The different types of gold and their alloys

A lot of our customers come in to sell gold without a fair idea of how much their gold is worth. While we provide a fair assessment before we offer you a price, we believe that each of our customers should be aware of the value of the gold they hold in their hands.

We did a post on the karat value of gold the last time, and this time we thought we could talk about the differences between the different types of gold. Gold varies mainly in colour and karat value, and different metals are alloyed with gold to bring in the desired hardness and colour.

What is pure gold

Pure gold is 24 karats and is 99.9% pure. While it is the purest form available, it is hardly good enough to be moulded into different shapes to be crafted into jewelry. It is far too soft, which is why it has to be alloyed with different metals, before beautiful designs can be crafted out of it.

Here is a chart that tells you the amount of alloy in different karats of gold.

  • 18 karat gold constitutes 25% alloy and 75% pure gold.
  • 14 karat gold constitutes 41.67% alloy and 58.33% pure gold.
  • 10 karat gold constitutes 58.33% alloy and 41.67% pure gold.

What gives gold jewelry its colour?

Two types of gold are used frequently to make jewelry – yellow and white. Jewelers alloy different metals with pure gold to achieve various hues of gold.

  • Copper and zinc are alloyed with pure gold to get the yellow color
  • Silver, nickel and palladium are alloyed with pure gold for a white hue

Other colors that gold is available in

Rose gold has caught the fancy of people the world over, and many jewelers are crafting jewelry that is a tad pink in colour. This colour is achieved when copper is alloyed with pure gold.

If your jewelry has a green hue, it would be an alloy of silver and pure gold.

Some things to know about white and yellow gold

  • While gold is an alloy of pure gold with white metals. The value of gold remains the same even when the colour changes.
  • White gold is the preferred base for diamond jewelry. The white colour sets off the brilliance of diamond, while yellow gold lends a yellowish tint to the gem stone.
  • While the brilliance of both white and yellow gold is the same, white gold is generally more expensive, since it requires more processing.

Tell us what colour you like your jewelry to be? Would you wear a bracelet in rose gold? Tell us what colour your jewelry is, and do write in to us if you have queries regarding the value of your jewelry.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *