Gold Plating on Gretschs, what is it?

Discussion in 'Technical Side of Things' started by Stefan87, Aug 11, 2020.

  1. Stefan87

    Stefan87 Synchromatic

    864
    May 20, 2019
    Brisbane, Australia
    Hey Guys,

    Am looking at doing some aesthetic mods on my penguin that would need to be gold like everything else on it, seeing a it will be metal I want to get it plated the same so it matches.

    Does anyone know exactly what the plating is? is it just colored zinc or is it actually gold? not really that knowledgeable on all this that's all.

    Any help is appreciated.

    Thanks.
     
    ZackyDog likes this.
  2. cowmoo

    cowmoo Country Gent

    Aug 19, 2011
    North Wales
    I hope it’s not real gold as i always rub it off with brasso!o_O
     
    Stefan87 likes this.
  3. Synchro

    Synchro The artist formerly known as: Synchro Staff Member

    Jun 2, 2008
    Tucson
    Admin Post
    Almost certainly a very thin plating of gold. There are differences in plating, but I would think that whoever does the plating should be aware and be able to easily match what is on there already.
     
    Stefan87 likes this.
  4. Jeff67

    Jeff67 Country Gent

    Age:
    53
    Nov 3, 2019
    Crockett, Texas
    Pure gold doesn't tarnish. Gold is one of the least reactive of all the elements. Gold coins recovered from centuries- old shipwrecks will look like they were just minted. For it to tarnish, it has to be alloyed with something.
     
  5. afire

    afire Country Gent

    In the old days, Gretsch said it was 24k gold plating. It wouldn't surprise me if that was still the case. It's such a thin layer that it's not as though there's a significant amount of it.
    [​IMG]
     
    Groutsch and r0de0 like this.
  6. Synchro

    Synchro The artist formerly known as: Synchro Staff Member

    Jun 2, 2008
    Tucson
    Admin Post
    Gold can be plated in exceptionally thin layers, so there's really no reason to skimp on it. I've had gold hardware start looking bad, but that's usually a matter of wear. Gold is pretty easy to rub off.
     
    mrfixitmi likes this.
  7. G5422T

    G5422T Country Gent

    May 24, 2012
    usa
    Not sure what the Gretsch plating specs are, but there's a major difference between Proline gold plating and Electromatic gold plating.

    That said, the Custom Shop rubs most if it off! Lol
     
    Tadhg and Stefan87 like this.
  8. afire

    afire Country Gent

    I'm the opposite. That's when it starts looking good to me. I love the look of worn gold plating that's largely faded to dull nickel.
     
    G5422T likes this.
  9. thunder58

    thunder58 Super Moderator Staff Member

    Age:
    61
    Dec 23, 2010
    tappan ny
    Admin Post
    Maybe this helps ( just makes ya think a bit ) . As of Wednesday , August 12 , 2020 at 2010 hrs EST
    Screen Shot 2020-08-12 at 8.10.16 PM.png
     
    ZackyDog and Stefan87 like this.
  10. G5422T

    G5422T Country Gent

    May 24, 2012
    usa
    I love real "play wear." It's fun playing a guitar! Lol
     
    Stefan87 likes this.
  11. Stefan87

    Stefan87 Synchromatic

    864
    May 20, 2019
    Brisbane, Australia
    When it comes time to plate it I think I'll just take the guitar with me and ask the platers and make sure they can match it, I always thought that it was actually gold but thought someone on here might know exactly.

    I was of the understanding it was like that back then, but wasn't sure now, with what people and companies can come up with these days i wouldn't be surprised if it was something like gold but less expensive and easier to find.

    Hmmm, maybe I can rub all the gold of the existing parts, sell it and then get it chrome plated instead lol.
     
    thunder58 likes this.
  12. tartanphantom

    tartanphantom Friend of Fred

    Age:
    57
    Jul 30, 2008
    Murfreesboro, TN
    Q: Gold Plating on Gretschs, what is it?

    A: very, very, very thin.
     
  13. wabash slim

    wabash slim Gretschified

    Age:
    70
    Feb 10, 2010
    lafayette in
    Hokey Smokes! I didn't know that it had gotten that high. It wasn't that long ago when it was $350/oz. Hell, I remember when the US was on the Gold Standard. Times gave changed.
     
    thunder58 and Stefan87 like this.
  14. montereyjack66

    montereyjack66 Country Gent

    Feb 29, 2012
    LA-ish
    I encourage you to consider the possibilities of going with a mid-century marine grade rust. Gold has it's virtues, but not like a good rust.
     
    sgarnett and Stefan87 like this.
  15. wabash slim

    wabash slim Gretschified

    Age:
    70
    Feb 10, 2010
    lafayette in
    Only a few molecules thin.
     
    Stefan87 likes this.
  16. Synchro

    Synchro The artist formerly known as: Synchro Staff Member

    Jun 2, 2008
    Tucson
    Admin Post
    That’s what I was thinking. I know that gold leaf is exceptionally thin.
     
    Stefan87 likes this.
  17. wabash slim

    wabash slim Gretschified

    Age:
    70
    Feb 10, 2010
    lafayette in
    Gold leaf is thick in comparison.
     
    Stefan87 likes this.
  18. Synchro

    Synchro The artist formerly known as: Synchro Staff Member

    Jun 2, 2008
    Tucson
    Admin Post
    It has nothing to do with plating, but I’ve heard that gold can be hammered down to incredibly thin sheets and still hold together.
     
    sgarnett and Stefan87 like this.
  19. wabash slim

    wabash slim Gretschified

    Age:
    70
    Feb 10, 2010
    lafayette in
    I've seen gold leaf worked onto an old fire engine restoration. Incredibly thin isn't an understatement. Plating is even thinner. Consider that it is often used in electronics for connectors and contacts and can still be somewhat affordable. It's even put into alcoholic beverages---i.e., Goldschlager---and in some foods for the ultra wealthy---in flake form and can be safely consumed. Then consider what happens to it---it goes right down the drain. Maybe that's why some guy in Japan made a gold plated toilet.
     
    Stefan87 likes this.
  20. afire

    afire Country Gent

    That's disturbing. I have a small collection of 1920s and early 1930s Gruen watches. I only collect solid metal examples (i.e. not plated or filled), steel, silver, but mostly solid gold. In the past, the actual value of the gold was relatively minor compared to the collectible value of the watches. I'm set to bid on a watch tomorrow with a heavy 18k case. I would have valued it at around $1000 or so, but if other bidders are taking scrap value into account, the case alone is probably worth more than that. And I not infrequently see orphaned movements that I can identify as having come from fabulously rare solid gold watches that have been scrapped. I can expect to see more of that. Ugh.
     
    Stefan87 likes this.
IMPORTANT: Treat everyone here with respect, no matter how difficult!
No sex, drug, political, religion or hate discussion permitted here.