Sterling silver. The low down and info goes here.

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edstreet

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No longer confused....
From another posts I was asking, as was others, about Sterling silver.

http://www.penturners.org/forum/f14/sterling-silver-life-span-131998/

www.penturners.org/forum/f211/question-el-toros-132093/



The problem is there have been a number of disputes on several sides of the topic as to what the 'truth' is. It has been my attempt to find out the truth of the matter and my first stop, today in fact, was to Berea Hardwoods. They are the manufactures of the 'sterling silver' kits. They also make a wide variety of other platings like platinum, rose gold and the like. This is the reply I got when I inquired about the plating process.

Dear Mr. Street,

Thank you for your interest in our products. In response to your question:

Our chrome is trivalent chromium plate. Chromium's symbol is Cr and is the 24th element listed in the Periodic Table.

Our sterling silver is an alloy of silver containing 92.5% silver and 7.5% copper by mass .Silver is the 47th element listed in the Periodic Table and its symbol is Ag.Sterling silver plating is extremely common; Google sterling silver plating for many examples.

Regards,

The Berea Hardwoods Co. Inc.

The Berea Hardwoods Co. Inc.
18745 Sheldon Rd.
Middleburg Hts. Ohio 44130
Phone: 216 898-8956
Fax: 216 898-8962

PRIVLEGED - PRIVATE AND CONFIDENTIAL

This email and any files transmitted with it are intended solely for the use of the addressee(s) and may contain information which is confidential or privileged. If you received this email and you are not the addressee(s) [or responsible for delivery of the email to the addressee(s)], please disregard the contents of the email, delete the email and notify the author immediately

Sterling silver plating is the most shiny. One of my upcoming projects is to get the same kit with all 4 types of plating, sterling silver, chrome, rhodium and platinum then take a compare photo and show the difference.

As you can see the plating itself is indeed 'sterling'.
 
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Smitty37

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The Definition is the classic definition of Sterling Silver 92.5% silver 7.5% copper. Silver is shinier than any of the other metals listed. So the statement is true.

Sterling Silver does not wear like Chrome and it will tarnish.

Then the question becomes one of all Sterling Silver or Sterling Silver Plate. I think most offerings will be plate but I could be wrong....if it is not plate it WILL be very expensive..
 
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OKLAHOMAN

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The Definition is the classic definition of Sterling Silver 92.5% silver 7.5% copper. Silver is shinier than any of the other metals listed. So the statement is true.

Sterling Silver does not wear like Chrome and it will tarnish.

Then the question becomes one of all Sterling Silver or Sterling Silver Plate. I think most offerings will be plate but I could be wrong....if it is not plate it WILL be very expensive..
Leroy, you are 100% right as the Solid Sterling Component Sets run from $219 up
 

OKLAHOMAN

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Ed yes apples and oranges but just wanted to make sure folks here knew that the question posted was "plating not "solid"
 

Smitty37

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Leroy, you are 100% right as the Solid Sterling Component Sets run from $219 up

Yet this is about sterling silver PLATING. Technically by definition solid and plating is apples and oranges, no?
Sterling Silver whether solid or plated is the same alloy. Silver (other than Sterling Silver) on the other hand can contain either more or less silver than sterling silver. US Silver coins for instance were 90% silver and 10% copper - a little less silver than an equal weight of sterling. They would wear a tad better than sterling silver coins.
 

lwalper

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I had always been under the impression that the silver alloy (sterling) would not plate as an alloy. Isn't the silver in solution the pure stuff?--with just a few microns of metal actually being plated to the base metal, typically copper? If the plating solution is a mixture of copper/silver, how do you know what percentage of each is being plated to the base?
 

Smitty37

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I had always been under the impression that the silver alloy (sterling) would not plate as an alloy. Isn't the silver in solution the pure stuff?--with just a few microns of metal actually being plated to the base metal, typically copper? If the plating solution is a mixture of copper/silver, how do you know what percentage of each is being plated to the base?
You have just been under the wrong impression. Sterling Silver plate has been used for years in many applications.
 
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edstreet

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No longer confused....
I wonder why solid silver components are so expensive. Silver is cheap right now.
A baron's metal components weight is 0.65oz. A full Jr George bag, including the bag, refill cartridge, brass tubes, etc is 1.65 oz. Spot silver price today is $16.37.

Melt value on a solid silver pen kit would be a whopping $10.64. I think you are paying more for sentimental value than actual material cost. Perhaps because it's 'high end' you are paying a nosebleed premium? :)
 

OKLAHOMAN

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As the solid sterling component sets that are now available are made in limited numbers, your not only paying for the silver but the artists design time melting and pouring time, his cleaning up threading time, his the lost wax castings, your looking at hours not seconds of manufacturing time.
 

Smitty37

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I wonder why solid silver components are so expensive. Silver is cheap right now.
A baron's metal components weight is 0.65oz. A full Jr George bag, including the bag, refill cartridge, brass tubes, etc is 1.65 oz. Spot silver price today is $16.37.

Melt value on a solid silver pen kit would be a whopping $10.64. I think you are paying more for sentimental value than actual material cost. Perhaps because it's 'high end' you are paying a nosebleed premium? :)
The Argentium Sterling that you mention is a propritary alloy. It is marketed in alloys that are either .935 or .960 percent silver making it purer than Sterling. It is highly resistant to tarnish, but not totally immune according to the maker. I doubt that anyone making Silver plated pen parts or Sterling Silver plated pen parts is using it.

Traditional Sterling Silver items have an very high cost because it has problems in workability - making items out of Sterling requires some labor intensive steps.
 

BRobbins629

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Silver plate comes out of the process shiny and ready for use. Cast silver from lost wax process looks like this out of the mold.

While getting a piece to this stage is probably less than $10 including labor to cast the hard work to clean it up can take a while. Sprues need to be filed smooth and considerably polishing needs to take place. Most of the cost for solid sterling is labor. not material

I wonder why solid silver components are so expensive. Silver is cheap right now.
A baron's metal components weight is 0.65oz. A full Jr George bag, including the bag, refill cartridge, brass tubes, etc is 1.65 oz. Spot silver price today is $16.37.

Melt value on a solid silver pen kit would be a whopping $10.64. I think you are paying more for sentimental value than actual material cost. Perhaps because it's 'high end' you are paying a nosebleed premium? :)
 

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edstreet

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No longer confused....
While getting a piece to this stage is probably less than $10 including labor to cast the hard work to clean it up can take a while. Sprues need to be filed smooth and considerably polishing needs to take place. Most of the cost for solid sterling is labor. not material
So perhaps making something on the wood lathe out of a sterling rod of some form would be the better choice than the casting route?
 

vtgaryw

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No statement from them though regarding wear characteristics.

Plating wear is dictated by a number of factors, including plating thickness and what material it is plated over. Many platings require a layer of another plating material over the base metal to ensure proper adhesion and durability. I'm not familiar with sterling silver though.

Gary
 

BRobbins629

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So perhaps making something on the wood lathe out of a sterling rod of some form would be the better choice than the casting route?
Fabricating and casting each have their place. You can also form a centerband from silver sheet by bending and soldering. In the jewelry field, some like to cast and some like to make. There are many ways to get to a final product. Depends on your capability, what equipment and material you have etc. So not better, just another approach. Still a lot of finishing work for any method. Many jewelers make round parts with no lathe.
 

Smitty37

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I wonder why solid silver components are so expensive. Silver is cheap right now.
A baron's metal components weight is 0.65oz. A full Jr George bag, including the bag, refill cartridge, brass tubes, etc is 1.65 oz. Spot silver price today is $16.37.

Melt value on a solid silver pen kit would be a whopping $10.64. I think you are paying more for sentimental value than actual material cost. Perhaps because it's 'high end' you are paying a nosebleed premium? :)
Ed, looking at the "spot" price of silver is a meaningless exercise unless you are a very well informed comodities and silver investor. Silver and gold prices have a negitive relationship with the stock market they go down if the market is going up and visa-versa...the market has been going up so they have been going down. That will not last forever. Get a crash in the stock market and the silver price could double over night.
 

Smitty37

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I wonder why solid silver components are so expensive. Silver is cheap right now.
A baron's metal components weight is 0.65oz. A full Jr George bag, including the bag, refill cartridge, brass tubes, etc is 1.65 oz. Spot silver price today is $16.37.

Melt value on a solid silver pen kit would be a whopping $10.64. I think you are paying more for sentimental value than actual material cost. Perhaps because it's 'high end' you are paying a nosebleed premium? :)
Spot silver price is for a troy ounce which is a couple of grams heavier than a standard US ounce. Spot silver price is also usually a futures price and not a "delivered" price.
 
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Smitty37

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I wonder why solid silver components are so expensive. Silver is cheap right now.
A baron's metal components weight is 0.65oz. A full Jr George bag, including the bag, refill cartridge, brass tubes, etc is 1.65 oz. Spot silver price today is $16.37.

Melt value on a solid silver pen kit would be a whopping $10.64. I think you are paying more for sentimental value than actual material cost. Perhaps because it's 'high end' you are paying a nosebleed premium? :)
Of course you are Ed, that is true of any manufactured product made from any material. Sometime check the variation in price of 16 oz. hammers with fiberglass handles. $4.00 for a Pittsburgh from Harbor Freight to close $30 for a Plumb with lots of stops in between.

BTW I have personally gone the extra price for a Plumb --- I also own a Stanley and an off brand as well. In addition I have a couple of wooden handled hammers. I say this just to illustrate that price isn't the only driving factor when we make purchases.
 
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magier412

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If you were interested in fabricating or casting sterling silver (or other precious metal) pens or parts, I'd recommend riogrande.com as a source. As a silversmith and jeweler, I use them as my go to all the time. As for pricing, spot is for unworked metals, so you can generally expect to pay at least $6/ounce for working - i.e., turning into sheet, tube, etc.. There are other sources, but Rio is what most jewelers use. And if you are looking for silver or gold or mokume gane sheet to fabricate into pen parts, they'd be where I'd go. ;)

In fact, geez, silver is at $16.61 today...time to stock up on some metal for my studio!
 
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edstreet

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Sterling Silver does not wear like Chrome and it will tarnish.
Show me ONE example, please, of a sterling silver pen kit that has tarnish on it. If they do indeed tarnish then ok, if they do not then ok but that info does need to be shown. I do like to keep things factual and not hearsay.
 

Smitty37

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Sterling Silver does not wear like Chrome and it will tarnish.
Show me ONE example, please, of a sterling silver pen kit that has tarnish on it. If they do indeed tarnish then ok, if they do not then ok but that info does need to be shown. I do like to keep things factual and not hearsay.
Ed, read up on Sterling Silver....it is a fact that Sterling Silver will indeed tarnish, regardless of what the application is. I know that from personal experience owning Sterling Silver silverware which my daughter still owns. Sterling Silver is Sterling Silver.
 

edstreet

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No longer confused....
Sterling Silver does not wear like Chrome and it will tarnish.
Show me ONE example, please, of a sterling silver pen kit that has tarnish on it. If they do indeed tarnish then ok, if they do not then ok but that info does need to be shown. I do like to keep things factual and not hearsay.
Ed, read up on Sterling Silver....it is a fact that Sterling Silver will indeed tarnish, regardless of what the application is. I know that from personal experience owning Sterling Silver silverware which my daughter still owns. Sterling Silver is Sterling Silver.

I understand that silver tarnishes, understand that very well.

however ...

I was asking for something very specific,

sterling silver plated pen kits with tarnish on it.


I have posted very specific opening information in the benefits of finding out the truth and I would very much appreciate if you were to do the same on this thread. Not speak in vague generalities. You would think with 19,900 members there would be at least ONE that could post or pm or email me a photo of the tarnish.
 

KenV

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Ed -- I have a few pens advertised as sterling silver. They appear to be clear coat treated. Have not had one of the silver ones that was bare metal surface.

When the pens have been damaged, the clear coat is penetrated, and the shiny metal does not stop much and brass shows. Not tarnished silver -- but bright to tarnished brass where scratched or worn.

Not like the old days when 24caret told was just that and wore through to the brass very very quickly. Clear coats have made a difference in durabillty of metal films.
 

Smitty37

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Sterling Silver does not wear like Chrome and it will tarnish.
Show me ONE example, please, of a sterling silver pen kit that has tarnish on it. If they do indeed tarnish then ok, if they do not then ok but that info does need to be shown. I do like to keep things factual and not hearsay.
Ed, read up on Sterling Silver....it is a fact that Sterling Silver will indeed tarnish, regardless of what the application is. I know that from personal experience owning Sterling Silver silverware which my daughter still owns. Sterling Silver is Sterling Silver.

I understand that silver tarnishes, understand that very well.

however ...

I was asking for something very specific,

sterling silver plated pen kits with tarnish on it.


I have posted very specific opening information in the benefits of finding out the truth and I would very much appreciate if you were to do the same on this thread. Not speak in vague generalities. You would think with 19,900 members there would be at least ONE that could post or pm or email me a photo of the tarnish.
Ed I spoke in actual fact....Sterling Silver does tarnish. Whether anyone has a picture of a Sterling Silver Pen Kit with tarnish or not, doesn't prove or disprove anything at all. I personally don't own a sterling silver pen kit with or without tarnish. You have had the truth, supported by all kinds of information available to anyone and as usual you refuse to accept truth that does not meet your personal version of it. So I'll drop out of this conversation.
 

79spitfire

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*snicker*

I have several samples of Sterling (not pens) and I can attest it does indeed tarnish. It seems to me the tarnish does form slower than other alloys of silver.

Silver as a material is very durable. Any pen using silver hardware would easily outlast the first owner.
 

skiprat

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You post something and the entire world is supposed to believe your every word, anyone else says something and you insult them by calling it hearsay.

Now, I have to admit that you do know some stuff and you can take a decent picture, but jeesh, you are without doubt the most obnoxious narcissist I have ever come across.

Here is a pic of a pen that was labelled as Sterling Silver. There is of course no such thing as Sterling Silver Plate....if it's plated then it ISN'T Sterling.

Sterling Silver does not wear like Chrome and it will tarnish.
Show me ONE example, please, of a sterling silver pen kit that has tarnish on it. If they do indeed tarnish then ok, if they do not then ok but that info does need to be shown. I do like to keep things factual and not hearsay.
 

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edstreet

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No longer confused....
You post something and the entire world is supposed to believe your every word, anyone else says something and you insult them by calling it hearsay.

Now, I have to admit that you do know some stuff and you can take a decent picture, but jeesh, you are without doubt the most obnoxious narcissist I have ever come across.

Here is a pic of a pen that was labelled as Sterling Silver. There is of course no such thing as Sterling Silver Plate....if it's plated then it ISN'T Sterling.

Sterling Silver does not wear like Chrome and it will tarnish.
Show me ONE example, please, of a sterling silver pen kit that has tarnish on it. If they do indeed tarnish then ok, if they do not then ok but that info does need to be shown. I do like to keep things factual and not hearsay.

Thank you very much for the photo of the tarnished solid sterling silver pen that is one part of things. Now if we can locate one that is plated and get a photo of that.

I have applied the 'everything is hearsay unless you can show facts' to this thread to keep out the falsehoods, the myths and the like, then only thing left will be the truth. I prefer the facts listed so everyone can see them, i.e. the posting from berea and your photo.

I will also be subjecting one of the platted kits to artificial tarnishing in the weeks to come for this thread. Apart from that I will also be calling a shop that I work with who has a spark analyzer for cast iron. I think it will show gold and silver in the report and if it does then it might be able to get a reading from that.
 

skiprat

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That pen is plated. It was fraudulently sold by the vendor as Sterling.
If an item is sold or claimed as Sterling, then it MUST have a mark to prove it.
No mark.....not Sterling.
 

Spanx

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You post something and the entire world is supposed to believe your every word, anyone else says something and you insult them by calling it hearsay.

Now, I have to admit that you do know some stuff and you can take a decent picture, but jeesh, you are without doubt the most obnoxious narcissist I have ever come across.

Here is a pic of a pen that was labelled as Sterling Silver. There is of course no such thing as Sterling Silver Plate....if it's plated then it ISN'T Sterling.

Sterling Silver does not wear like Chrome and it will tarnish.
Show me ONE example, please, of a sterling silver pen kit that has tarnish on it. If they do indeed tarnish then ok, if they do not then ok but that info does need to be shown. I do like to keep things factual and not hearsay.

So I guess personal attacks are allowed when there directed at Ed.

So Skip,are you saying that the owners of Berea are liars?
 

edstreet

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No longer confused....
I was able to locate a few additional things of value.

Sterling Silver: What it Is, and is Not | eBay

About the phrase "sterling silver plated" or "sterling silver filled:"
There is no such thing as sterling silver plated or sterling silver filled. These are misnomers that are cropping up more and more often to refer to silver plated items i.e. "another material, brass/pewter/white metal/plastic etc, that are plated with a layer of pure silver" or "another material that is overlaid by a mechanical process with a layer of silver." Always check for the word plated or filled in the description even if you see sterling in the title. Especially if the price looks too good to be true. If you don't see the word plated or filled, and the price is still too good to be true, try searching the listing using the "Search" or "Find" function under "Edit" in your browser. Sometimes it is in very small print.

If you see " STERLING SILVER PLATED" or " STERLING SILVER FILLED" items listed to the right of this guide, they are a good example of this deceptive practice. Since sterling silver items cost more than silver plated or filled items, manufacturers and sellers can get more people to look at their items by mis-describing them. The proper term for these items is "silver plated" or "silver filled."
"15 U.S. Code § 297 Stamping plated articles"

(a) Words “sterling” or “coin” forbidden
In the case of articles of merchandise made in whole or in part of an inferior metal, having deposited or plated thereon or brazed or otherwise affixed thereto a plating, covering, or sheet composed of gold or silver, or of an alloy of either of said metals, and known in the market as rolled gold plate, gold plate, gold filled, silver plate, or gold or silver electroplate, or by any similar designation, so imported into or exported from the United States, or so deposited in the United States mails for transmission, or so delivered to any common carrier, or so transported or caused to be transported as specified in section 294 of this title, no such article, nor any tag, card, or label attached thereto, nor any box, package, cover, or wrapper in which such article is encased or inclosed, shall be stamped, branded, engraved, or imprinted with any word or mark usually employed to indicate the fineness of gold, unless such word or mark be accompanied by other words, plainly indicating that such article or part thereof is made of rolled gold plate, gold plate, or gold electroplate, or is gold filled, as the case may be, and no such article, nor any tag, card, or label attached thereto, nor any box, package, cover, or wrapper in which such article is incased or inclosed, shall be stamped, branded, engraved, or imprinted with the word “sterling” or the word “coin”, either alone or in conjunction with other words or marks.

"15 U.S. Code § 296 - Standard of fineness of silver articles; deviation"

In the case of articles of merchandise made in whole or in part of silver or any of its alloys so imported into or exported from the United States, or so deposited in the United States mails for transmission, or so delivered for transportation to any common carrier, or so transported or caused to be transported as specified in section 294 of this title, the actual fineness of the silver or alloy thereof of which such article is wholly or partly composed shall not be less by more than four one-thousandth parts than the actual fineness indicated by any mark (other than the word “sterling” or the word “coin”) stamped, branded, engraved, or printed upon any part of such article, or upon any tag, card, or label attached thereto, or upon any box, package, cover, or wrapper in which such article is incased or inclosed; and that no such article or tag, card, or label attached thereto, or box, package, cover, or wrapper in which such article is incased or inclosed shall be marked, stamped, branded, engraved, or printed with the word “sterling” or “sterling silver” or any colorable imitation thereof, unless such article or parts thereof purporting to be silver contains nine hundred and twenty-five one-thousandth parts pure silver; and that no such article, tag, card, label, box, package, cover, or wrapper shall be marked, stamped, branded, engraved, or printed with the words “coin” or “coin silver” or colorable imitation thereof unless such article or parts thereof purporting to be silver contains nine hundred one-thousandth parts pure silver: Provided, That in the case of all such articles whose fineness is indicated by the word “sterling” or the word “coin” there shall be allowed a divergence in the fineness of four one-thousandth parts from the foregoing standards: Provided, That in any test for the ascertainment of the fineness of any such article mentioned in this section according to the foregoing standards the part of the article taken for the test, analysis, or assay shall be such part or portion as does not contain or have attached thereto any solder or alloy of inferior fineness used for brazing or uniting the parts of such article: Provided further, That in the case of any article mentioned in this section, in addition to the foregoing tests and standards, the actual fineness of the entire quantity of silver or of its alloys contained in such article, including all solder and alloy of inferior fineness used for brazing or uniting the parts of such article (all such silver, alloys, and solder being assayed as one piece), shall not be less by more than ten one-thousandth parts than the fineness indicated by the mark stamped, branded, engraved, or imprinted upon such article, or upon any tag, card, or label attached thereto, or upon any box, package, cover, or wrapper in which such article is incased or inclosed, it being intended that the standards of fineness and the tests or methods for ascertaining the same provided in this section for articles mentioned therein shall be concurrent and not alternative.

According to this under USC it is illegal to list these pen kits as 'sterling silver' when they are in fact plated. The illegal part is the use of the words 'sterling'. This includes bags, labels, tags and website entries.
 
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Spanx

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Thanks Ed for that info.

It appears that Skip is right.It cannot be labled sterling silver if it is plated no matter how pure the plating is.

I understand that now.To be called sterling silver the whole thing must be made of silver not just a portion of it.

I take back my last statement Skip.They are indeed lying when labling a plating sterling silver.

I'm sorry for shooting my mouth off.
 
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