Two of Europe’s leading producers of precious metal and alloy powders exhibited their range of products at Baselworld 2017, the leading global market place for the watch and jewellery industries held in Basel, Switzerland, March 23-30.
Hilderbrand & Cie, based in Thonex (Geneva), Switzerland, uses state of the art atomisation technology and classification and analytical equipment to produce pure and alloy forms of precious metal powders based on gold, platinum, palladium and silver for use in the jewellery and watchmaking industries.
The company states that its powders are tailored to today’s market demands for innovative manufacturing processes such as Metal Injection Moulding, metal Additive Manufacturing and powder spraying. The company has also been producing precious and non-precious metal brazing pastes for the jewellery and watch sectors since 1972 and offers a complete range of pastes which, it states, not only offers users substantial economies of materials, time and inventories, but also a significant improvement in the quality and appearance of their finished products. The company has been part of C.Hafner of Winsheim, Germany, since 2013, a family owned company focusing on high-tech products and solutions in the precious metals industry.
Cooksongold, based in Birmingham, United Kingdom, is part of the Heimerle + Meule Group, one of Europe’s largest refiners and processors of precious metals. The company exhibited its range of Advanced Metal Powders produced by gas atomisation, which included 18 k 3N yellow gold, 18 k white gold, 18 k 5N red gold, Brilliante 925 silver, and an addition to its existing portfolio of a new platinum alloy powder designated 950 Pt/Ru, first launched in collaboration with the Platinum Guild International (PGI) in 2016.
The Advanced Metal Powder range from Cooksongold is said to be ideal for a number of processes, including Metal Injection Moulding. Whilst there appears to be growing interest in MIM for the production of jewellery, the company stated that its new 950 Pt/Ru alloy powder has been specifically developed for Additive Manufacturing. This ensures that, once the designs have been built in the Precious M 080 AM machine developed for this application by EOS, Germany, they can be post-processed, milled and polished to the high standards required without any of the common problems associated with other Pt alloys.