Q:

What do gold markings mean?

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Quick Answer

Though not required by law, most gold jewelry pieces carry a quality mark that denotes the proportion of pure gold each contains. The letter "K" in the mark stands for the word "karat," the unit used in the gold-content rating system.

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Full Answer

Pure gold is defined as being 24K, or 24 parts gold with no other metal added. As gold of this purity is too soft for jewelry applications, it is often mixed with base metals to make it harder and more durable. Most commonly available pieces range from 22K to 10K or a gold content of 92 percent to 42 percent.

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Related Questions

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    How can I clean tarnished gold?

    A:

    Clean tarnish from your pure gold jewelry by immersing the jewelry in warm water with a couple of drops of dish soap and rubbing gently with your fingers or a washcloth. Do not use this method for gold jewelry that incorporates crystals, gems or pearls. Cleaning your jewelry will take a few minutes, but allow the pieces to air dry overnight for best results.

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    How do you date gold?

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    What does 925 mean on gold?

    A:

    The number 925 stamped on a gold piece of jewelry usually means that the jewelry is not entirely gold; it is sterling silver that has been gold plated. The number normally indicates the purity of the silver used, not the quality of the gold.

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    What does a "925" stamp mean on gold?

    A:

    A "925" stamp on a piece of gold jewelry usually has no relationship with the gold but with the silver underneath. A "925" stamp on silver denotes a 925/1000 part purity, or a sample of silver that's 92.5 percent pure.

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