White gold or palladium rings, which to choose?

White gold or palladium rings, which to choose?

White gold or palladium rings? It is a question that comes naturally when looking for wedding rings.

I have been creating wedding rings for more than 15 years. With each couple wanting a custom-made creation, I notice that there are many misunderstandings, misinformation and even mystery about the technical data. So I understand why you would ask yourself the question.

But it’s not really rocket science, if you can clarify the words.

Are you looking for wedding rings made of a neutral and grey precious metal? Then, the article below will interest you.

On the other hand, if your search is not focused on a precious metal then go directly here: creation of custom-made wedding rings or creation of an engagement ring.

So let’s start by defining what white gold is:

What is the difference between white gold and grey gold?

There is no such thing! White gold is just a misleading term in commercial language… Both denominations refer to the same metal alloy (perhaps the term white gold is more « sexy » than grey gold).

Whether we are talking about white gold or grey gold, it is the same alloy obtained by combining gold with palladium. Fine gold (pure gold) will always be yellow.

18K gold is alloyed with other metals to modify its properties, such as hardness and/or colour – pale yellow, bronze, pink or red. (Black gold does not exist, it is a plating, or petrol…) but I advise you to read this article if you are interested in dark metal.

So, what does the K stand for in 24K, 18K, 14K, 9K gold? or 999, 750, 585, 375?

It defines the fineness of a precious metal. Fineness refers to the amount of fine metal contained in the alloy.

Example: the stamp 750 means that the alloy is of 750 per thousand. So, for 10 grams of 750 gold, you have 7.5 grams of fine gold in the alloy. The rest of the alloy can vary according to the properties that are sought for: colour, strength, ductility… To obtain white gold, palladium will be incorporated: 2.5gr for 10gr of alloy. To obtain a very white gold alloy, I tend to recommend 14K gold because there will be more palladium.

24K gold corresponds to 999/°°°, 18K to 750/°°°, 14K to 585/°°° and 9K to 375/°°°.

Do not confuse diamond carats (C) with gold carats (K). I will come back to diamond carats in a future article, but just know that the diamond carat is a measure of weight.

White gold is plated in 99% of cases.

To obtain a gold jewel with a very neutral and shiny appearance, white gold is plated with ruthenium (very white precious metal). It would be okay if you did not intend to wear your jewellery and thus did not subject it to wear and tear. The plating is of 15 microns (a big hair) and one day you may say: « My grey ring is turning yellow! ». Unfortunately, yes! The white gold below the plating is not as neutral as ruthenium, which appeared so white when the ring was new.

If you wish to choose white gold, I strongly advise against plating, but rather to have the specific colour of gold directly from the beginning, without « hiding » it with plating, since the colour below will reappear. Good white gold alloys are very close to being neutral. If you do not compare them with an even more neutral metal, they really look grey.

What is palladium ?

It is a precious metal, from Siberia, South Africa, the United States and Australia, from the platinum family. Its color is neutral grey, its density is very close to that of silver, which will make the jewel a little lighter than a gold jewel (nearly a third lighter).

It is worked in the same way as gold and the result will be the same. Without being a copy of white gold, it is a valuable metal, but palladium is about twice as inexpensive as gold.

Palladium alloys used in jewellery are 950°°° or 500°°°.

I have been advising palladium for more than 10 years for the jewellery creations, when the criteria are: precious, grey/white and durable.

There is article written especially about Palladium : click here 

here are some palladium creations:

Palladium-alloyed white gold has a slightly stronger hardness than palladium 950. However, there are ways to finish a palladium ring in order to obtain a very strong metal.

The advantages of choosing precious metals are personal. The material can be recycled to make new contemporary creations from the gold of old jewellery. We can even obtain white gold from yellow gold jewellery.

I deliberately did not mention platinum in this article because I will come back to it later check this article there!

All this information is given in order to allow you to make a better choice with the appropriate data. If you have any further questions, feel free to send me an email at cedric@cbijoux.com, I would be happy to help you.

And above all, don’t forget to like this article!!!!!

You are not looking for precious metal jewellery, your criteria are:

>The neutral grey appearance and durability – then steel, chromium-cobalt or titanium will be the best options for you.

>The aspect must be as dark as possible?? – it will be tantalum for you!

Would you like to know more about creating wedding rings? Then read the tips and instructions by cbijoux : here!

Cédric Chevalley Swiss designer has been creating contemporary jewellery since 2001, read more about him here.

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© 2015 Copie, reproduction interdite sans l’autorisation de cbijoux, Cédric Chevalley

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