Gold: The word itself sounds rich. We have been utilizing Gold for decorative and so many other uses almost since before written history. The Balkans were mining and shaping this wonderful metal 6,000 years ago. The Egyptians, Ancient Romans, Greeks and so on developed financial and commodity trading based on its value. Today the worlds markets set their standards of worth based specifically on Gold costs.
Because of the softness of pure (24k) Gold, it is usually alloyed with base metals for use in jewelry, Altering its hardness and ductility, Melting point, Color and other properties. Alloys with lower karatage, typically 18k, 14k or 10k, contain higher percentages of copper, or other base metals or silver or palladium in the alloy.
- James Dyegold.
Since ancient times the purity of gold has been defined by the term karat, which is 1/24 part of pure gold by weight. Pure gold is equivalent to 24k. Gold used in jewelry manufacturing is not for all intense and purpose "Pure Gold". It is an alloy in which of every 24 karats mass, 10, 14 or 18 karats are Gold. The remaining are other materials. Most Jewelry, industrial and medical grade gold items are not "Pure Gold". They are alloys with high gold content. How much of the mass of the material is actually pure Gold is called its "Fineness". Thus 10k gold is 10k fine. Same properties apply to 14k and 18k Gold.
|Karat Gold||Parts Gold||Percentage Gold||Normal European Stamping|
|10 KT||10 in 24||41.67%||416|
|14 KT||14 in 24||58.33%||583 or 585|
|18 KT||18 in 24||75%||750|
|24 KT||24 in 24||99.99%||999 or .99999|
Gold is used in jewelry manufacturing because of its pliability. Which means it is easily molded into hundreds of designs. It will not rust, tarnish or corrode. Gold jewelry recovered from ancient Egyptian tombs is in the same state as when placed there over 4000 years ago. This does not mean it is impervious to damage. Chlorine will ruin the color of gold so do not swim in chlorinated swimming pools or salt water. Regular upkeep is recommended, but not too often. Polishing gold wears it away.
Make sure to look for a 10k or 416 (for 10 karat jewelry). 14k or 585 (for 14 karat jewelry). 18k or 750 stamp (for 18 karat jewelry) on your jewelry. This will insure you get the highest quality gold products.