How to know if a ring is made of stainless steel

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The stainless steel rings come in beautiful ornamental styles and can last a lifetime if given the proper care. Unfortunately, some dealers advertise stainless steel rings when they are actually made of aluminum or other materials that fog up and can even cause irritation. Learn the signs to look for when buying an authentic stainless steel ring.

Instructions

Check the weight of the ring with a jewelry scale. Silver is heavier than other metals. Some retailers advertise sterling silver rings, when the rings are actually made of aluminum. Aluminum has a density of 2700 kilograms and steel has a density of 7500 kg. If you do not have a personal jewelry scale, you can take the ring to your local jeweler.

Check for rust Stainless steel does not rust. If you see red or brown oxide forming in the ring, it is probably the result of iron particles that have contaminated the surface of the steel. Take a look at the rust and try to clean it with a cloth with a solution made in equal parts of nitric and hydrofluoric acid. However, if the ring has rust, it is probably not 100% stainless steel.

Clean the surface of the ring with a cloth to detect a natural shine, which is a feature of the stainless steel finish. If the ring is stainless steel, you should see your reflection clearly.

Hit the ring with a brass key. If the ring is made of stainless steel, it will “ting” when struck and the sound will reverberate for a long time after touching it.

You will need to

  • A brass wrench
  • A jewelry scale
  • Nitric acid
  • Hydrofluoric acid
  • A cloth

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