Gold SS: polishing scratches

mkstewartesq@co

macrumors regular
Original poster
Jun 30, 2007
171
24
Hello, all:

I am thinking of taking the plunge in buying my first Apple Watch – I am leaning toward a stainless steel model, and really like the gold.

My question goes to: if it gets slight scratches, how does one get rid of those, if at all? I know with the normal stainless steel watch, one can use a Cape Cod polishing cloth or some other metal polish – but my understanding is that the gold is simply a coating on top of the stainless steel, so it seems like polishing out scratches in the gold may well simply end up removing the finish. Anyone have any ideas?

Thanks,
Mike
 

jschu22

macrumors 6502
Apr 12, 2008
255
183
Hello, all:

I am thinking of taking the plunge in buying my first Apple Watch – I am leaning toward a stainless steel model, and really like the gold.

My question goes to: if it gets slight scratches, how does one get rid of those, if at all? I know with the normal stainless steel watch, one can use a Cape Cod polishing cloth or some other metal polish – but my understanding is that the gold is simply a coating on top of the stainless steel, so it seems like polishing out scratches in the gold may well simply end up removing the finish. Anyone have any ideas?

Thanks,
Mike
I would highly advise against it for the reason you stated.

Now if it’s anything like the Space Black, it won’t scratch easily but I’m fairly sure it’s not since the black is a DLC coating and extremely durable.
 

CreepyAF

macrumors regular
Sep 23, 2018
188
195
Behind you
PVD for the gold is not as durable as DLC for the black, however, it is also dependent on the manufacturer doing the coating. im hoping apple chose a highly reputable company to do the gold finishes, and i hope they tested the durability of the coating. i am also unsure as to how one would deal with scratches on the gold SS... it may be like aluminum in which u just deal with it.

my space grey series 0 had zero scratches on the body, and one minute faint scratch on the lens. i think it depends on the person how careful they are in protecting the watch. if i were clumsy, i'd probably go for the DLC coating.
 

Relentless Power

macrumors Nehalem
Jul 12, 2016
33,182
34,185
Hello, all:

I am thinking of taking the plunge in buying my first Apple Watch – I am leaning toward a stainless steel model, and really like the gold.

My question goes to: if it gets slight scratches, how does one get rid of those, if at all? I know with the normal stainless steel watch, one can use a Cape Cod polishing cloth or some other metal polish – but my understanding is that the gold is simply a coating on top of the stainless steel, so it seems like polishing out scratches in the gold may well simply end up removing the finish. Anyone have any ideas?

Thanks,
Mike
You can’t use a polishing cloth on a PVD coating or DLC. It will tarnish the coating or diminish the actual coating. If the DLC on the black stainless or PVD on the gold stainless scratches, it’s permanent. Where as the regular 316 L stainless Apple Watch, if that scratches, that can be removed with a polishing cloth.
 
Last edited:

Newtons Apple

Suspended
Mar 12, 2014
22,759
15,219
Jacksonville, Florida
PVD for the gold is not as durable as DLC for the black, however, it is also dependent on the manufacturer doing the coating. im hoping apple chose a highly reputable company to do the gold finishes, and i hope they tested the durability of the coating. i am also unsure as to how one would deal with scratches on the gold SS... it may be like aluminum in which u just deal with it.

my space grey series 0 had zero scratches on the body, and one minute faint scratch on the lens. i think it depends on the person how careful they are in protecting the watch. if i were clumsy, i'd probably go for the DLC coating.
The gold coating is only microns thick so there would be no polishing a gold iPhone.
 

Renjo2007

macrumors regular
Sep 18, 2012
132
54
AZ
Hello, all:

I am thinking of taking the plunge in buying my first Apple Watch – I am leaning toward a stainless steel model, and really like the gold.

My question goes to: if it gets slight scratches, how does one get rid of those, if at all? I know with the normal stainless steel watch, one can use a Cape Cod polishing cloth or some other metal polish – but my understanding is that the gold is simply a coating on top of the stainless steel, so it seems like polishing out scratches in the gold may well simply end up removing the finish. Anyone have any ideas?

Thanks,
Mike
I think it’s not advisable to polish a gold ss if get scratched. This is the main reason I chose the regular ss as my first ss watch because I have the flexibility to just polish if get scratched.
 
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CreepyAF

macrumors regular
Sep 23, 2018
188
195
Behind you
The gold coating is only microns thick so there would be no polishing a gold iPhone.
I think it’s not advisable to polish a gold ss if get scratched. This is the main reason I chose the regular ss as my first ss watch because I have the flexibility to just polish if get scratched.
well with the gold SS u can polish it till you get a new colour which is regular silver SS so it's a win-win. and i think i would like an ombre gold-silver SS tbh.
 

MadRed

macrumors newbie
Aug 16, 2013
26
12
well with the gold SS u can polish it till you get a new colour which is regular silver SS so it's a win-win. and i think i would like an ombre gold-silver SS tbh.
Any update on what can be done to remove or buff out scratches on Gold SS Watch?
 

Relentless Power

macrumors Nehalem
Jul 12, 2016
33,182
34,185
Any update on what can be done to remove or buff out scratches on Gold SS Watch?
The answer is you cannot. Because there is a PVD coating on the stainless gold watch, and if you use any type of polishing compound/substance, you will cause a separation to remove that coating.
 
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Azathoth123

macrumors 6502a
Sep 13, 2018
714
465
Fountain City
BTW, the comments are true of a gold- or silver-plated anything - you will not be able to polish scratches out. If this is a significant thing for you, the unplated ‘silver’ stainless would be a better choice, as anything that you wear on your hands, rings, watches, bracelets will sooner or later pick up scratches and dings.
 

CreepyAF

macrumors regular
Sep 23, 2018
188
195
Behind you
That’s why I chose the black, because even though I loved the gold hue and the novelty of a new color, ultimately I wanted something with proven durability. I wasn’t sure how durable the PVD coating was... so far the black has shown no signs of wear
 

Relentless Power

macrumors Nehalem
Jul 12, 2016
33,182
34,185
That’s why I chose the black, because even though I loved the gold hue and the novelty of a new color, ultimately I wanted something with proven durability. I wasn’t sure how durable the PVD coating was... so far the black has shown no signs of wear
For those who don’t know, the additional durability comes from the DLC (Diamond Like Carbon), much more scratch resistant over the PVD, And is a more stringent of a process to incorporate. Hopefully Apple continues to offer the Black stainless with the DLC offered.
 
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Harytran26985

macrumors newbie
Apr 29, 2019
7
2
England
why are gold stainless aw easy to scratch? i used both iphone x silver and iphone xs max gold and i figured out that xs max was more durable than x.
 

Azathoth123

macrumors 6502a
Sep 13, 2018
714
465
Fountain City
I’ve had my gold S4 since release and no scratches visible to the eye yet. I do take reasonable precautions such as removing the Watch when scrubbing the kitchen or doing yard work, or wearing work gloves that cover the Watch to some degree.

Gold is gold, soft by nature regardless of how it is applied, and I think we must acknowledge that if worn long enough, scratches will happen. I have a 40+ year old Rolex with many battle scars - I love every one of them.

Embrace your inner wabi-sabi!

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wabi-sabi
 

Relentless Power

macrumors Nehalem
Jul 12, 2016
33,182
34,185
why are gold stainless aw easy to scratch? i used both iphone x silver and iphone xs max gold and i figured out that xs max was more durable than x.
The gold stainless has a PVD coating, which stands for Physical Vapor Deposition, and it’s basically a thin layer to help protect the casing from minor scratches and scuffs. It’s not nearly as durable as the diamond like carbon coating (DLC) on the black stainless. The problem with the gold stainless, is you cannot buff-out the scratches, due to the PVD coating.
 
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alpi123

macrumors 65816
Jun 18, 2014
1,276
1,305
The gold stainless has a PVD coating, which stands for Physical Vapor Deposition, and it’s basically a thin layer to help protect the casing from minor scratches and scuffs. It’s not nearly as durable as the diamond like carbon coating (DLC) on the black stainless. The problem with the gold stainless, is you cannot buff-out the scratches, due to the PVD coating.
Does the Xs Space Gray also use DLC?
 
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