Thursday, July 02, 2009

Ugh.. repairs!

Some jewelers LOVE repairs, they see them as little puzzles to solve. I am not one of those jewelers. I can do repairs, but I don't enjoy it. I only take repairs from close friends and clients... and I always manage to get the nightmare jobs.

Here is one of them..

It is an estate piece from one of the Baltic States (either Latvia or Lithuania.) When it came to me, part of the band was missing and it had a chipped mine cut topaz. The client had an old rose cut diamond that she decided would fit in the setting perfectly. Did I mention that this belongs to my dry cleaner? So my dry cleaner insisted that the stone would fit perfectly... how could I say no?

Well, after breaking out the topaz (my favorite part... oh, how I do love smashing stuff) I went to replace the missing metal in the shank. The second I hit it with a flame it (1) turned completely black and (2) random solder started flowing. WEE! The gold is maybe 8 ct and it was full of soft solder (lead.) So, after spending time repairing the repair, I took a better look at the rose cut diamond.

The edges were fairly chipped and rough, and was slightly too large for the setting (I really couldn't open up the bezel) so I had to send it to the diamond cutter. They ground the girdle down just the slightest bit, keeping the shape. Then the stone could be set.

So, what was supposed to be a 'quick' repair took 2 weeks. WEE!

Meh, it's back together and Donna (my dry cleaner) will be very happy. And I can get my cleaning (Sal's shirts and suits) cleaned for a few weeks for free.

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