Repairing Platinum Jewelry: Tips For Getting Started


Platinum is durable, resistant to corrosion, rare, and expensive. There is a high demand for platinum jewelry, especially rings, to mark significant events such as weddings and engagements. Platinum's qualities also make it an easier metal to work and repair than gold. This beautiful platinum ring showcases an ideal cut 1.05-ct. diamond on split prongs and 7 1-pt diamonds on each side. “Well It's About Damn Time” by ilovebutter is licensed under CC By 2.0
Platinum is durable, resistant to corrosion, rare, and expensive. Platinum jewelry is in high demand for marking significant life events. Platinum’s qualities also make it an easier metal to work and repair than gold. This beautiful platinum ring showcases an ideal cut 1.05-ct. diamond on split prongs and 7 1-pt diamonds on each side. “Well It’s About Damn Time” by ilovebutter is licensed under CC By 2.0

Question

Any words of wisdom on repairing platinum jewelry? I’m retired and do some metalwork for the local jewelers. Mostly, I do small gold jobs for them when they are too busy to keep up. (I enjoy it, and it keeps my mind and hands occupied). A few times, I’ve been asked to repair platinum jewelry, resize a platinum ring, or add a platinum head to an 18K shank. I’ve refused these jobs because I have no experience working with this metal. Can someone give me some pointers?

Thanks,

Berry McLoughlin

Answer

You’ll love working with platinum once you try it.  I understand your hesitancy, but don’t be afraid of repairing platinum jewelry. Platinum melts at a bit over 3,200º F. That means you can really lay the heat to it.  You won’t have the usual sudden melt dangers that accompany gold soldering when you’re working at only 1,900° F. The techniques for soldering platinum are identical to gold techniques. The difference with platinum is you work at a much higher temperature that’s actually safer.  Platinum will not oxidize, which enhances fusion. It’s a wonderfully malleable and ductile metal. It files and shapes easier than gold because it’s a bit harder. However, it’s still a soft metal.

Gerald Wykoff, CSM GG

“Aquamarine and Diamond Platinum brooch” by greyloch is CC By-SA 2.0
“Aquamarine and Diamond Platinum Brooch” by greyloch is CC By-SA 2.0