MacRumors forum member RianFlynn has shared photos of a stainless steel Apple Watch with Milanese Loop with what he says is a thin coating of 24-karat gold that costs just $6. The finished product looks quite impressive, and the user has since launched a website called WatchPlate where he plans to accept Apple Watch gold plating orders for $399 with an estimated three-day turnaround. Most of the price is based on the time and labor involved. While we have not confirmed the authenticity of this service, gold plating the stainless steel Apple Watch is technically feasible.
The Time Preserve
Watch restoration specialist The Time Preserve recently announced that it is accepting gold plating orders for the stainless steel Apple Watch. The company, which has been restoring watches since 1995, uses custom-formulated gold electroplating for durability, and ensures that the 5 to 6 microns thick plating will not peel from daily wear. Prices range from $550 to $650, with cheaper prices for bands only, and the service has an estimated one-week turnaround.
Gold Spray Paint
YouTube creator Casey Neistat shared a video last week where he applied gold spray paint to his space gray aluminum Apple Watch Sport. Beyond the obvious fact that spray painting your Apple Watch probably isn't the wisest idea, given that the paint could easily chip or get stuck in the Digital Crown or other parts of the watch, the end result actually looks much like the Apple Watch Edition.
Of course, the thin gold plating is not the same as the 18-karat solid gold used on the Apple Watch Edition, but the difference is hard to tell visually and these services are available at a fraction of the price. Before placing an order, keep in mind that modifying your Apple Watch with gold plating may void your standard warranty or AppleCare protection plan for the device.