Gold plating repair?

Kent

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Mike:

The link isn't opening for me right now.

Anything less than a really heavy gold-plating will wear off shortly - The brass is on the high spots, right!

One of your compatriots, Dr. Richard French, once described a successful method of replating a worn-through gold-filled case. It was a long, involved (read that as expensive) process requiring removing all of the remaining gold and then building up a thick(?) plating of new gold. The purpose of doing it this was was to make the color uniform and to remove the existing gold-to-brass edges. At the end of it all, you're left with a shiny, worn-out case.

Oh yeah, you can forget about any engraved pattern, it'll be long gone.

However, if you're bound to do it, yellow gold is not the correct color, its yellow-white gold.


P.S. The file opened. I've seen the process - it leaves a very, very thin layer of plating. It won't last a week if you actually wear the watch, longer if you only wipe it off with a soft cloth once in a while.
 

Kevin W.

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I have a case which was re plated.the old gold was not removed in the process.It came out looking better but the plating was not even.
I wonder how some of the do it your self plating kits work and if they give good results.
I was thinking once of trying a kit from Caskers plating, i think they are called.
 

Jon Hanson

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A of this is a waste of time and money!:bang:
 

Kevin W.

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Re plating a watch case that has gold plating is not the best route to go.
If i had some pictures to show it would be easier to understand what i am trying to explain.
 

Jon Hanson

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Sheila Gilbert

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I have found that keeping an old case the way it is, is the best solution for me.

Cleaning the case, and letting the old finish stay as it is, to me, is keeping the vintage quality intact, especially if the case looks original.

I've come to the conclusion that althought I love to see a pristine case, a worn watch case is still a wonderful thing to see, considering all of the UNCASED movements we see today. Better a case that has seen some hard times, than no case at all.

Just as patina is a sign that the specialists look for in furnature, our watches are no different to me.

Lets face it, nothing sparkles like a FINE watch case, but I have some really nice gold filled cases with serious edge wear, that are still fine examples of a vanishing art.

I believe that we are coming close to a time when having ANY CASE AT ALL will be a plus.

Shoot, I even like my brass cases more and more.

All of them, are Pieces of Art and History for sure!
 

RePLATEit

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Hello everybody. I have been replating watch cases for olmost 10 years now and I read your comments with great interest because all of you described common problems when cases are NOT plated by PROFFESIONALS.
I will try to explain you how it works in a few words.

Most of the times when you give your cases to your watchmaker or jeweller for refinishing, it is done with "do-it-yourself kits" like the ones shown on youtube. These are NOT designed to plate a thick layer of gold and so they don't cover any imperfections. These platings are about 0.1 of a micron thick, that translates to a plating that will wear out in just a few months, compare to the original gold field layer that is guaranteed to last 20 years. This is because "gold-field" is not a plating deposit, but an actual sheet of gold on the base metal such as brass.
The proper way to refinish a watch case is to deep polish it untill the surface is completely smooth and than gold plate the desired thickness. The more gold we put on the piece, the more it will last, the more it will cost. Plating can be done extremely thick, up to a few hundred microns. The problem when plating in such thicknesess is that we need to remove some of the old plating before we re-plate to assure that the covers will snap properly. All these processess are time consuming and so the more compex the work gets, the more it will cost. But most of the time the cases are in descent condition and a simple buff and DIRECT gold plating is enough. Direct plating to assure that some of the original plating will remain on the case.
If you have any questions feel free to contact me!
 

turboflyer

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Hello everybody. I have been replating watch cases for olmost 10 years now and I read your comments with great interest because all of you described common problems when cases are NOT plated by PROFFESIONALS.
I will try to explain you how it works in a few words.

Most of the times when you give your cases to your watchmaker or jeweller for refinishing, it is done with "do-it-yourself kits" like the ones shown on youtube. These are NOT designed to plate a thick layer of gold and so they don't cover any imperfections. These platings are about 0.1 of a micron thick, that translates to a plating that will wear out in just a few months, compare to the original gold field layer that is guaranteed to last 20 years. This is because "gold-field" is not a plating deposit, but an actual sheet of gold on the base metal such as brass.
The proper way to refinish a watch case is to deep polish it untill the surface is completely smooth and than gold plate the desired thickness. The more gold we put on the piece, the more it will last, the more it will cost. Plating can be done extremely thick, up to a few hundred microns. The problem when plating in such thicknesess is that we need to remove some of the old plating before we re-plate to assure that the covers will snap properly. All these processess are time consuming and so the more compex the work gets, the more it will cost. But most of the time the cases are in descent condition and a simple buff and DIRECT gold plating is enough. Direct plating to assure that some of the original plating will remain on the case.
If you have any questions feel free to contact me!
So now you have been doing this 20 plus years, I hope. Would very much like to apply your experience to a c1880 French 4 glass. Seems it is possible.
 

musicguy

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Moving to watch repair


Rob
 

glenhead

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I used RePLATEit to recondition and replate a Benrus case in early 2015 and posted the results in this thread:

Replating a Benrus link

I won't repeat what I said in the thread, other than to repeat that Peter at RePLATEit does spectacular work. If you want to have a case replated, give him a holler. You won't be disappointed.

Glen
 

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