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Friday, March 12, 2010

Today's WORD-A-DAY: GOLD TESTING (WITH ACID)


Oftentimes, a piece of gold jewelry - and especially antique jewelry - is unmarked, and has to be tested to determine the karat value. This is done by scratching an edge of the piece of jewelry on a "touchstone" and then dropping a single drop of gold testing acid on the gold scratch mark. If the gold scratch mark disappears under the drop of acid, the karat value is less than that marked on the acid bottle ... or it's not gold at all. If the gold mark remains, it is real gold, and at least the karat value it was tested for (it may even be higher).

2 comments:

Gypsy Trading Company said...

Interesting. I need to pick up a few of these tools of the trade. I get tired of taking my stuff down to the local jeweler, and not knowing if he is honest or not. :) Thank you for a great post!

Erica said...

Gotta be really careful with these acids.