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  1. #1
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    Default How to Plug a Drill Hole?

    I've seen occasional references where a drilled through pearl is used in an earring leaving a remaining drill hole to be plugged. What material is used for the plug, and how resilient is this fix? Is this considered an acceptable practice or does it reduce the value of the end product? THANKS bead geeks!

  2. #2

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    I think you would use a head pin for that situation.

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    I have in fact designed a head pin into the solution in the past, but what I am referring to is a compound that is intended to fill and disguise the drill hole. I just don't know what's it's called or how well it works. This morning browsing one of Pearl Guides expert contributors with N online shop, I saw reference to a Drill Hole fill on a pair of Tahitian earrings. I have a project that has need of a fill or a different pearl, so hoping to learn from the experts how this fill is effected. Appreciate the response Matt, but in this case my project is a ring.

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    Member BrendaPC's Avatar
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    hi Jmd,

    What kind of pearls are we talking here? i just saw this post here you might want to check out:

    http://www.pearl-guide.com/forum/sho...988#post123988

    There is a discussion of concealing imperfections with sculpey and nailpolish, ( see response from "Caitlin"). Of Course this might not work in your situation, depending on the pearl but i think it would be a good fix for pearl with lots of different colors.

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    Pearl Scholar Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert pattye's Avatar
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    I've never seen any recommended industry wide process or material for filling unwanted drill holes; however that doesn't mean there isn't something like this. I suppose patching plaster like one uses for nail holes in walls might work. If the patch was in a place not hidden by a mounting, it would be visible upon close inspection. A dab of matching nail polish carefully applied could help to disguise the hole.

    Please do share here any info you find about other "fixes."
    Pattye


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    Hey Pattye: I had in fact just finished reading Caitlins post about sculpty. My needs are not nearly.as dramatic but I sure enjoyed Caitlins fearlessness!! So freshwater or Tahitian, if you had a predriiled hole and wanted to use a top mount what would you do with the bottom hole which will remain after placing a post in one of the holes? Typical problem when knotting a strand and you save two pearls for earrings but want to do something other than a head pin. I saw a Tahitian earring set listed on one of the very respected member websites and they noted that bottoms had plugged drill holes. Plugged with what is the question. Thanks, Judy D

  7. #7
    Natural Pearl Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert Marianne's Avatar
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    Realize this is not helpful, but, I just got a vision of itty bitty corks

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    Pearl Journalist Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert GemGeek's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Marianne View Post
    Realize this is not helpful, but, I just got a vision of itty bitty corks
    Ha! Then again, maybe they make metal plugs...
    GemGeek
    The World Is My Oyster!

  9. #9

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    I have seen, on Stuller's site I believe, basically a small cut off head in 14KY that is intended to be fixed into the hole, so we're not the only ones looking for a solution.

    Cecilia

  10. #10
    Pearl Scholar Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert pattye's Avatar
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    Judy,
    Well, if the drill hole is clearly visible such as it might be in a pearl ring, I truly can't imagine how to match the color and have it be virtually invisible. The bottom of an earring is probably less conspicuous. A pearl ring is also more likely to get wet than an earring, which could compromise a "fill." Perhaps the hole could be drilled out a bit more and a tiny gemstone set in? Just a thought~
    Pattye


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    Pattye, that's a brilliant idea when needing to plug a single drill hole!! I just dumped a 14k gold ring for scrap that had 9 or 10 small diamonds. Hated the ring and decided to convert the ring into "pearl money". Idiot that I am I never thought of recovering the diamonds are reusing them on pearls. Kicking myself in the butt big-time!! Thanks for the idea!!

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    Thanks Cecilia, that's a nice solution for finishing an earring, rather than leaving a hole. I noticed a pair or two of earrings I picked up in Manila have open drill holes on the undersides. And while you can't really see them during wear, they bother me because I see them taking the earrings on and off. Flush cutting a head pin and polishing the cut would give me a DIY solution. Thanks for the suggestion.

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    Sounds like they do indeed make metal plugs from Cecilias post below. And how can you beat Pattye' s suggestion - just fill it with a gem!! I'm off to experiment with digging a gem hole in my pearl!! FRESHWATER only to start!!

  14. #14
    Natural Pearl Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert BAS's Avatar
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    I think covering a drill hole of a pearl meant for a ring with a tiny gem is preferable to trying to cover it up in any other way -- speaking from a consumer's perspective.

  15. #15
    Pearl Scholar Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert pattye's Avatar
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    This is what Derek Lusk does with gems including diamonds and 18k bezels. Spoke with him a few years back about setting a few custom ones for me, and it seemed reasonable cost, which of course, I can't exactly recall.
    Pattye


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