Jewelry that is received by Cash for Gold is first subjected to a state-of-the art electronic testing device. An alligator clip attaches the metal to the small device. After a few drops of test solution are placed on the test area, the machine quickly and accurately provides the gold quality (measured in karats) on its digital display screen.
In the event that the quality of the gold measured by the electronic tester differs from the quality of the gold as reported by the customer who sent it in (we will explore the danger of trusting engravings in a future posting), the piece will then undergo a second test—the scratch test. The scratch method is the oldest method used in the jewelry industry, and you may have seen it performed by a jeweler or pawn shop operator.
Scratch testing involves the use of needles verified as having certain levels of gold and low-grade acid solutions corresponding to each karat level. By treating the pieces with acid and comparing scratches from the needles, the tester can confirm what kind of gold is contained in the piece.
If both the electronic testing and scratch methods do not confirm clear results, pieces are subjected to an X-ray fluorescence scan. The machine used for this test is an incredibly powerful and remarkably expensive state-of-the-art device capable of providing detailed analysis by measuring the intensity of the generated gold X-rays by wavelength dispersion analysis.
When testing is complete, a full report indicates the percentages of gold content as well as other alloying metals such as copper, silver, zinc, etc. This method is remarkably accurate.
For more information about our process call 603-898-2580
or come by one of our locations.