|Brown & Sharpe (B & S Gauge)|
KARAT is a measure of fineness. Twenty-four (24) karat is fine gold. One karat equals 1/24 (.0417). Thus 14 karat gold is 14/24 fine gold and the balance (10/24) is alloy. The usual alloy metals are silver, copper and zinc. Nickel is used in white gold.
GOLD FILLED is made by joining a layer of gold alloy to a base metal alloy and then rolling or drawing to the thickness required.
ROLLED GOLD PLATE is the same as fold filled but of lower quality
GOLD ELECTROPLATE is usually made by electrolytically depositing fine gold on base metal
GOLD SOLDERS are usually 2 to 4 karats less than the gold on which they are used
STERLING SILVER is 925/1000 (92.5%) fine silver and 75/1000 (7.5%) copper.
COIN SILVER is 900/1000 (90%) fine silver and the balance copper. The same alloy is used for U.S. silver coins.
COMMERCIAL SILVER is a term applied to silver that is 999 fine or higher.
SILVER PLATED WARE is made by electroplating fine silver on a base metal alloy, usually nickel or Britannia metal, and sometimes brass or copper.
SHEFFIELD PLATE - genuine - was made by bonding sheet silver to copper, rollling and manufacturing into hollowware. Imitations are made by electroplating silver on copper.
NICKEL SILVER is a composition of nickel, copper and zinc. It does not contain silver.
GERMAN SILVER is the same as nickel silver. It does not contain silver.
BRITANNIA METAL is a composition of tin, copper and antimony.
PEWTER - genuine - was primarily a lead alloy. It is now made in a tin, copper, antimony composition similiar to Britannia metal.
HIGH BRASSES run from 55% copper in the extruded brass to 70% copper in the deep drawing brass-- the balance being zinc.
LOW BRASSES contain 80% or more copper, the balance being zinc
GRAIN originally meant the weight of a grain of wheat. It was later standardized for trading purposes but is little used now, most weighing being done in ounces and decimal parts, or in pennyweights and decimal parts.
PENNYWEIGHT is the twentieth part of a troy ounce. The name originally applied to the weight of an Anglo-Norman penny.
TROY OUNCE is about 10% heavier than the common avoirdupois ounce. There are 14.583 ounces troy in an avoirdupois pound.
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