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This article explains how to prepare precious metal test samples for metallographic examination. It discusses cutting, mounting, grinding, polishing, and etching and addresses some of the challenges of working with small, relatively soft specimens. It includes dozens of example micrographs, comparing and contrasting the microstructural features of gold, platinum, iridium, palladium, and ruthenium-base alloys. It examines pure gold, intermetallic gold compounds, gold and platinum jewelry alloys, platinum-containing shape memory alloys, and alloys consisting of platinum, aluminum, and copper.

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Elma van der Lingen, Lesley Cornish, Stefanie Taylor, Rainer Süss, Stewart Grice, Metallography and Microstructures of Precious Metals and Precious Metal Alloys, Metallography and Microstructures, Vol 9, ASM Handbook, Edited By George F. Vander Voort, ASM International, 2004, p 860–876,

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