Precious Metals & Gems

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Jade is derived from a naturally occurring mineral called jadeite, which is collected in locations all over the world, from Alaska to Guatemala and Central Asia. Jadeite comes in several different colors and forms, and it is only known as jade when used as a gem for carving or jewelry.

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  • How Can You Buy Conflict-Free Diamonds?

    Q: How Can You Buy Conflict-Free Diamonds?

    A: In order to purchase conflict-free diamonds, a buyer should be knowledgeable about what constitutes non-conflict diamonds, ask questions about a stone's origin and request written proof of a stone's status. Utilizing a checklist of questions can aid in the process.
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  • How Can I Tell Real Turquoise From Fake?

    Q: How Can I Tell Real Turquoise From Fake?

    A: To determine whether or not turquoise is authentic, check for uniform color throughout the piece, opaqueness and low shine. Fake turquoise is often made from pale stones injected with dye, which appear overly shiny, clear and streaked, according to BJBead.com.
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  • What Does a Ruby Look Like?

    Q: What Does a Ruby Look Like?

    A: Rubies are bright red precious stones which can be anywhere from transparent to opaque. They are the red version of corundum. According to Minerals.net, rubies get a nine on the hardness scale.
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  • Where Can I Find the Price of Copper?

    Q: Where Can I Find the Price of Copper?

    A: As of January 2015, one place consumers can find the price of copper is NASDAQ, and another is Investment Mine. NASDAQ states that its quote is based on end-of-day commodity futures, and it is focused on high-grade copper. Consumers can also change the time frame reported to view past quotes.
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  • Is All Silver Considered Sterling?

    Q: Is All Silver Considered Sterling?

    A: A silver alloy is considered sterling silver if the alloy contains at least 92.5 percent silver but less than 99.9 percent silver, which is considered fine silver. Sterling silver contains a minimal amount of other metals that increase durability while maintaining the beauty and value of silver, according to Zales.
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  • Where Can I Sell My Used Gold Jewelry?

    Q: Where Can I Sell My Used Gold Jewelry?

    A: Gold jewelry can be sold to direct buyers, mail-away operations, pawnshops, gold parties and traditional jewelry stores. Businesses that are Better Business Bureau accredited are the safest type of business to sell to, according to ABC News.
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  • What Type of Diamond Cut Is the Most Expensive?

    Q: What Type of Diamond Cut Is the Most Expensive?

    A: Heart-cut diamonds are the most expensive style due to the cost and expertise required to manufacture diamonds in this shape. The process of cutting a diamond into a heart shape is difficult and demands a skilled diamond cutter. A heart-shaped diamond is usually larger than one carat because the cutting process is easier with a bigger diamond.
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  • What Is a Mystic Topaz?

    Q: What Is a Mystic Topaz?

    A: A mystic topaz is a chemically treated clear topaz with a shiny, multicolored luster that flashes blue, green, purple and pink. According to Gem Select, some retailers sell mystic topaz labelled as "fire topaz," "Alaska topaz" or "mystic fire topaz." It is inexpensive and durable but prone to cracking when hit with significant force.
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  • Where Does Jade Come From?

    Q: Where Does Jade Come From?

    A: Jade is derived from a naturally occurring mineral called jadeite, which is collected in locations all over the world, from Alaska to Guatemala and Central Asia. Jadeite comes in several different colors and forms, and it is only known as jade when used as a gem for carving or jewelry.
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  • Does Silver-Plated Jewelry Tarnish?

    Q: Does Silver-Plated Jewelry Tarnish?

    A: Since sterling silver is an alloy, it tarnishes when it comes into contact with sulfur particles, which are found in abundance in the air. For this reason, all sterling silver jewelry tarnishes, even silver-plated jewelry, according to Simply Sterling of Colorado. Lotions and perfumes may speed up the process.
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  • What Are Types of Gold?

    Q: What Are Types of Gold?

    A: The primary types of gold contain different purities, which are measured in karats. Gold overlay refers to items that are made from a non-gold metal that is permanently coated with gold. To be considered gold overlay, the gold weight must equal at least 10 percent of the total weight. Gold is available in yellow, white and rose colors, which are created by mixing it with other metals.
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  • Why Does Silver Turn Your Finger Green?

    Q: Why Does Silver Turn Your Finger Green?

    A: Silver may turn your finger green if the silver reacts to acids in the skin or other substances on the skin. This problem arises mostly with inexpensive jewelry, or silver-plated jewelry, as opposed to pure sterling.
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  • How Hard Is a Diamond?

    Q: How Hard Is a Diamond?

    A: Diamond is the hardest mineral on the Mohs scale of mineral hardness, with a rating of 10, and is four times harder than the next mineral on the chart, corundum, of which sapphire and ruby are varieties. The Mohs scale is the most common system used for this measurement. It is a relative scale, grading the comparative hardness of 10 common minerals and their resistance to scratching.
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  • Can You Break a Diamond?

    Q: Can You Break a Diamond?

    A: Yes, you can break a diamond. Hitting a diamond with a hard blow from a hammer, for instance, is liable to crack, split or outright shatter the diamond.
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  • What Is a Diamond's Streak?

    Q: What Is a Diamond's Streak?

    A: "Streak" is the word used to describe the color of a diamond when it is reduced to powder form. It has nothing do do with an actual streak.
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  • How Can One Tell If Something Is Real Gold or Gold Plate?

    Q: How Can One Tell If Something Is Real Gold or Gold Plate?

    A: The easiest way to tell if something is real gold or gold plate is by holding a magnet up to the piece and waiting for the metal inside the piece to attract to it. If the piece is gold-plated, it is instantly connected to the magnet. If the piece is solid gold, it does not connect.
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  • What Are Five Ways to Choose a Diamond and Determine Quality?

    Q: What Are Five Ways to Choose a Diamond and Determine Quality?

    A: Determining the quality of a diamond involves the consideration of its cut, clarity, color, carat size and certification. Certification through an accredited organization, such as the American Gem Society or the Gemological Institute of America, lets the buyer know that the diamond being purchased has the qualities that the seller claims that it has.
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  • What Is the Difference Between Platinum and Silver?

    Q: What Is the Difference Between Platinum and Silver?

    A: Platinum weighs more than silver and is much denser. Platinum also has a much whiter and shinier appearance, where as silver appears to have a duller gray appearance. Platinum is much more expensive than silver, because it is more difficult to extract it from the ground,
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  • Where Does Gold Come From?

    Q: Where Does Gold Come From?

    A: Gold comes from almost every continent, with China and Australia the largest producers as of 2015, according to Mining Technology. A team of Harvard scientists believes that gold is formed when two neutron stars collide, according to a report by USA Today.
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  • Why Is Gold so Valuable?

    Q: Why Is Gold so Valuable?

    A: The high value of gold is driven by three factors: its practical applications, the largely aesthetic desire people have for it and the perceived protection it grants investors as a hedge against currency fluctuations. According to Jerry Bowyer for Forbes magazine, the cash value of all the gold that has so far been extracted amounts to roughly $10 trillion.
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  • How Are Rubies Formed?

    Q: How Are Rubies Formed?

    A: According to the Encyclopaedia Britannica, rubies are formed when the mineral corundum is exposed to chromic oxide in metamorphic environments between 1148 to 1238 degrees Fahrenheit. There are also two prominent methods of making synthetic rubies in a laboratory. The flame-fusion method produces a gem with notable imperfections. The flux-growth method produces a synthetic ruby that is nearly indistinguishable from a real one.
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