“14k HGE” on a ring means the ring comprises 14-karat gold in “heavy gold electroplate,” which means the gold is not pure or solid gold but rather a coating for another metal. This coating of gold is usually between 7 and 100 millionths of an inch thick. Electronic testing can be used to determine the purity of gold that is not marked with HGE.
The layer of gold electroplate is typically 10 millionths of an inch thick, and it fades off quickly. Once the base metal is revealed, this sort of jewellery seems tarnished. Heavy gold electroplate reaches a maximum thickness of 100 millionths of an inch on top of base metal, according to Hannon Jewelers.
According to MintProducts, electroplated gold rings aren’t worth anything to scrap metal buyers. Rings that are stamped “gold plated” or “gold filled” are the same as those that are electroplated with heavy gold.
Electroplating is a method of coating metals with a metal solution that covers the core object. The covering metal slips out of solution and gathers around the electrolyzed core when the core metal is subjected to an electrical current. The gold covering thickens the longer the core metal is immersed in a bath of gold ions.
Read more: Silesia China Patterns: What Are They?