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View Full Version : Any earring makers use surgical steel?


sassybird
03-15-2004, 06:36 PM
I have a lot of sterling silver earings that I've been told can not be cleaned since they hold either semi precious stones, or they have other enhancements that would be affected by jewelry cleaners. What I would like to switch over to is surgical steel hoops, french hoops ect.....

TheBlueBetween
03-15-2004, 09:51 PM
I've been wondering how surgical steel would sell. It sure would be easier to keep clean than sterling. I've also been wondering about white gold as an option. But then it's expensive to make and buy as well...

Neatneatneat
03-15-2004, 09:58 PM
I have a lot of sterling silver earings that I've been told can not be cleaned since they hold either semi precious stones, or they have other enhancements that would be affected by jewelry cleaners.

Are the stones claw set or glued, and what are the enhancements?


What I would like to switch over to is surgical steel hoops, french hoops ect.....

Most of the more modern jewellery for Body Art is either implant quality surgical steel or titanium.
cheers,

sassybird
03-15-2004, 10:18 PM
There are a lot of people that need hypoallergenic metal like the surgical steel, I think it would sell well. I love silver, some of mine is in a claw setting, and others glued. Some of the jewelry is over 30 years old, and I don't want to lose them.

Neatneatneat
03-15-2004, 10:29 PM
There are a lot of people that need hypoallergenic metal like the surgical steel, I think it would sell well. I love silver, some of mine is in a claw setting, and others glued. Some of the jewelry is over 30 years old, and I don't want to lose them.

I've not come across jewellery that can't cleaned. For surgical steel or titanium (which has replaced surgical steel in medicine to an extent) try your local body piercers, if you have one.
Watch out for very cheap deals though, I was offered some very cheap imports from Thailand, had a goldsmith chum check them out under a microscope and they were so pitted to effectively be porous.
cheers,

sassybird
03-15-2004, 11:50 PM
Thank you very much for that information. We have a place in my tiny town that does tatoos and body piercing. I will definitely go over and talk to them. I imagine that their products are tops because word spreads fast in a small town when someone is trying to scam the public:)

lunamoonshadow
03-16-2004, 12:07 AM
I use surgical steel on my "cheapie" earrings--rather than plated metals or nickle silver. Makes for more sales to kids, when mommy knows it isn't going to turn their ears green!
I find most grown-ups won't pay for surgical wires on "quality" beads/stones though--it's seen as "inferior" if it isn't sterling--go figure! I do keep some with me for quick changes for anyone who requests surgical wires though!
As far as cleaning sterling--if it's just the wires--you can use Tarn-X just dampened on a q-tip--it's how I clean all my wires--even if they're on pearls--just DON'T GET IT ON THE BEADS!!!
Otherwise, a jewelers Rouge-cloth or Sunshine Cloth will take most of the tarnish/dirt off without hurting most stones--I'd be super cautious with opal, pearl, or very soft stuff (turquoise too!)--but with care they can be cleaned successfully!
--Lyn

saucy
03-16-2004, 02:12 AM
I have allergies to base metals and I would definitely wear surgical steel. It's a lot less to clean than SS.

earthenwood
03-16-2004, 10:06 AM
I use surgical steel earwires on all the earrings I make to sell. My earrings are porcelain bead earrings that sell for $15-$30, and I have found that people usually like the surgical steel option. If my earrings used more precious materials, there might be a question about not using sterling or gold, though.

Surgical steel is much less expensive in earwires than other metal options. I get mine from Rio Grande and Rings & Things. I forget which one, but one of those companies has Nickel Free Surgical Steel, to cover all allergy bases.

The only real problem is that they dont have a lot of good options design wise, like euro wires or fancy designs, available in surgical (at least not that I've seen) Also, I have found that the color is a bit darker than sterling, so it may look a little funny next to shiny sterling.

Hope that helps!

Barrie
03-16-2004, 10:32 AM
Crest toothpaste, running water and a soft toothbrush will clean all your silver - hold the piece in the palm of your hand, get it wet, gently scrub (okay, not so gently!!), and the toothpaste will remove all the tarnish, then rinse. Safe on all stones too. Shouldn't affect glue either, unless it's cheap white glue! Epoxy is water resistant. Some pieces just cannot go near harsh chemicals as tarn-x etc.

Neatneatneat
03-16-2004, 10:16 PM
Crest toothpaste, running water and a soft toothbrush will clean all your silver - hold the piece in the palm of your hand, get it wet, gently scrub (okay, not so gently!!), and the toothpaste will remove all the tarnish, then rinse. Safe on all stones too.

Safe on all stones bar opals, one of the few stones which are porus and should never be dampened with anything. :D
cheers,

kiwicockatoo
03-16-2004, 10:30 PM
II find most grown-ups won't pay for surgical wires on "quality" beads/stones though--it's seen as "inferior" if it isn't sterling--go figure! I do keep some with me for quick changes for anyone who requests surgical wires though!


I have one of those modular italian charm bracelets. It's stainless steel. It's bright, shiny, won't tarnish and best of all non allergenic. Recently someone asked me if it was sterling and when I said it was steel they got that look in their eye.... and immediately lost interest in it!

I have tonnes of sterling rings with all kinds of stones. I'm not too careful about cleaning them, I didn't know you could harm the stones with the silver polish. I haven't done any harm yet, but I guess I should be careful. Especially on my nice opal earring my hubby gave me when we were dating. I guess I learn something new every day!

Neatneatneat
03-18-2004, 06:25 PM
... Especially on my nice opal earring my hubby gave me when we were dating. I guess I learn something new every day!

Almost unique to Opal, but of course it's the situationalism that's important there, that piece is priceless to you. I think any opposition to SSS or Titanium is pure marketeers snobbery. It's like synthetic diamonds, the big natural dealers want to protect their market. SSS is the new .925 baby!
Problem is it's harder to work and therefore can be more expensive.
cheers,