PARTICIPATORY SPORT FOR CRAFT ARTISTS
I use liver of sulphur to turn my silver jewelry black (gunmetal gray really) while not affecting the gold settings. Many people have come up to me at shows mentioning that I could plate the jewelry in Rhodium that is black and which would be much more permanent. Does anyone have some insight, resources or a general yes you can do it or definitely not...regarding this process?
You certainly can! You can either buy Black Rhodium salts from a supplier (Otto Frei stock it: http://www.ottofrei.com/store/product.php?productid=20145&cat=0...) or you can use a really old Rhodium bath that has become dirty and overheated! Obviously, the bought stuff is reliable.
I also found this ages ago:
Which might help.
wow, I never knew...is it just a bath? somehow I thought plating always involved electricity.
Have you ever used this?
I've only used Rio's Flat Black, which is probably a Midas solution, on gold. it antiques it. I always use a rectifier.
Never thought about trying it on Silver but I would guess as with gold plating on sterling you should put down a layer of nickle first. If it's fine silver then there shouldn't be a problem with copper migration. But it comes off with rubbing so you would need to seal it. Have you tried Midas Black Max? I hold my pieces under the hottest running water possible to heat them up then apply..it's wonderful stuff, no need to seal.
I have been researching this exact process! I have been told that ruthenium plating may be a more durable option from Dave at artisanplating.com. I have also found a place in the UK that does both black rhodium and ruthenium but I haven't heard back from them yet. I am going to send a small sample to Dave to see what he can do. I will keep you posted.
when you get your samples if you don't mind posting pictures, I'd be very interested to see the results.