Goldplating standards - Gilding, Gold plating & plating units

Hey Guys!

I can see that there are two types of electrolytic gold deposition: gilding and gold plating.

The most jewelry in the industry, are they gilded or gold plated with thicker deposits?

Obviously there are a diifference from whom you buy from, and price and quality goes hand in hand… Pay nothing and get a steel pendant with a plating that wears off after couple of times bathing with it!

However, Is there a benchmark for “good” goldplated jewelry in how big the gold deposit should be when you goldplate on silver jewelry ? “Quality” gold plated jewelry so to say that you can sell to the customer with good conscious?

Gold plating - Whilst gold plating involves depositing thicker layers of gold (up to approx. 8 µm),

Gilding - Results in a deposit of only a very thin layer of gold (max. 0.1 µm).

I also read that the amount of gold deposited is sometimes indicated not according to the thickness of the plating (in microns – µm) but by weight according to the amount of gold per kg of work, where the unit of measurement used is the millieme: 1 millieme = 1/1000 = 1 g fine gold per 1 kg item plated.

There are also standard terms for three plating weights

  • 10/000 = American doublé
  • 25/000 = Charnier
  • 50/000 = Unio

Take for instance that the classic American Doublé with 10 Milliém guaranteed gold plating is not recognized in Switzerland as such. There, the only accepted designation by law is “Plaqué”, which for gold-plating must have a layer thickness of at least 5 Microns. However Elsewhere in Europe The american Double is accepted.

So basically i just wanna know what a quality standard of gold plated jewelry is a good starting point, if one were to begin plating.

Best regards William

Think i found what i were looking for online if anyone were interested:

Generally, the thicker the gold plating the better the wearability. We recommend that you choose the thickest gold plating you can afford. Keep in mind your market niche and the way your jewelry is being advertised when choosing your gold thickness.

As a guideline, we recommend these minimum thicknesses for the following items:

  • earrings and pins–20 millionths (0.5 micron)
  • pendants and necklaces–40 millionths (1 micron)
  • rings and bracelets–120 millionths (3 microns)

The following information is from the Code of Federal Regulations, Title 16, Commercial Practices Part 23.

GOLD FLASH OR GOLD WASH : Electroplating of gold thickness of less than 7 millionths of an inch.

GOLD ELECTROPLATE : Electroplating of gold a minimum thickness of 7 millionths of an inch. Can also be marked G.E.P.

GOLD PLATE : A gold coating, deposited by any means, a minimum thickness of 20 millionths of an inch. Can also be marked G.P.

HEAVY GOLD ELECTROPLATE : Electroplating of gold a minimum thickness of 100 millionths of and inch (2.5 microns).

VERMEIL (pronounced VER-MAY) : Sterling silver electroplated with gold a minimum thickness of 100 millionths of an inch (2.5 microns).