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FACTS ABOUT GOLD


Before Ordering Gold or Silver, Please Read


The following information is courtesy of Sun Fashion Designs®

    WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE
    BETWEEN THE VARIOUS "KARAT" RATINGS OF GOLD?


    Pure gold is 24K and is rarely used in jewelry because it is too soft. Gold is normally mixed with copper and silver for yellow gold; or nickel, zinc and copper for white gold. 10K gold is 42% gold and 58% alloy. 14K is 58% gold and 42% alloy. 18K is 75% gold and 25% alloy. Solid gold is NOT necessarily pure gold, but gold of whatever purity, throughout.

    THE "GOLD" STAMP

    In the past, all gold pieces carried a stamp indicating the karat value of the piece. Recently, this has been changing. To save time and money, manufacturers have taken to stamping pieces that have a large enough, design free area to carry a standard size stamp. Otherwise, they have been stamping the attachment, i.e. bezel or bale.


    WHAT DO THE TERMS GOLD FILLED, GOLD OVERLAY AND GOLD ELECTROPLATE MEAN?

    Gold filled is an overlay of 10K gold or better, bonded by means of heat and pressure to a base metal (usually brass). By Federal standards, the weight of the gold must be at least 1/20th of the total weight of the metal. If referred to as gold filled , the jewelry must be stamped with the weight and fineness of the gold. For example: 1/20 14K; or 14KGF. (If GF is used the weight is not required).

    Gold overlay is manufactured by the same method as gold filled, however, the weight of the gold can be less than 1/20th the weight of the metal. It can also be called gold plate, rolled gold plate and rolled gold. It must carry a quality stamp as required for gold filled; for example: 1/40 12K.

    Gold electroplate is gold that has been electrolytically deposited on a base metal. By Federal standards, in order to be called gold electroplate (or G.E.), the gold must be at least 7 mils (millionths of an inch) of an inch thick and of a fineness of 10K or better. The words goldtone and gold wash are Federally approved terms for items less than 7 mils, however, "layered in 14K gold" is commonly used. There is no Federal standard for the word "layered", so it can mean any thickness of gold, even as low as 1 mil.

    The words "Heavy Gold Electroplate" (HGE) can only be used if the thickness of the gold is 100 mils or more. There are 40 mils to a micron, and occasionally you will hear H.G.E. referred to as 2 1/2 microns of gold.


    ISN'T GOLD FILLED BETTER THAN GOLD ELECTROPLATE?

    Not necessarily. It depends on the thickness of the gold electroplate. Consider what happens when a chain is made of gold filled material. A length of brass wire, which has a thin layer of gold on the outside, is drawn, stretched, bent, stamped, polished, etc. Some areas end up with little or no gold, while other areas might have more than needed. Electroplating deposits the gold in a uniform manner on the surface of the metal. If the gold is applied heavy enough, the finished product is superior to gold filled.

    HOW CAN I DETERMINE THE THICKNES
    s OF THE GOLD?

    No one can tell the thickness of the gold just by looking at the piece. The most accurate method of measuring thickness is with special x-ray equipment, and even then the operator must know the exact alloy composition in order to get an accurate measurement.


    WHAT ABOUT GOLD ITEMS ON THE FOREMOST JEWELRY SITE?

    All gold jewelry at FOREMOST is 14K solid gold. Usually molded on one side and concave on the other, to make the piece larger for the weight and to make the piece "lie" better. Flat pieces may be etched on one or both sides. 3D pieces are marked as such. The theme carries through on both sides.


    VERMEIL?

    Vermeil jewelry is sterling silver overlaid with gold, very often 22K.

    WHY IS FOREMOST JEWELRY LESS EXPENSIVE THAN OTHER DEALERS?

    Low overhead and we are here to make a living, not a killing.


    *SHIPPING BULLETIN!
    Please Read


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