Our Precious Metals: Platinum and Gold

We exclusively use 5% Ruthenium Platinum or 18-karat Gold alloys

Most of our work is done in platinum – the only precious white metal. We also work with white, yellow, and rose gold. We do not use gold alloys lower than 18-karat (750 European).

Leon Mege Platinum bar illustrationPlatinum

One of the most desirable noble metals globally, platinum is the best choice for bespoke jewelry, especially engagement rings. Platinum has earned high marks from the Royal Society of Chemists for its unmatched properties, such as its strength, resilience, rarity, and value.

Platinum’s naturally white color, which does not corrode or darken, is responsible for its elevated status among jewelers and consumers. Platinum’s cool white sheen is perfect for accentuating the sparkle of diamonds. Platinum doesn’t cause any color reflections in the stone.

Platinum weight is not a factor for hand-forged earrings, necklaces, pendants, and bracelets. Skilled jewelers use thinner metal, smaller gauge wire, and various techniques like adjourning to turn platinum pieces that are light and airy. On the other hand, platinum’s high density is detrimental to pieces made by casting. CAD/CAM jewelry is chunky and heavy because casting very thin parts is not practical.

At Leon Mege, we only use platinum consisting of 95.5 parts pure platinum and 4.5 parts ruthenium. Platinum is the most ductile of all metals in its pure form; that’s why it needs to be cured with a tiny amount of ruthenium to improve its hardness and density.

Ruthenium is a platinum group metal. Ruthenium platinum is the only alloy suitable for hand forging. We do NOT use 10% iridium alloy, which is inferior to ruthenium and is mainly used for mass fabrication by casting.

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Platinum jewelry has a solid feel that is impossible to achieve with white gold. White gold was developed as a platinum substitute during WWII. It is a poor woman’s platinum.

Our platinum jewelry is marked with the Pt950 stamp according to FTC guidelines. For gold purity, Leon Mege jewelry is stamped 750, Au750, or 18K. 

Here are the ten reasons why platinum is better than white gold. Platinum is the original precious white metal. Platinum is easier to work with than gold. The cost of labor, which is the main part of the fabrication cost, is lower, making hand-forged platinum jewelry surprisingly affordable. 

 

leon mege yellow gold bars illustrationYellow gold

Fine jewelry is exclusively made of 18K gold. There are many shades of gold – yellow, green, pink (rose), and white. 

Every gold alloy we use is proprietary, field-tested, and guaranteed to satisfy strict quality requirements and FTC standards for jewelry metals. All Leon Mege gold alloys are guaranteed to pass the European Nickel Release test, which means that they will not cause skin allergies. 

In its natural color, gold has long been the traditional metal of choice for jewelry because it doesn’t rust, tarnish or corrode. At Leon Mege, we exclusively use 3N*yellow gold alloy manufactured in Italy. The alloy produces rich, vivid-yellow gold color.

leon mege white gold bar illustrationWhite gold

White gold requires periodic plating to maintain its look; it is only 75% pure compared to platinum’s 95%. Unlike platinum, which is self-burnishing, white gold is continuously shedding its top layer. And unlike some white gold alloys, platinum never contains nickel.

Rose gold

Pink gold is a blend of pure gold and copper with a very small amount of silver to tame the rich reddish color into a milder rose tone. The 18-karat pink gold contains 75 percent pure gold to 25 percent copper. “Pink gold” or “rose gold” can be used interchangeably.

Rose gold is harder and more durable than yellow gold, but unfortunately, due to its high copper content, it is prone to oxidation. Vintage pieces can be restored to their original look by repolishing. The oxidation and low ductility of the pink alloy make it harder to work with, but on the plus side, its superior hardness allows it to achieve higher gloss when polished.

Pink gold is surging in popularity as more and more people embrace its charming hint of vintage grace. Traditionally, in some countries, such as Russia, pink rather than yellow is viewed as a natural gold color.

Traditionally quoted in troy ounces, the spot gold price is the wholesale interbank price for a 400-ounce gold bar for delivery in two business days. It is the benchmark price on which all retail gold purchases are based. 

Gold and platinum prices flipped over a decade ago, and gold remains significantly more expensive than platinum. The same amount of money currently buys twice as much platinum as gold. Platinum’s low price is a fantastic buying opportunity considering that platinum is 30 times more scarce than gold.

The gold market is the largest market by value. It trades internationally 24 hours a day, Monday to Friday. Gold prices constantly change and reflect the equilibrium between supply and demand from central banks, the jewelry sector, industrial use, and investors. Most trading in gold is carried out in the futures markets on the futures exchanges. 

Gold is increasingly difficult to mine as all the easy-to-extract gold has already been mined. It is expensive and energy and labor-intensive to extract it from the earth. The political stability of gold-producing countries is also a major factor in the supply of gold to the market.

 Gold jewelry remains popular in the western world due to its beauty and status, but in many parts of the world, particularly in India and China, gold jewelry is bought as a store of wealth. Gold is a proven hedge against inflation and uncertainty; it acts as an insurance investment during times of increased risk in financial markets or political tensions.

The London gold OTC (over-the-counter) market is the most important gold market because over 87% of all trades around the world are cleared through London.

The London Fix is a single price for all gold orders used by bullion banks and institutions and determined by the market-making members of the London Bullion Market Association. 

The London Gold Market Fixing Ltd conducts the London Fix with participation from Barclays, the Bank of China, Bank of Communications, Goldman Sachs, HSBC Bank USA, JPMorgan Chase, Morgan Stanley, Société Générale, Standard Chartered, Scotia Mocatta (Scotiabank), The Toronto-Dominion Bank, and UBS.

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