Q: Can I use a Gold Acid Test for Titanium?

Tim asked:

I have what I believe to be a piece of titanium that was found on a beach in Florida. I tested it using an acid test kit. The metal tested between 14 and 18k using a gold test kit. Should titanium test like gold, or has my acid possibly gone bad?

I’m pretty sure that the acid test bottles for gold use a variety of blends of acids, with Aqua Regia being the one that actually etches gold.

Titanium will be etched by these blends, as will platinum and a variety of other metals. I don’t know at what level each titanium alloy might test. I’d suspect that common Al6-V4 alloys would result in a lower karat rating than the commercially pure grades (#1-#4).

But the acid test will not tell you that it is titanium, as opposed to platinum or tantalum or niobium.

So I don’t recommend this as a reliable alternative to the suggestions I make in “How to tell if a piece of metal is really titanium.”


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