A Quick Guide You Can Use To Determine Real Gold From Fake In Your Jewelry Box

Posted on: 25 August 2016

Most people run into hard times at some point and need a little fast cash, and getting rid of some of the scrap gold pieces in your jewelry box is an easy way to do just that. The only problem is, if you are like a lot of people, you have a lot of items in your jewelry collection which you have no idea whether they are actually real gold or not. Before you pack up everything questionable and take it to a gold buyer to see if they can help you sort the real gold from the fake, check out this simple guide to help you out. 

Look for stamps and markings. 

In almost every case, real gold will have a stamp somewhere on it, even if the jewelry piece is tiny, which tells what karat the gold is or even who is the designer. On earrings, look for a stamp on the fastener. On necklaces and bracelets, look for a marking around the clasp, often times on a small tab simply connected to the chain. Rings often have a stamp on the inside. The exceptions to this rule are with antique or vintage gold pieces, which were not always marked during fabrication. 

See if the jewelry piece has magnetic qualities. 

As a general rule, true gold should not be magnetic. Therefore, if you use a magnet to pick up a piece of jewelry and it sticks, it is likely just metal with a gold or gold-toned coating. Gold can become magnetized if it is in close proximity to a magnet for a few minutes, but this will be a weak magnetization. While this test alone is not usually a sole determining factor in whether you have real gold or not, it is good to use in combination with other techniques. 

Scratch the gold piece against a piece of porcelain. 

the scratch test can help you determine if a piece is actually gold, but may also leave a small marking on the jewelry piece, so this test may not always be ideal. Rub an inconspicuous area cross the rough side of a porcelain plate. If you see only a golden or yellow marking, the piece is likely pure gold. On the other hand, if the marking left behind has traces of black, brown, or grey, you are probably testing a piece which has an inner material of aluminum or zinc. 

For more information, contact local professionals like Maine Pawn Shop.