The reDollar lab: how we test your items

Precise Testing is Fundamental for High Payouts

Precision is critical for both the seller and the buyer. For you as a seller, a precise analysis guarantees you’ll get paid top dollar, and for us as the buyer, imprecision could result in high losses. If you’ve ever been to a pawn shop or a smaller gold-buying operation, you may have seen folks using acid to test your items, or they may not test them all before they make you an offer. They can do that, as they usually pay only between 40% and 60% of your items’ real value, so losses are included in their low offers. We pay a whopping 90% to 95% of your items’ real value, with no room for error. Our razor-thin profit margin requires us to work on a top-notch testing scale.

XRF Spectrometer

An XRF machine like this costs around $50,000, and most buying operations don’t have the financial ability to buy two or three machines for testing purposes. Working with us means working with a company using high-tech equipment for testing.

XRF Spectrometer

Energy-dispersive X-ray fluorescence technology offers the simplest, most precise way to determine the chemical composition of precious metals. It’s a non-destructive and extremely reliable method, requiring very little to no testing preparation. We can determine the composition of precious metal alloys in less than 60 seconds. We can authenticate jewelry, watches, coins, and melted precious metals. We can also detect plating on gold alloys.

The XRF machine will tell us exactly what percent gold, silver, platinum, copper, zinc, or iron can be found in a given item.

In use for: jewelry, coins, bars, nuggets, etc.

It’s not always how it looks at first glance!

It’s important for you as a seller of gold jewelry to understand the purity-deviation risk. We at work with high-tech equipment to determine the purity of your precious metals, accurate to a tenth. Our profit margin of less than 9% leaves no room for mistakes. The machines in operation are highly precise and checked with reference samples every morning.

A piece marked 14K gold is supposed to contain 58.3% or 58.5% pure gold. A piece marked 18K gold is supposed to contain 75.0% pure gold. Our gold calculator and the related purchase prices are based on that principle. BUT unfortunately, a piece marked 14K gold will not always contain 58.3% or 58.5% gold. The discrepancy may vary between 3% and 7% and in rare cases up to 10%. The situation becomes even worse with 18K gold. While we estimate the purity-deviation risk on 14K gold to be 20%, the risk on 18K gold is roughly 40%.

What’s really in your jewelry? Using more copper or silver instead of gold would increase the profit margin of the operation creating the piece of jewelry. This is happening more often than you would think. It’s a common problem we have to battle every day at

Is it legal? NO! There is a clear law stating how much pure gold must be used to create 10K gold, 14K gold, or 18K gold. We consider it a scam to break that law, but it’s almost impossible to catch those who do.

Who can I trust? Big brands like Tiffany & Co. and Cartier would never do that. The legal consequences are not worth it for them to run a scam like that.

Consequences for you! Calculate the risk of us offering less than promised on certain pieces. We test every single piece, and the risk depends very much on the item. The least risk applies for 10K. We almost always find 41.7% or 41.6% pure gold in pieces marked 10K gold.

Our Risk List

10K gold | purity-deviation risk: 0.5%
10K gold | discrepancy: -1.5% to -2.0%

14K gold | purity-deviation risk: 20%
14K gold | discrepancy: -3.0% to -7.0%

18K gold | purity-deviation risk: 40%
18K gold | discrepancy: -3.0% to -5.0%

22K gold | purity-deviation risk: 25%
22K gold | discrepancy: -2.0% to -5.0%

Magnetic Scale

The magnetic scale is able to detect tungsten cores in coins, bars, and jewelry. It is a non-destructive way to check if a tested item shows diamagnetism or magnetism.

Electromagnetic Waves

Electromagnetic waves penetrate deeply into the item to be tested. Plating is largely ignored, and the main core of the metal assessed.


Our microscope is critical for examining diamonds, gemstones, fine jewelry, and watches. It is an extremely important tool, which is why we have seven different microscopes in use.

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