Melting down RAW gold questions.

Forum: Jewelry Making

Hey, I am new to the site. I have been slowly building a bracelet for years as I gain more knowledge and understanding of the process of making a fine-quality custom piece. As I afford more, I add more to the bracelet, in terms of higher quality materials and gems.

Basically, I currently have a bracelet with four, 5mm round turquoise beads I bought years ago from a gemologist site that is no longer around (that I know of). I also have four, similar sized Swarovski crystal beads. I then got, I BELIEVE, a gold-plated (or gold filled) necklace and took it apart to made it shorter to create the segments between the beads.

I want to learn more about replacing this chain with higher-quality items. I want this to be a long-lasting “heirloom” type piece once it is most complete. I have looked into raw gold nuggets and things but I do not know how I could get that melted down into pieces to make up the chain. Does anyone have suggestions on places that melt down RAW gold? When I look it up, it seems that most people are looking to melt down old jewelry. This is not the case, I am considering taking the RAW gold nuggets or something and melting it down. I would like ANY and ALL information about the process of taken any sort or RAW gold material and making a chain.

Does anyone know jewelers that would work with raw gold? Any suggestions an making a high quality gold chain for bracelets using raw gold? Any suggestions and info is more than welcome. Just confused on how to start looking around. Very new to this stuff.

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2 Replies

Wandering Rock Designs ...

Raw nuggets are actually more valuable than their weight typically because they can be used in jewelry as a focal piece. Now finer gold would be worth just it’s weight typically depending on it’s purity, but why not just buy a made chain. Or you could use casting grains, an ingot mold, a MAP gas torch and a rolling mill to make your own if that’s your goal to craft your own chain from raw materials, then you would know the purity of the gold.

NYSilvergirl ...

I would say, it depends on the nugget. I have a friend and he is collecting natural gold nuggets and minerals. He pays for nuggets weighing 3 grams and less not more than the current gold price.

There are so many factors coming together

  • Size and shape
  • Weight
  • Origin
  • Purity
  • connected to quartz or even other metals like silver or copper

I would not say, never melt a nugget down as most just go for gold. Very unique nuggets can get you a premium but most don’t. Think about all those mines from the US over Canada, Africa, Australia etc. All those mining operations would stop melting down their nuggets if the premium would be THAT attractive. I don’t see that although I love my friend’s collection.