What Does 417 Gold Really Mean?: Your Questions Answered

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What comes to mind when jewelry is mentioned? Would it be diamonds? How about gold? Most of us prefer buying gold jewelries especially those who are into buying and reselling for profit.

There are different types of gold:

  • Yellow Gold
  • White Gold
  • Rose Gold
  • Green Gold
  • Black Hills Gold

Gold jewelry usually has markings on it. These markings tell us how much gold there is in a piece of jewelry.

They are made of numbers and sometimes they come with letters. The usual markings we can find in jewelries are 417 or 10K for a 10 karat gold piece of jewelry.

It is a simple karat mark. 417 gold means that the piece you have on hand has 41.7% gold and the rest is alloy.

Now let's explore and learn more about gold. Since a lot of jewelries come in gold, it is important for us to know how we would be sure that what we are getting is really gold. It is also important that we know how much gold we are getting.

All About Gold

Did you know that gold is soft?

In fact pure gold is very soft that it can be formed by just using the hands. It is the most flexible metal that an ounce of it can be spread into a 100 square feet sheet. Gold is used as a material in metalwork.

Gold can be mixed with other alloys to make it stronger and harder. It is not affected easily by exposure to water, air or any other substances that may cause it to rust or discolor. It is also used as a conductor of electricity.

Gold is measured by karats. When you go to a jewelry shop you will notice markings on every piece, which are indicators of how much karat of gold that piece has.

Usually you will find 750, 585 and 417 gold markings, which only mean that each piece is 75%, 58.5% and 41.7% gold and the rest of it is alloy. In a simpler term the 750 gold stands for 18 karat or 18K, 585 gold is 14 karat or 14K and the 417 gold is for 10 karat or 10K.

Understanding Markings on Gold Jewelries

When you buy pieces of jewelry and view them with a magnifying glass, you will notice some markings.

You will see these markings on the inside part of a ring, at the clasps of chains and bracelet and on the posts of earrings. These markings would signify the gold content of each piece.

These may not be 100% guarantee of the gold content as there are jewelries that are marked with fake markers while others, even though they do not have markings, are still made of high grade gold.

Here is a list of stamps that indicate the gold value of your jewelry and what they mean:

There is a plain stamp that indicates how many karats a piece is:

  • For plumb gold pieces you will see 14K P
  • For a 10 karat piece you will see either 10K or 417, which means the piece has 41.7% gold
  • For a 14 karat piece you will see either 14K or 585, which means the piece has 58.5% gold
  • For an 18 karat piece you will see either 18K or 750, which means the piece has 75% gold
  • For a 22 karat piece you will see either 22K or 917, which means the piece has 91.7% gold
  • For a 24 karat piece you will see either 24K or 999, which means the piece has 99.9% gold

There are also jewelries especially those that are a bit old that do not have markings. Here is a short list of the possible reasons why these pieces do not have markings but are still of good and high quality gold:

  • The markings could have been abraded.
  • The jewelry has been re-sized.
  • It has been custom made.
  • It was made by a common jeweler or homemade.

Markings on gold pieces are not a guaranty that they are really made with that gold content. The best and most reliable test for gold content and quality is through a metal tester using nitric acid. The other ways of knowing if it is really gold are:

  • Gold does not tarnish or discolor, so if a piece of jewelry is discolored it is not gold.
  • When comparing the weight of your gold jewelry to a piece that is similar in size, the gold piece should weigh more since gold is very dense.








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