Goldfinger Wedding Rings
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Learn about Metals

The first rule for the Ladies Wedding Band is to choose the same carat of gold (or grade of Platinum or Palladium) as your engagement ring. This way the metals will match in both colour and hardness; the hardness is an important factor as putting a harder metal against your engagement ring may cause increased wear which can result in expensive repair work.

Gold comes in several colours the norm being Yellow Gold, White Gold or Rose Gold but other colours are possible, purple, green and blue.

Most people refer to Gold as 9, 14, 18 or 22 carat, however, this is an old terminology when pure or fine gold was 24 carat which is a proportion or in other words gold was calculated on a basis of 24 parts (for example 18 carat is 18 parts gold and 6 parts other metals) the metals or alloys added to gold will dictate the colour.

In 1976 this was revised and all new hallmarks are stamped parts of 1,000, 18 carat no longer has 18 stamped in it but 750 (example 750 means 75% gold and 25% other metals) which is the same proportions as before but more accurate.

Other metals are added to gold to change the colour or to improve the malleability or hardness of the metal. As an example some brass alloys are mixed with the pure Gold to create Yellow Gold. Grade one 18ct White Gold is achieved by adding 25% Palladium, Rose (red) 18ct gold will have 20% copper and 5% Silver added, the unusual (like purple) can be achieved by adding a percentage of aluminium and blue by adding iron, these however are very rarely used as they are difficult to work with.

Palladium is part of the Platinum group of metals and when the ore (rock) is dug up it contains 6 metals in the Platinum family that have to be refined and separated. They are Platinum, Palladium, Rhodium, Ruthenium, Iridium and Osmium.

Palladium has all the characteristics of Platinum, hypoallergenic (950 Palladium contains no nickel) is a pure white metal and does not need plating (coating) to keep its colour, harder than Gold (hardness is measured by what is called Mohs scale of mineral hardness) 1 being the softest and 10 (Diamond) being the hardest. Gold is 2.5 to 3.5 dependent on the alloys mixed and Palladium and Platinum are 4 to 4.5. Palladium is approximately 25% lighter than Platinum which accounts for some of the price difference along with the rarity and the fact that city trading in Palladium is not so prevalent as in Platinum.

Our Palladium is 950 (95%) with 5% Ruthenium mix making it a grade 1 metal (not to be confused with a palladium and silver mix). A perfect choice for jewellery with the Platinum look without the price tag.

Platinum along with Palladium is the hardest of the precious metals, resistant to wear, never tarnishes and is not likely to cause an allergic reaction. (It also has magnetic properties which are said to be beneficial to joints).

The density of Platinum makes it heavier than Palladium, along with the scarcity of the metal, forms part of the reasons why Platinum has become the most popular metal in recent years and demand continues to increase. There is a slight colour difference between Platinum and Palladium which means if you have a Platinum engagement ring you should stick to the same to create that perfect look.

Sterling Silver is 92.5% pure silver, Silver is the softest of all the precious metals to bring the hardness up we add 7.5% of copper, it scores 2.5 on the Mohs hardness scale.