Re-using Heirloom Gold and Metals

It makes perfect sense to have the thought, “I’m going to use the gold from my grandparents wedding bands and this bracelet I never wear to make something new!”

Melt down the metal and design something you love and has sentimental value. It’s logical, seems easy enough, and it can happen to some degree, or it can go towards your new design in the form of a repurposed metal credit. Here we apply this money towards your project.

Let’s be certain your expectations are clear when you decide to use your heirloom metals to create new jewelry.

Melting down a wedding band.

Why and when it’s a good idea –

For a simple design, like a wedding band or simple pendant with no gems, melting down your heirloom gold is an option.

To stay connected to a person, or people, who wore the jewelry you are using.

You are not looking to save money when re-using your gold. The time it takes for our jewelers to carefully work with your gold is greater than with new gold. Jewelers will also typically need more gold, for which there is a cost, to help move, shape, and create your finished piece.

The resulting ignot to work into a customer’s project.

Why and when it’s a bit more difficult –

Gold can be a good option for reuse; however, platinum is not an option. It has too high of a melting point.

If your design will have gems set into it, it’s best not to use heirloom gold. The gold can have impurities that could compromise the safety of the setting. The prongs holding your gems would be more likely to be brittle and breakable. Sometimes the settings can be made of new gold and the band from the heirloom gold.

Our jeweler, Mike, hammering the gold into a simple pendant.

Often, designs are cast. Typically, casting companies are not willing to use heirloom gold, and if they are, there is no way to be certain it would be used.

We have exceptional quality standards at Brown Goldsmith’s and the unknowns of heirloom metals are our biggest hurdle. Damaging contaminates, such as chlorine or the solder that was used to construct the heirloom piece can erode the gold making it extremely porous. Sometimes a jeweler can detect chlorine exposure, but most times they cannot and the finished piece of new jewelry won’t be as beautiful or last as long as it would using clean gold. They will have the ultimate say in what can be done with your heirloom metals.



The perfect sentimental “new” design with diamond accent and engraving.

We hope this information has been helpful to understand the re-use of your heirloom jewelry/gold. If your plans line up with these facts, we’d love to get started on your project and please feel free to read about Custom Jewelry Design to further understand that process and re-using your gems.