Jewelry, Gems, & Minerals/duralite

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Question
Buying a large ring made of duralite. Can't find any info on this stuff beyond that it some type of aluminum oxide. What exactly IS it, how durable is it, as I can be hard on rings. I prefer sterling silver but these rings are only made of duralite and gold. Couldn't afford the gold. Would really like to know. Thanks

Answer
The DURALITE trademark was filed by J. JENKINS SONS CO., INC. of BALTIMORE for their specific line of jewelry on 2/1999, but this name has been abandoned since 4/2000 and is no longer in use.

On their own website they define Duralite as "comparable to a fine jeweler's nonprecious material. It polishes to a brilliant silver luster and is known for its strength, resistance to chemical reaction and ease of maintenance." Thus they keep the exact composition of the Duralite material a "trade secret".

DURALITE appears to be a metal ceramic based on aluminum oxide. It probably contains silicon carbide as well to make the end product hard. There are several competitors that all make these metal substitutes but name them differently, such as Alconite by Fuji corp.

The material is still in use in various fishing gear. It is a non-precious material, though. Sorry, NO gold, silver, platinum, palladium or other precious metals present in Duralite.  

Jewelry, Gems, & Minerals

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Uwe Richard Kackstaetter, Ph.D. (Dr.K)

Expertise

I can answer questions concerning minerals, mineralogy, gems, metals, and anything that has to do with geology. However, I am NOT a jeweler. Questions about values, settings, gem stone cuts and appraisals are best directed to other experts on this site. I can however aide in the identification of unknown mineral materials. As a public service and part as training for new geoscientists, our university department provides FREE mineral identification for individuals. Please contact me for details or go to http://college.earthscienceeducation.net/MIN/MINID.pdf for details..

Experience

I am a professor of applied geology and mineralogy with many hours of field experience. Furthermore, I enjoy recreational gold prospecting and mineral collecting. As a professor I am engaged in research concerning minerals and their occurrence.

Organizations
Member of the GPAA (Gold Prospectors Association of America) as well as the Association of Environmental Geochemists. Member of the GSA (Geologic Society of America) Member of the AIPG (American Institute of Professional Geologists)

Publications
Here is a small sampling: Mineral-rock handbook: Rapid-easy mineral-rock determination : written for anyone interested in minerals and rocks - Proctor, Peterson, and Kackstaetter;Macmillan Pub. Co. (New York and Toronto and New York) Physical Geology Laboratory e-Manual [CD-ROM], Kackstaetter, Earth Science Education LLC Colorado Front Range Self-guided Geology Field Trips, Kackstaetter, http://www.scribd.com/doc/27175290/Colorado-Front-Range-Self-Guided-Geology-Field-Trips

Education/Credentials
Ph.D. in Applied Geology and Mineralogy. I am actively teaching courses in mineralogy and a variety of field courses with mineral collecting opportunities. Background in precious metal exploration.

Past/Present Clients
Numerous!

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