum ring and white gold ring can look very different - it's actually very personal as to what you'd like. All rings, over many years, will thin out. It depends on the amount of wear in all honesty as to how quickly or slowly this happens. To give you an idea on the main differences:-

White gold rings:

Typically w/gold is plated with rhodium. Rhodium wears off over time (and this can be months or years depending on the wearer and useage). When it wears off it can make the metal look more yellow and will need to be re-dipped. Re-dipping is relatively inexpensive. In terms of how a w/gold ring looks after general wear, it tends to show scratches here and there but will keep the polish elsewhere.

Platinum:

Generally speaking it looks slightly more grey than white gold although it too can be plated with rhodium and can be polished to a high shine. However platinum does tend to "dull" and appear with what looks like a tiny scratchy patina all over - rather than the odd scratch here and there with w/gold. A quick polish at a jewellers will get rid of the patina and bring back the shine (but, for me and I'm light with my rings, it doesn't stay that way for long)!

Dents? Well everything can dent but it's not easy to dent unless the ring is very thin in the first place. All rings can be repaired and dents pushed out, scratches polished out etc. it really depends on the damage. The "look" of platinum and w/gold is very similar for MOST people but I'm afraid us PS'ers usually have preferences and are much more critical of the finished product so our choice of metal is from a gem junkie point of view! I would suggest you buy what you like and forget about repairs! Hopefully repairs and maintenance will be few and far between.
 

aviastar

Brilliant_Rock
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Oct 5, 2010
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1,190
My understanding of this is that platinum should require less repair due to wear than gold, i.e. prong replacement. But if something major happens (like it has to be cut off for surgery or something) both would require a new metal 'patch' to fix. A lot can be done with repairing gold like replacing prongs, reinforcing a thin shank, ect but both platinum and gold will wear to the point that repair, with additional metal or not, is not advisable; platinum will simply take longer to get there. Scratches and surface damage can be polished out of both fairly easily, no additional metal required.

Hope that helps!
 

pregcurious

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Mar 18, 2009
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Thanks for your responses. Somehow I got the impression that once a white gold ring has been worn away to a point, there's not way to rebuilt it. I was hoping to maintain my rings so that doesn't happen.

I post this question because I'm branching out to an annivesary ring set with a 18K WG eternity (received this week) and a platinum 3-stone (hopefully next year), so I'm trying to figure out how to maintain the rings. Previously, I had a 14K plain YG wedding band that I have been wearing alone for the last 15 years, but I finally have a 18K YG engagement ring reset to wear with it, and I already see scratches on the ering (the 14K YG band is 3mm thick and already has a bunch of little scratches that do not bother me).
 

chrono

Super_Ideal_Rock
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Depending on where the worn out portion is, the WG gold ring can be "rebuilt". I purchased an Art Deco period style ring in WG with the bottom of the shank worn down to a rather dangerously thin level. I had the jeweller rebuild it for $100 a few years ago. I am not sure exactly what he did to it, but the shank thickness was beefed up when I got the ring back, with no solder lines or any obvious signs of work done on it.
 

chrono

Super_Ideal_Rock
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Depending on where the worn out portion is, the WG gold ring can be "rebuilt". I purchased an Art Deco period style ring in WG with the bottom of the shank worn down to a rather dangerously thin level. I had the jeweller rebuild it for $100 a few years ago. I am not sure exactly what he did to it, but the shank thickness was beefed up when I got the ring back, with no solder lines or any obvious signs of work done on it.
 

Lady_Disdain

Ideal_Rock
Trade
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Chrono|1313162036|2989323 said:
Depending on where the worn out portion is, the WG gold ring can be "rebuilt". I purchased an Art Deco period style ring in WG with the bottom of the shank worn down to a rather dangerously thin level. I had the jeweller rebuild it for $100 a few years ago. I am not sure exactly what he did to it, but the shank thickness was beefed up when I got the ring back, with no solder lines or any obvious signs of work done on it.
Chrono, the ring was probably reshanked, where the thin part of the shank is cut off and replaced. A good jeweler can get the new part of the shank to match perfectly, specially if he can cut it off near some decoration.

Pregcurious, this sort of wear takes a long, long time of continuous use (like the century old ring Chrono mentioned) if the shank is made reasonably sturdy. I would be more worried with prong safety (very thin prongs will wear out much faster) and, specially, any pave work.
 

LD

Ideal_Rock
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Lady_Disdain|1313172073|2989445 said:
Chrono|1313162036|2989323 said:
Depending on where the worn out portion is, the WG gold ring can be "rebuilt". I purchased an Art Deco period style ring in WG with the bottom of the shank worn down to a rather dangerously thin level. I had the jeweller rebuild it for $100 a few years ago. I am not sure exactly what he did to it, but the shank thickness was beefed up when I got the ring back, with no solder lines or any obvious signs of work done on it.
Chrono, the ring was probably reshanked, where the thin part of the shank is cut off and replaced. A good jeweler can get the new part of the shank to match perfectly, specially if he can cut it off near some decoration.

Pregcurious, this sort of wear takes a long, long time of continuous use (like the century old ring Chrono mentioned) if the shank is made reasonably sturdy. I would be more worried with prong safety (very thin prongs will wear out much faster) and, specially, any pave work.

Building on the two posts above, the other thing to be aware of is that if you ever re-size the ring and it's either pave/micro or channel set, there may well be issues with stability further down the line. A good jeweller will fully ensure all prongs are in the correct position if re-sizing any of these styles but unfortunately they can work loose and some jewellers will not inspect every prong afterwards.
 

pregcurious

Ideal_Rock
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