Any amateur goldsmiths out there?
Had to take my wedding ring into the jewellers today to get it repaired.
I hadn't worn it for about 2 years as my fingers have swollen a bit in the last 18 years and it would no longer fit over my knuckle.
I knew it would have to be adjusted (cut & enlarged) if I took it in to the jewellers, so I thought I might as well have a go at stretching it myself first, as either way I would be in for a bill of some sort.
Anyway, searched all over the net for tips on annealing gold prior to stretching the ring, and whilst I found mention of it plenty of times to undo the work hardening that apparently can occur, there were very few tips and some sparse and conflicting advice. Some said anneal at 650degC then air cool, some said red hot and quench, like copper, others said barely even red heat as otherwise the temper hardness increases, and so on.
So I heated the ring up red hot, and let it air cool back to room temperature. First thing I noticed is that the Gold scaled up very badly, and I mean scale that needs pickling rather than polishing to remove it. Oops!
Then I very gently started tapping it on the small end of an MT3 centre that I was going to use to stretch it. The ring was mis-shapen anyway after years of being bashed, and after just a few very gentle taps with a nylon hammer the ring cracked. Double Oops!
The crack was a single straight, clean break, so I decided it was time to let the expert jewellers have a look at it.
After a wry knowing smile, I was told to come back in 2 days and it will repaired, a size bigger, and gleaming like new all for £30.
So, I'm curious as to know the correct method for annealing and working Gold, if anyone has done it, and also exactly where I went wrong (apart from not going to the jewellers first )