Copper free Strerling Silver

Hi there, I saw a request for on Copper free Strerling
Silver that she assumed was used by one of the most popular high end
jewelry retailers. There is Silver alloy That doesn’t contain copper
and is pretty tarnish resistant. It is sold by Refineing One in Rhode
Island , I think the name is Sterelite (or something like that).
Problem with the alloy is is is softer than sterling, doesn’t solder,
or plate well. I think they use some zinc alloy in it.

At any rate, That “High End Retailer” doesn’t specifically use this
alloy, they like the standard sterling alloy. It tarnishes like any
other article made of streling, in the deign and development
process of their jewerly articles they take great pains to make
product that can be cleaned with their littel blue buffing cloths,
and you can bring the item back at any time to get it professionally
cleaned at their stores. This info is for Dede, she requested the
info back in May of this year… Sincereley, Wayne C

Sterling silver is not a measured like gold alloys. 18k gold can
have any variety of components in addition to the .750 gold. The
other .250 does not matter and it is still 18k.

Sterling silver, by definition, is .925 silver and .075 copper. No
more, no less, nothing else. Alan

Revere Academy of Jewelry Arts, Inc. 760 Market Street Suite 900 San
Francisco, California 94102 USA tel: 415-391-4179 fax: 415-391-7570

 Sterling silver, by definition, is .925 silver and .075 copper. 
 No more, no less, nothing else. 

Bravo Alan! Thank You! !! Since that last debate about Sterling back
in March & April of this year on Orchid, I have been frustrated by
the posts regarding Sterling being able to be comprised of alloy’s
or amounts other than those you’ve described above. I’m pleased that
another jeweler had clearly outlined the specific alloy

Very Best Regards
Sharon Scalise

Dear Alan, It may be that sterling is arbiitrarily confined to silver
with copper, but how then would you stretch that to include anything
that is marked .925 ? I really don’t think that this would be
legally defensible. The silver that is coming out of India is
certainly other than sterling in the literal sense because it has
altogether different working properties compared to the sterling
that we get from American sources. It also has the strange property
of exuding a whitish efflorescence when left for a period of time in
the ultrasonic. I remember once reading that much of the Indian
silver is actually higher in silver content. This would account for
the fact that it is much more pliable and malleable. Personally I
don’t care much one way or the other. If the medium that I use has
nice working and wearing qualities I will use it. On the other hand,
when you are talking about auriferous alloys, the ratio of precious
metal to alloy is important. Sterling may be an antiquated term that
is pedantic and unnecessary. Ron at Mills Gem, Los Osos, Ca.

 Sterling silver, by definition, is .925 silver and .075 copper. No
more, no less, nothing else. 

I have to respect your knowledge which is certainly superior to mine,
but I was under the impression that as long as the .925 portion was
Silver it does not matter what the .075 part is. I think Rio (and
others) allude to this with their solder filled sterling wire, the
outer part is fine silver, with a very small part of solder in the
center, since the silver comes to .925 they can sell it as Sterling.
Also the germanium (I think) Sterling that is billed as
(somewhat)tarnish free and has Germanium instead of copper.

Please let me know if they are using some loophole and if I would be
wrong in selling items made from the solder filled wire as Sterling.


Page 8, section 23.6 of the Jewelers of America Guide for the
Jewelry Industry - “It can only be marked or described as silver,
solid silver, sterling silver, or sterling if it is at least
925/1000ths pure silver.”

NO other metals are specified to make up the diference! No other
metals are mentioned as the ONLY one(s) you are allowed to alloy
into “sterling silver”. The way I read this, you can use whatever
trips your trigger to make up the 75/1000 difference - at least in
this country, and using the FTC “guidelines”.

That’s two places - in print - by the powers that be (FTC) and the
self regulating group (JA) that represents a majority of
manufacturers, wholesalers, and retailers… pretty good evidence
that you are acting in good faith, should the item assay at 925,
and anyone bothers to take you to court…