To discern a true gold jewel of the gold plated dc, the best solution is ink to bring it to your jeweler. However, some tips can help you evaluate the value of your jewel yourself.
After a little development, learn to recognize the real gold yourself!
What is a punch?
The official mark jewels are engraved with a stamp indicating the number of carats of the piece: 10k gold price, 14K, 18K, 22K and 24K. Gold exceeding 10k gold price is considered true, ie in 24 g of alloy there is 10 g of pure 10k gold price.
For white, yellow or pink gold:
An eagle or horse head indicates a title of 750/1000 18K, French legal title, it is called “massive” gold.
The inscriptions “750” or “0,750” appear mainly on watches.
“585” indicates 14K gold from foreign sources.
The master’s mark is struck in a diamond and often bears the initials of the jeweler.
Good to know: an owl or an owl indicates that the object has been checked, used or imported, under French legal title.
To each jewel its punch!
Each jewel has a different punch:
For rings, rings and signet rings: the title and master punches are minted and never cast, and are outside the ring. If your jewel has a punch inside the ring, it means that it is molded and not struck, so it is a false punch, the ring is not gold.
For bracelets, chains, gourmets and necklaces: the punches are on both ends when it is welded mesh, or on the two elements of the clasp.
For the medals and pendants: they are composed of the ring, the bail and the body of the medal. The bail bears the punches, it is a solid part of the medal. The ring may also include a punch but not necessarily.
For pocket and collar watches: these antique watches are made of many pieces that must each have a title punch if they are real gold.
For wristwatches: the punch must be inside or outside the bottom as well as on the middle part (on the side or between the handles).
As a general rule, each piece must be punched individually.
Gold plated: gold anyway
The gold plated good quality is equipped with a punch.
It is always a square punch, hollow, with a manufacturer’s mark.
The thickness of the plating can be mentioned in microns: 5 for medium quality, 10 or 20 for good quality, up to 40 microns for some wristwatches in particular.
We can also find the indications “G” or “GALV” indicating electroplating. We talk about galvanic gilding.
Good to know: old parts may have lost their punch, result of wear.
Warning! Counterfeits may also have a punch.
Your jewel is in permanent and direct contact with the skin.
Thus, the metal can move according to its nature: if discolored areas appear, and let them discern a metal of another color below, it is only gold plated.
A jewel in pure gold can be worn in the shower and to sleep.
This precious metal being difficult to alter, it will not fade.
Warning! Gold is however a soft metal. So avoid subjecting it to frequent rubbing when you do the dishes for example.
Although athletes routinely put their medals to the test with their teeth as a symbol of their victory, the bite test is not the most ideal because it damages the metal. In theory, the more pure gold is, the softer it is. So, biting in:
If there is a bite mark, it is either:
Gold-plated lead (lead is less hard than gold);
If there is no bite, your jewel is certainly not gold.