What Does “18k GE” Mean on a Ring?

A ring with the marking “18KGE” is electroplated with a thin layer of 18 carat gold. This electroplated layer is distinct from previous gold coatings in that the gold has been uniformly deposited electrolytically.

Federal regulations stipulate that gold electroplating must be at least seven millionths of an inch thick and at least 10K pure to be labelled as such. Generally, items that are thinner than this thickness are labelled “layered in 14K gold,” however gold tone and gold wash are officially recognised words. The letters “HGE” are stamped on items with a thickness of 100 millionths of an inch to indicate heavy gold electroplate.

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