Filled gold and gold-plated jewelry: what is the difference ?
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The golden chain is a sign of credibility and success. There is nothing more satisfying than turning your head on the street with brand new golden chess pieces.
The golden chain is a symbol of credibility and success. There is nothing more satisfying than turning your head on the street with brand new golden chess pieces. The problem is that pure gold is expensive. Like most precious metals and gems, the only real reason for its high value is due to the pricing of the gold market. You only need to spend a small part of the cost, you can get exactly the same appearance as pure gold parts. Jewelers achieve this goal by filling and gilding. These are similar processes, but before picking up your next accessory, it is important to have many differences. So what is the difference between the two? This is all you need to know.
What is filler gold?
This is a process that originated in the United States, although it has become popular overseas. This is a way to make a piece of gold jewelry look without spending money. When making gold-filled objects, the gold is crimped onto a base metal called jeweler’s brass. This is a high-quality metal that is extremely wear-resistant. Use high pressure and high temperature to cover the top of the brass with gold to provide a real gold appearance. Despite the name, the golden filling is only placed on the top of the part to give it an iconic appearance. It is not actually full of gold. The process is complicated, which explains why it is difficult to find jewelry full of gold compared to gold-plated jewelry. According to the law, items full of gold must contain at least 5% (weight) or 1/20 (weight) of gold. Therefore, if you see a necklace described as 12k gold, it means it is 12/20 gold.
What is gilding ?
Just like filled gold, gold plating is a substitute for pure gold. This is a common practice in jewelry manufacturing because it is easy to produce and looks authentic. Gold plating uses a process called electroplating, in which the base metal is cleaned with an industrial strength disinfectant to ensure proper bonding. Then, a thin layer of nickel is placed on the base metal, which helps to ensure that the gold does not react negatively with the base metal. Base metals can be made of various materials. Silver and copper are common examples. However, stainless steel is of high quality, so parts that use it as a base material tend to last longer and have a more realistic feel. This round-cut diamond tennis bracelet is a good example of a sturdy single product. Its appearance is only pure gold at a fraction of the price.
Finally, the covered metal is immersed in the molten gold solution and electrically combined to form a finished product. The thickness of the gold plating is determined in microns or microns. Gold plating is often much thinner than filled gold. Generally, it accounts for about 0.05% of the total product weight. However, these are very cheap options and look as good or even better than their pure alternatives.
Is real gold used for gold charging and plating?
The biggest advantage of these two options is that they use real gold in production. The only difference is that they are not made entirely of gold. However, since both are composed of pure gold on the surface, the difference cannot be distinguished with the naked eye. These are affordable alternatives, as opposed to pure gold metals, which are more easily available to commercial consumers. They look and feel like the real thing, so there really is no reason not to choose a cheaper option.
Most jewelry will have a mark that can help you determine how the piece was made. If the part is marked as GP, it means it is gold plated. Subsequently, GFmeans' stamps were covered with gold. There are variants of these markings, such as HGP, which means a heavily gilded piece. This only means that the gold layer is thicker than a typical gold-plated block. However, if your necklace is not marked, or you just want to be sure, you need professional help. The most basic and conventional method for jewelers is to conduct an acid test. In this practice, a small drop of acid is placed on the jewelry. If the acid dissolves, it means that the part is electroplated because the surface is porous enough to allow the acid to penetrate the base metal. If filled, the acid will not dissolve, but will remain on the surface. This test can only be performed by professionals, so please do not try it yourself.
Can You Tell The Difference Between Gold Filling And Plating ?
Another method is through electronic testing. With this, professional jewelers will use a special device to reveal the thickness of the gold alloy used in the accessory. Based on the thickness, the jeweler can determine whether to use filling or plating. Based on all of this, it is important to realize that you cannot tell the difference between pure gold, filled gold, and gilded with the naked eye. They need to observe microscopic marks or professional assistance.
Which is better: filled with gold or gold plated ?
Both filling and plating are cheap alternatives to buying pure gold, and they are very useful for expanding your chain and ring collection. Although the filler is indeed more resistant to discoloration due to the jeweler’s brass as the base metal, the life of the gold-plated parts is the same. For gold plating, it is important to keep it away from oils and chemicals, such as chlorine. You also need to use mild soap to clean it often. This will extend the life expectancy of your favorite accessories with minimal effort. Since gold plating is very similar to gold plating, there is not much reason not to choose a cheaper option. However, although gold plating is cheaper, as long as the base metal used is strong and durable, the quality will not decrease. The quality of silver and stainless steel is particularly high, which can make your gold-plated parts look the same as they were purchased.
Any alternative to real gold will be a better choice because you can save money without sacrificing the appearance of the chain. Filling gold and electroplating are two modes of producing gold jewelry at a lower cost. Although the filling is durable, plated parts are more cost-effective and can last a long time with little maintenance. Since the only way to tell the difference between the two is with professional assistance, it is worth considering a cheaper option. In any case, these two options are perfect for putting some timeless shining trinkets on your wardrobe.