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Which Silver Doesn't Tarnish? Argentium

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Q. Which is the silver that does not tarnish -- is it sterling silver or just silver.

Roger Martinez
jeweler - Wyoming, Michigan


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A. Dear Roger!

All commercial silver alloys tarnish. Pure silver too.

Goran Budija
- Zagreb, Croatia


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A. Silver that will not tarnish would be the one that is kept in a vacuum or has something on top to isolate its surface from the atmosphere (if you take it to outer space or other environment that does not contain sulfur it will be OK). There is also a number of alloys or metals that resemble silver and do not tarnish like platinum, palladium, etc.

Guillermo Marrufo
Monterrey, NL, Mexico


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A. If you meant "which silver is less prone to tarnishing" then it would be pure/fine silver (which is usually too soft for most jewelry applications).

Jason Aube
- Flint, Michigan


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A. Some sterling silver is coated with (I think) "Rodidium" I've also heard it called Mexican or Argentinean silver and this does not tarnish. Could someone please tell me if this is the correct metal.

Paula Newcombe
- Hamilton


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That would be "rhodium", Paula.

pic of Ted Mooney Teds signature
Ted Mooney, P.E. RET
finishing.com
Pine Beach, New Jersey


Argentium Silver

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Thanks
Discovered the right mineral right after I posted this.
Did you know though there seems to be a new process of melting the silver so it won't tarnish. This silver is called Argentium silver.

Paula Newcombe
- Hamilton, Ontario, Canada


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Thanks, Paula. Argentium® silver is apparently an alloy that includes germanium which is claimed to discourage tarnishing. I don't personally know much else about it but some silversmiths apparently feel it's quite good.

pic of Ted Mooney Teds signature
Ted Mooney, P.E. RET
finishing.com
Pine Beach, New Jersey

Argentium Silver Earrings


wikipedia icon
Argentium Sterling Silver


February 26, 2010

Q. I've been looking into buying a sterling silver anklet. I spent the last few days learning everything I can about sterling silver. I felt like, I guess I'll just have to maintain my anklet to keep it in new condition. Then I came across this article about argentium silver. How does it look and feel? Is it really tarnish resistant?

Cameron Campbell
buyer - Tracy, California


August 25, 2013appended

Q. HELLO

I WISH TO PURCHASE A SILVER CHAIN...I HAVE HAD BAD LUCK LATELY AS THE CHAIN TURNS BLACK AND IS NOT EASY TO KEEP CLEAN.

WHAT TYPE OF SILVER CHAIN SHOULD I LOOK FOR THAT WILL STAY CLEAN AND NOT HAVE TO BE POLISHED?

THANK YOU

DONNA KEENE
- SOUTHINGTON Connecticut USA

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