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TOPIC: Gold leaf advise please.

Gold leaf advise please. 07 Jul 2017 16:49 #1

  • Kurt Rosenzweig
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Hi people. I've always wanted to give gilding a try. Just pick up a job for my local DAV (a freebie) . They are going to pay for all the materials so I figured this will be a good a time as any. I'm wanting to leaf the DAV letters then set them in pockets on the sign. The letters are going to be about 12" high and are very bold. Also it's going to be an outside sign in a coastal marine environment. I'm looking for advise on what carrot to buy, how much and a good supplier. I've been You Tubing it a bunch but figured it would be best to get the advice from the pros here. All input is very appreciated. Ty
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Gold leaf advise please. 08 Jul 2017 05:05 #2

  • Michael Mezalick
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Kurt,
I do a fair amount of gilding, mostly interior but I can offer a few tips that I've learned over the years.
The material to be gilded must be sound and clean.
A good base coat of high quality paint will work wonders.
I use an oil based high gloss yellow.
I choose the yellow colour to be close to the gold in case there are any holidays ,,,,the viewer will hardly notice.
And the smoother the base coat the "shinier" the gold can be.
I also use an oil size for the better work,,,I think it would last longer in an exterior environment.
The karat ( not carrot ) is the quality of the gold, 24K is pure gold while most gold leaf comes in different values, I use 23.5k.
I also use double gold leaf,,,it's not twice as think but is is thicker ( 20% thicker ) than the " normal" leaf,,,again, better of exterior applications.
I get my leaf from Sepp Leaf...www.seppleaf.com/sepp_leaf_products
T.R.MacMunn uses W&B Gold Leaf Co. www.wbgoldleaf.com/
Also, the colour is important,,,most people like the yellow gold colour...for something to be seen in the sun, I would not use too lite of a shade of gold.
And lastly, I but 50% more than I need.
Figure the surface area as the starting point.
The leaves are 3 1/8" square.
I hope this helps.
Michael
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Gold leaf advise please. 08 Jul 2017 05:14 #3

  • Michael Mezalick
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Kurt,
On a side note, you may want to go to the local Art& Craft store and buy some composition gold leaf.
It's not real and will tarnish very quickly, inside or out, but It's good to practice with,,,
It much less expensive than the real thing,

Michael
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Gold leaf advise please. 08 Jul 2017 21:09 #4

  • Dan Sawatzky
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We buy a box of gold about once a year. It is much less expensive this way than buying single books. I have tried various manufacturers through the years and like the gold at W&B Gold Leaf Co. www.wbgoldleaf.com/ I have found them great to deal with. I phone in my order and in a day or two at most have the gold on hand - great service! They are very friendly to deal with.

Gold is pretty easy to do and the results are spectacular. There is nothing like gold! Like Kurt says, the double gold is better.

-dan
Dan Sawatzky
Sawatzky's Imagination Corporation
Yarrow, British Columbia, Canada

www.imaginationcorporation.com


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Gold leaf advise please. 09 Jul 2017 17:29 #5

  • Kurt Rosenzweig
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Thanks for the input guys. One more thing. Im going to cut the letters separate and install them in a pocket. Do you think PVC is ok to leaf after a good coat of yellow oil base as you suggested?

Gold leaf advise please. 10 Jul 2017 06:39 #6

  • John Miller
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Hi Kurt,
We do quite a bit of gold leaf. I too buy mine from Sepp in New York. The smoother the base surface the better the final guild. We also underpaint with a ocher color but we use burnishing sealer (available from Sepp) it gives the size a great surface to adhere to. One more note, many suppliers offer Asian/Chinese gold leaf. It is even a bit thicker than double gold and is quite reasonable in price (about $650 per pack, 20 books) its only sold by the pack but becomes a bargain if you use much. Use slow oil size. Mix one part chrome yellow one shot lettering enamel to five parts slow oil size. Apply at the end of the day, your letters will be ready to guild at about 7AM. While preparing your letters, make a small test piece of the same material. Apply size on your test piece at the end of the day, wait till the morning and see if the size is ready, put your finger down firmly on the size and pull it toward you, if it makes a squeaking sound its ready. This test will reassure you that the actual job will be ready to guild after an evening drying (humidity and temperature are large factors in the proper cure) One more thing... only size what you feel comfortable guilding in about 1.5-2 hrs. The size is drying while you're working and you could lose the proper tack before you finish if there is too much area to guild. Good luck, have fun
Someday every things gonna be different... When I paint my masterpiece

Gold leaf advise please. 10 Jul 2017 18:14 #7

  • Michael Mezalick
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John,
Good advice,,,
If I can add just a few more details that we do.
I use the slow size for our big project, it's already tinted yellow..we get the best results....
We also do the old " knuckle " test...to test if the size is ready.
Bend your index finger and with the knuckle, touch the size,,then quickly pull away and you should hear a snap...Now the size is ready.
You really want to have the size "correct"..too dry and the gold won't stick,,,, too wet and the size will seep thru the gold and ruin the luster of the finish.
On a side note, I've found, for me, the colour of the Asian gold is not "gold" enough..if that make sense..but it's all a personal choice anyway..
Thanks for the info.
Michael
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Gold leaf advise please. 14 Jul 2017 14:03 #8

  • Leo Voisine
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I have yet to try gold leaf.

I want to and I will some day.

Sounds like pricing is about $1.50 - to $1.75 per sheet.

Now I am getting tempted to buy a pack to tuck away for my retirement investment.

Michael, can you tell me the particular products at Sep that you order? There are many different ones to choose from.
Leo

www.leosworkshop.com
Solidworks
Aspire
2424 Larken Camtol
MAXNC
Mach3
full hobby/sign/light business shop

Gold leaf advise please. 14 Jul 2017 14:30 #9

  • Michael Mezalick
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Leo,
I like the "Manetti" 23 karat brand...
Since most of my work does not require to have a "mirror" finish I use the patent leaf instead of the loose leaf..
Patent leaf is where the gold is adhered to a thin tissue ,,,mostly used for gilding in windy conditions....FYI, breathing too heavy with loose leaf could be considered a windy condition.
I can bring some up in August for you to try.
Better yet, if TR MacMunn is attending,,he's the expert...

Michael
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Gold leaf advise please. 14 Jul 2017 20:17 #10

  • Leo Voisine
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Both of you are attending.

I would be MORE than happy to pay for some sample and demo. If need be I can order all the supplies, but the gold is a bit beyond my reach for a pack. A book of two is OK.

I am going to get this set up before I retire in 3-1/2 years.
Leo

www.leosworkshop.com
Solidworks
Aspire
2424 Larken Camtol
MAXNC
Mach3
full hobby/sign/light business shop

Gold leaf advise please. 15 Jul 2017 06:13 #11

  • Michael Mezalick
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I'll check with TR....
But , in any case , I'll bring some stuff with me.

Michael
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