Now that school is back in session after a summer vacation, tests become a major concern to students. But testing of precious metals should always be a concern to jewelers. With fake gold hitting pawnshops and counterfeit coins hitting the market, this might be a great time to refresh your memory about acid tests (a technique sometimes used to analyze the purity of gold and other metals) vs XRF analysis.
The traditional acid test for gold consists of placing a drop of several strong acids onto the metal’s surface and observing whether any reactions between the metal and the acid occurred. Most metals fizz or bubble, while precious metals remain unaffected. Although results are considered reliable for the most part, there are several reasons to stay away from the acid and choose a portable XRF analyzer instead.
X-ray fluorescence (XRF) analyzers enable pawnbrokers to find out in just a few seconds the exact precious metal content in jewelry, coins, and other valuable products without destroying them. Some XRF analyzers even alert you to the probability that an item is vermeil (gold-plated silver) or gold-plated copper, or contains steel, tungsten or any other non-gold substrate
Get an ‘A for Effort’ and download this infographic to find out the 8 Top Reasons Jewelers Should NOT Use Acid to Test Jewelry.