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Split Rings are strong, durable connectors. Because of their overlapping construction style, they can't be easily tugged open, so they are more secure than jump rings. Split ring connectors from Rings & Things are available in a few size ranges:
Small 5-9mm split rings for jewelry making
Medium 12-15mm split rings for larger jewelry, wind chimes, etc.
Large 20-33mm split rings for custom key rings and other connections
Split ring pliers and split-ring tweezers make the 5 to 15mm sizes very easy to use, and for the larger 20-33mm key ring sizes, a letter opener or an office staple remover works well.
Sterling silver, sometimes stamped .925, is an alloy of at least 92.5% silver, and (usually) copper. It is a soft, easy to work with metal, which can be antiqued to a dark black or polished to a bright shine.
Gold fill (also called gold overlay or gold-filled) is made by using heat and pressure to apply a layer of karat gold to a base of less costly metal (usually brass). This produces a surface with karat gold. The minimum layer of karat gold must equal at least 1/20 of the total weight of the item. more info about gold fill
Silver fill is the same concept at gold fill. All of our silver-fill items are 1/10 silver filled (the minimum layer of sterling silver or fine silver is at least 1/10 of the total weight of the item).
Silver plate is plated with a layer of genuine silver (.925 sterling silver or .999 fine silver), so it closely matches the color of sterling silver. Like sterling silver and fine silver, it will slowly oxidize (tarnish) over time.
White plate is a bit grayer than silver plate, but is more resistant to tarnish. It's a great match for rhodium plated findings.
Stainless steel is solid (not plated) and it's a similar color to white plate. It's highly resistant to tarnish and corrosion (hence the name "stainless"). However, to achieve this corrosion resistance, it has added nickel, making it unsuitable for sale in the EU.
Titanium is a very strong metal that's extremely resistant to corrosion. Because of this, it's frequently used in medical implants, and it's an excellent choice for people with nickel allergies. However, it's a bit of a challenge to put keys on! We found that it helped to use a letter opener, or the staple remover that's built into the side of our office staplers.
Gunmetal is a nice black finish that may range from gun blue to matte dark gray to shiny black metal.
Gold plate and Yellow are similar in hue, and the difference isn't always visible in photos. Gold plate contains actual gold, and is a nice match for most 14kt gold alloys, but is more expensive than yellow plate. Yellow plate is a slightly brassier hue, but because the plating is less expensive, it's often slightly thicker and more durable than true gold plate.
Antiqued copper and Antiqued brass are nice warm finishes that are great for mixed-metal jewelry and can provide a nice vintage feel to your handmade creations.