DIY solid gold interconnects?

I have an 8wpc amp using el34's connecting to a McIntosh MX130 pre-amp to an Esoteric Z500, Plus some other stuff for HT. I recently read an article about the use of single wire connects. It seems to me that the best connects would be made purely of a single 12-13g rhodium plated solid gold wire that would be encased in something else. What I do for a living would make this quite possible and easy for me to concoct, but I would like some input as to weather or not this would be the way to go.
Some folks argue against "plated" or coated/dipped wire. Pure gold might be too flimsy/soft to hold up to "handling & bending" Probably hard to find ".999999" pure gold wire free of contaminants etc. (easier to find silver or copper that pure?)My opinion would be that cable geometry, inductance, capacitance, resistence would be more important than the conductor material itself...And as with all DIY stuff if it sucks it's yours, no good way to pass it along.
Gold is not as good a electric conductor as silver or copper so why do you think gold wire is the way to go?
Well, I was under the impression that gold was a much better conductor than either copper or silver as it does not oxidize very easy. There are also much fewer impurities in the gold than silver or copper, both are fraught with cruddy alloys. By rhodium plating the gold you would then have an even more conductive currant. Why would so many parts be gold plated if not? Again, I don't know if this is the way to go and would love to hear if anyone has tried to use solid gold. Although malleable, it would, after having been annealed be a stiff non moving wire that would stay right where I bend it. Being a jeweler with the ability to fabricate and mill gold wire with some ease and being much less expensive [to me] than out right buying something pre manufactured by a high falutin' cord company of seemingly lesser quality, I thought maybe... I also understand that these same companies make an entire life's work from the cords they put together just the right sounding or "least" sounding cords. Being that transparency is all of our goal.
There are a number of threads commenting about gold wire (worth a search in the archives). I do not know of one referring to rhodium plating though it is easy enough to search the archives for that too. There are a number of "recipes" posted here and elsewhere for DIY single strand interconnects and I personally think Jadem6's thread on making/testing/reviewing interconnect materials/geometry is one of the classics on Audiogon.
Gold is not a very good conductor at all. RCAs and tube pins, etc are plated very thinly(as you observed) simply because gold does not oxidize. Silver's conductivity is not affected when it tarnishes, but it looks bad, so most people that sell silver connectors on their interconnects(like Silver Audio) include a special cleaning cloth with them, Actually the best connectors are made of solid, oxygen free copper. You just have to make and break your connections every so often the keep the juice flowing properly. Caig Deoxit is great for cleaning connectors, and blocking oxygen/dirt from the contact area.
Uh, just because gold is not a good conductor doesn't mean it doesn't sound good. You want to sit on your couch and listen to music, not sit on the ground behind your system with an oscilloscope, right? A lot of the hot new interconnects on Audiogon use gold as conductors. Check out the threads on the Gabriel Gold Revelation, KCI Silkworm, and the cables from Jade Audio. The reason the "high end" cable manufacturers don't use gold in their interconnects isn't because it's a bad conductor, but rather it's too expensive. These manufacturers sell their cables to dealers who double the price before selling to you. Making gold cables would be prohibitively expensive to these people, because gold is already expensive before the dealer markup. Gabriel Gold, KCI, and Jade Audio sell their interconnects direct, so they can afford to utilize gold. I have tried gold, silver, and copper interconnects, and I (and many others) feel that interconnects containing gold give you the best tonality, especially with vocals.

I agree that you should check out Jadem6's thread about interconnects. I use his interconnects in my system (Jade Audio Hybrids), and I can tell you he knows what he's doing! I would warn you that although it sounds like you can easily make wire from precious metals, getting them to sound good in an interconnect requires so much trial and error that you may be better off saving your time and paying someone else who has already done this!

"Gold is not a very good conductor at all."

That is actually incorrect, though gold isn't quite as good a conductor as copper and silver it actually is a good conductor, not sure why some many people believe otherwise?

12 awg would not be "flimsy" at all but would cost a nice chunk of money. A 1M set of IC's takes 13' of wire, at your stated 12 awg you're looking at aprox. 8 oz of gold. At $1000 an ounce you're looking at $8000 just in metal value for a 1M set. I've done a lot of testing and thicker wire isn't always better, you'd be better off not using such a thick gauge conductor and save yourself quite a bit of dough. Also, I would skip the rhodium plating, it can really make it bright and/or grainy sounding and takes away some of that gold euphoric sound.

You will be able to make a pretty darn nice sounding cable but it takes alot of trial and error to get it sounding exceptional. Good luck and make sure and let us know how it turns out!

Wow Gents, Thanks so much for you input! I am very new to Audiogon and feel quite blessed to have such great advise just for the asking. I will do some archiving and see weather or not I should even attempt this. It may be more involved than I had anticipated but at least I will know more than I did before! If anyone else has opinions or options, let it roll!
Since you are a Jewler you have access to some decent wire to start out with. A few years back when I first started working with gold I started out using 10K, 14K etc. Try using from 22 awg to 28 awg and you'll be able to build a decent sounding cable. Hope this helps you on your quest!

And in case you didn't know, Johngp happens to be John Prator from KCI. Given that he also makes fantastic cables, you should definitely heed his advice!

You are on the right track, I have pure gold interconnects and they are fantastically musical and detailed. I think the Gabriel Golds use an alloy, not pure gold. The ones I know that use pure gold are the Jade, KCI and Antipodes (which are what I use). They all share similar sound qualities.
This is fantastic response folks. I am curious though, as to what differences in sound I should expect to be able to hear when I finish making them? The alterations I have done to the system as of late have had such an amazing difference. Such as a veil being lifted from a work of art. I will say that what I am hoping for would be just as emphatic claity change although I don't know what form that change will take. Fill me in? BTW Just bought the metal two days ago,,, strangely, at about 6.5 cents on the dollar, but enough metal to wire several systems. I will need to talk more with johngp about plugs at some point. I believe he must be similar to connects what SR Vaughn is to a Stratacaster.
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Keep us posted on how your project goes. You have some excellent advice here and Steve is right on the money!

Hi John-
Steve from Gabriel Gold here.

Just got an e-mail from a guy who says we should make a cable together and call it the GKR (Gabriel's KOOL Ride)

Thought you might get a kick out of it.

Hi Steve,

Ha ha, that's good! Shoot, it'd probably sell like hot cakes! Let me say Steve that you make one helluva cable/s, darn it would you please stop!! lol.

Best to you,
link to a chart electrical conductivity of metals:
"BTW Just bought the metal two days ago,,, strangely, at about 6.5 cents on the dollar, but enough metal to wire several systems."

I just caught this, am I reading this correctly in that you paid around $59.00 per ounce??? If so I'd like to buy 100 ozs please!! ;)

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Mundorf silver/gold wire is also available for DIY. Very easy to work with as its already insulated.
Gents, I got Really lucky and was in a position to completely buy someone out from under everything they had. If I could do that every day I would be buying Silkworm instead of making my own! I made a stupid sick offer and they said "Duhhhh ok"Even after an appraisal.
SOOOO my Mac mx130 proc. has no volume control anymore and the vol. light has gone out. I was told to try unplugging it for a min. and plug it back up. Trying it again. If that doesn't work I'm certain it is due to bad gold buying karma.
Hey Steve, I will be first poring ingots about a foot long, annealing between every step of the way.
Then running through a large mill to the nearest of about 24-28g wire instead of my initial thought of 12g.
I will do that until I can come up with a meter in length per wire.
Then manually pulling the wire though a gage plate for uniformity. Then high polishing.
I had thought about Rhodium plating everything {rhodium being platinum in liquid plating solution] I thought it might help produce a faster low end.
I actually don't know weather my instincts are right about this at all. Never having tried it. So I don't know what results will come it all in sonic form.
What is the "Skin effect"?you spoke of? And Pardon my ignorance but what does dielectric mean? Is that the sheath that would hold the wire? Is it part of the connection socket? you went over my head there as most of this is but I'm having so much fun learning and experimenting with the sound.