Metals at a Glance

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Metals at Glance

MKM Jewelry has experience using a number of precious and semi-precious metals to create jewelry, statues, and art. Read on to get an overview of each metal we use and discover the best metal for you!

Eco Brass

Eco Brass is a lead free brass alloy that is suitable for jewelry. This particular Eco Brass alloy can be machined easily, has excellent forgeabilty, and is as strong as stainless steel — making it a great choice for custom jewelry manufacturing. Brass is not considered a precious metal. Eco Brass’s fluidity makes it an ideal choice for jewelry casting. Eco brass is specifically formulated to be more corrosion resistant than traditional brass alloys. Brass tarnishes easily, which can create beautiful patinas. However, maintaining its original metallic yellow hue will require regular cleaning and polishing.

Sterling Silver

Sterling silver is a silver alloy that’s 92.5% pure silver, and 7.5% other metals. Pure silver is often too soft to be used in functional objects, so other alloys, such as copper are added to give it strength while maintaining its ductile nature and beautiful coloring. Sterling silver is popular in the jewelry manufacturing process due to its hypoallergenic properties — although sterling silver that uses nickel as an alloy may irritate those with nickel sensitivities. Silver is a valuable precious metal, though less rare than gold and rhodium. Pure silver does not tarnish, but the alloys added to create sterling silver will cause it to tarnish over time. Sterling silver must be polished periodically to maintain its bright, shiny appearance.

Rhodium

Rhodium is the rarest and most valuable metal in the world, with a price six times that of gold. It is distinctive for its silver tone, and shiny reflective properties. Rhodium has a very high melting point, making it incredibly durable. It is also known for its resistance to corrosion. Rhodium plating is sometimes used in custom jewelry manufacturing for its lustrous mirror-like appearance, and to add durability to pieces made of softer precious metals, such as gold.

Yellow Gold

Gold has been one of the most valuable metals throughout history, and remains popular to this day. Gold is a soft metal; pure gold is pliable to the touch, leading many in the past to test its authenticity by biting it. The gold used in custom jewelry manufacturing is mixed with stronger alloys such as nickel or zinc to add surface strength. Lower karat gold has less gold in it, but is more durable than higher karat gold. Gold’s conductivity also makes it a great option for electronic manufacturing. Pure gold is hypoallergenic, but those with sensitive metal allergies may react to the alloys mixed into 14 and 18 karat gold.

Rose Gold

The beautiful blush tone of rose gold comes from adding copper alloys to gold. Rose gold was known as Russian Gold for a time, due to its rise of popularity in nineteenth century Russia. Gold jewelry is heirloom quality, maintaining value and luster for generations.

Learn More with MKM Jewelry

MKM Jewelry has spent decades perfecting our craft for custom jewelry and art manufacturing. Learn more about how we can use these metals to bring your pieces to life when you reach out to us today!

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