Do Watches Have Gold In Them?
Yes many watches do have gold in them! Gold has always been used inside some of the components that make up mechanical wrist watches. If you have come across this article, then you may be wondering what parts of a watch are gold. Gold can potentially be found in the case, the dial, the watch hands, hour markers, and even on some parts of the band. Even in digital watches, there may be small amounts of gold used in the circuit boards.
You also have to look at what type of watch you are dealing with, and also how old it is. These are also going to be factors that determine what parts of a watch are gold. Then, of course, let’s not forget that there are also gold and gold plated watches! We’ll start by talking about why gold is even used in watch parts to begin with.
Why Is Gold Found Inside Of Watches?
Aside from just increasing the aesthetic and luxury appeal, there are other reasons why gold may be found inside of watches. This is especially true in older, more historical timepieces.
Back in the 19th century, gold was used inside of watch bridges, gears and other internal mechanisms because of its resistance to corrosion. Gold is a pure metal that doesn’t have any iron in it. This is why it does not rust. The lack of iron makes gold the most non-reactive metal. Because it doesn’t react with oxygen, like other metals, it will not succumb to rust.
Gold As A Luxury Design Choice In Watches
So while there have been actual practical uses for gold in watches throughout history, gold still remains a symbol of elegance and status. The problem with gold, however, is that it is a very malleable metal. For this reason, it is oftentimes combined with other metals in order to give it the necessary levels of solidity. This leads to different “karats” of gold, which refers to the amount of the gold portion found in the watch.
How Much Gold Is In A Watch? Brief Explanation of “Karats” Of Gold
To find out how much gold is in a watch, you need to see how many Karats a watch is. Since “Karats” of gold describe the amount of gold vs other metals in a watch, then the different numbers are there to give you an approximation of that amount of gold.
Obviously, the higher the karat, the greater the gold concentration and the deeper the gold color tone. Additionally, the greater the gold content, the more expensive the watch will be.
24K is often described as the gold standard. If something is 24 karat gold, then that means that it is 100 percent pure gold. Once again though, because gold is a softer metal more prone to scratches, it is rare that you will ever find 24 karat gold watches or jewelry.
22 karat gold contains approximately 91.7% gold. The other 8% is made up of other metal alloys. This makes the gold hard enough to be used in jewelry. The more expensive gold pieces of jewelry you will find will be 22k gold pieces.
18K, 14K, And 12k
An item that is 18 karat gold contains 75% gold, and 25% other metal alloys. 14 karat is 58% gold, and 12 karat is 50% gold. When you start getting below 12K, then the jewelry may no longer be considered “fine jewelry”, as the gold content is less than 50%. This would mean the piece is made up of more other metal alloys than gold.
It is interesting to note that there is variation in the popularity of karats depending on what region of the world you are in. For example, 18K is most popular in Europe and Asia, while 14K is most popular in the US. In fact, 90% of all wedding band in the US are comprised of 14 karat gold.
Anyway, combining gold with other metals creates different gold alloys. Depending on what type of metal the gold is combined with, the resulting gold alloy will have a different name attached to it. Next we will be taking a look at some of the different types of gold watches you may have heard of and what that actually means.
Types Of Gold Watches
While there are many different combinations and variations of different metals mixed with gold, we will be looking at some of the more well known gold alloys.
Rose gold is a combination of gold and copper. It may also be referred to as pink gold, or red gold. The addition of the copper is what gives it the distinctive rosy hue. The amount of copper present is going to affect the intensity of the reddish color.
White gold refers to gold that is mixed with white metals such as palladium, silver, zinc, or nickel. By itself, white gold is usually quite dull in color. Most often this mixture is then coated with a rhodium plating in order to give it that lustrous shine.
Magic gold is a concoction of Swiss watchmaking company Hublot. This type of gold is a combination of gold and a ceramic alloy. This gives it the look of 18 karat gold, except it is much more scratch resistant.
Everose gold was created by Rolex. It is similar to rose gold, in that it contains copper in the mixture. Everose gold, however, adds a small amount of platinum to this mixture.
The addition of platinum allows a watch to retain its same rosy color, which would otherwise fade over long periods of time due to exposure to the elements.
So in conclusion, we can see that what parts of a watch are going to be gold is determined by what type of watch you are looking at. In the case of watches that are themselves made of gold, you will need to look at how many karats of gold that watch is made of. Additionally, you can also determine what metals the gold is mixed with by looking the names, such as: rose gold, white gold, etc.
I hope that you have enjoyed this article, and that it has been very informative. If you would like to learn about other topics concerning watches, then you can check out some of our other information articles here.