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21.11.2012

I am often asked about the difference between the different qualities of gold and which is my preference in the Masonic Rings that I sell.

It is probably easiest to start out with an explanation of the difference.

24K gold is the purest and is normally what I would refer to as “investment gold”. Typically 24K gold is not ideal for jewelry because it is too soft; therefore it damages easily and would be considered by many as too heavy to wear for jewelry.
22KT gold is used by dentists as it is easy shape and fit, but a small addition of an alloy makes it much harder wearing, but no so hard that it wears down the opposing teeth.
As you continue to reduce the amount of gold in your piece of jewelry, other alloys are mixed with the gold prior to the gold being poured into the mold. Most men’s or women’s rings are made of 14K or 10K gold. Some are made of 9K as they are hard-wearing and fine for mass-market jewelry.
Silver is usually the preferred metal to “dilute” gold with as it’s also a precious metal and is relatively cheap, and nickel is even cheaper but can provoke allergic reactions. Platinum and palladium is increasingly used but it’s harder to work with and is actually more expensive than the gold it replaces.
Lesser grades of gold such as  9K tends to shy away from using anything of value to form an alloy and may be mixed with brass, copper, tin, zinc, iron, aluminum or even with other cheaper alloys. Often these cheaper metals are added to finer quality jewelry in order to achieve a particular color. Silver and bismuth, for example, gives “black” gold.

Thus explains the difference between the different qualities of gold and provides an explanation when you hear that 10K gold is more durable and harder than a 14K gold ring. The 10K gold ring is diluted with other alloys that are stronger, harder and more durable; making the ring more resistant to scratching, denting, bending etc.

When I am asked by my customers which quality I recommend, I ask two questions.

First of all, if you are going to be wearing the ring on a daily basis; what is your profession? If you are a person that tends to work with their hands out in the elements or if the ring is going to be exposed to harsh chemicals etc; I would recommend a 10K ring. If you are a “paper shuffler or desk jockey” you have the choice because a 14K gold ring will withstand the wear.

The next question that I ask is: Do you have budget constraints? Of course we all do,but don’t break the bank just to have a 14K ring. A 14K Masonic Ring or other fraternal ring is going to appear a little more yellow because of the color of the gold but most people that are going to see your ring probably are not going to be able to see the difference if you keep your ring clean and polished.

I hope that I have been able to answer your questions and hope that when you are in the market for a quality Masonic ring or other Fraternal rings such as a Knights of Columbus Ring or Eastern Star Ring, you keep www.foxjewelry.net in mind when making your selection. If you have additional questions, please feel free to email me at: mfox@cableone.net or call me at 712-239-6155.



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