There are a lot of gold buyers out there; some advertise that they will buy your gold in any condition, meaning they aren’t only looking for the expensive bullion bars and coins, but that they will buy gold jewellery whether it’s new, old or damaged. You might have heard the term “scrap-gold” being thrown around and wonder what that means.
There is a finite amount of gold in the world. It cannot be synthesized or replaced because of its unique properties so it is good to know that it can be recycled. This means your broken gold jewellery that you have no more use for is very important in the gold industry.
By definition, scrap gold is any product made from gold that is recyclable. It could be damaged jewellery like gold necklaces missing their clasps or it could be those single earrings missing their spare. Scrap gold also includes, gold used in dental fillings, electronic equipment, etc. People find scrap gold in the most unlikely places. If they don’t chance upon it at a yard sale or sweeping their local beaches with metal detectors to find jewellery buried in the sand. People lose all sorts of things in the sand. And then there are those people who accidentally lose their gold down drain pipes. You can always find gold buyers who will buy broken, damaged, ugly jewellery entangled jewellery fished out of drain pipes.
However, there are better places to find scrap gold than the drain. Look for gold jewellery buried at the bottom of your jewellery drawers or brave the attic spiders and find that box of “knick-knacks” containing old worn-out broaches you dead Aunt Mabel left you.
Most gold jewellery will have hallmarks like 10Karat, 14Karat, 18K and 22K and 24k. Sometimes gold jewellery might look like gold but turn out to be rolled gold or gold plating. For instance, if you see a hallmark with 1/20 G.F then you should know it’s for gold-filled jewellery. Most costume jewellery is gold-filled. It’s isn’t solid gold. With that said, don’t be in a rush to throw it away, a lot of Victorian era jewellery is gold filled. It might be valuable when sold to jewellery collectors looking for period pieces. Another common hallmark is R.G.P preceded by a karat number like 14K. R.G.P stands for Rolled Gold Plate. Gold plated jewellery pieces cannot be recycled.
Sometimes, you may come across a piece of jewellery that isn’t hallmarked making it hard for you to tell if it’s real gold. There are tests that you can carry out in your own home.
Get the strongest magnet you can find. A rare-earth magnet is the best if you can find it
Unmarked gold jewelry, is it solid gold?
Sometimes you have a piece of old or broken jewelry and you don’t know if it is solid gold. There are several tests you can do at home to determine if you have solid gold or not: The first test should be with the strongest magnet you can find in the house. A rare earth magnet will do the trick. You only need to run it over the jewellery piece and see if the item will stick to the magnet. Gold is not magnetic, so if your jewellery piece gets picked up by the then there is no gold in the jewellery.
The other method is to use an acid test. Rub the gold piece on a touchstone until the jewellery piece leaves a mark on the touch stone. Get a solution of nitric acid and hydrochloric acid, and place a drop of it on the mark left by the metal on the touchstone. The acidic solution will react with the gold differently depending on the karat of the gold rubbed on the touch stone.
You can get an XRF Analysis performed by a professional. This is a non-destructive test that measures the amount of gold in piece of jewellery. This is an effective method and it also happens to be the most expensive method but one that is popular amongst professionals in the precious metal market.
The next thing you need to do is to separate your gold jewellery by karat. If you plan to sell gold jewellery that is old and broken on a regular basis, you might want to invest in a high quality scale to get a more accurate reading. Gold is measured in troy ounces which is equal to 31.1grams.
What is your gold worth?
The price of gold (known as the spot-price) fluctuates every couple of seconds. The money that a gold buyer will pay for your gold depends on a number of conditions. As a rule of thumb, you can expect a reputable gold buyer to pay 80% of the value of your gold.
Where do I sell my scrap gold?
Finding a reputable gold dealer to sell gold jewellery to can be challenging. If you live in a big city, there’s probably a hundred or so of them. This makes it easier for you to get competing quotes. There’s also the internet. A lot of gold buyers advertise online and in newspapers so, when you are ready to sell gold jewellery, there’ll always be a dealer willing to buy.