916 hallmark with a star, what is this metal, gilded silver or gold: composition, year of manufacture, cost per gram, the use of high hallmark today and antique antiquities

Precious metal The 916 hallmark is antiquated today, as this grade was long ago replaced by others. Although a few centuries ago, a purer alloy used by jewelers simply did not exist. The mark was used in many countries of the world, but the debate as to what metal it belongs to is still going on. 

916 hallmark what kind of metal is it: gold or gilded silver

The 916th hallmark can refer to both gold and silver. This is due to the fact that in the past silver objects were often covered with gilding, which is why they were considered to be gold. Metal corresponds to 22 carats or 88 spools. 

Alloy was actively used even in pre-revolutionary times. Today masters hardly ever use it.

The sample is not a modern alloy established by GOST.

It was used to make dishes, family ornaments and other ritual items in the USSR, Spain, Portugal, Finland and other countries.  

Composition and characteristics

The sterling silver 916 was one of the purest alloys in the USSR, as it contained more than 91% of pure noble metal. Due to the extreme ductility of the metal, it could not be used without impurities. To strengthen the strength, 8.4% of copper is added to the composition. Sometimes the ligature is supplemented with nickel.

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916 hallmark what kind of metal is it: gold or gilded silver
916 sterling silver

As a result. alloy remains quite malleable, but at the same time is strong, wear-resistant, durable, and has a luster and metallic cast. The finished metal is used to make items for everyday use.

916 sterling silver - what year was it made?

The 916 hallmark of silver, unlike the lower samples, does not have a yellowish hue and is malleable enough, so it is often used by jewelers to make cutlery and delicate objects. Around the world Sample was produced from 1930 until 1994. During this period in the USSR and Spain silver products branded with a star with sickle and hammer.

Pros and cons of the test

Silver, which in Soviet times was often thought of as 916-proof gold, has its own advantages and disadvantages.

The pros consider:
increased demand for the metal due to the use of virtually pure silver;
attractive appearance of the products;
the malleability of the alloy, which allows you to quickly, easily give it the desired shape;
strength and durability of the composition.
The disadvantages include:
the natural softness of silver;
scratches appear quickly on the products;
improper storage and care loses the appearance of objects, may change the shape.

Silver Sides

SampleFraction of pure silver, %Copper, %What is it used for
SampleFraction of pure silver, %Copper, %What is it used for
8308317Low-quality jewelry, appliances
87587,512,5Interior items, tableware, jewelry
91691,68,4Tableware, tableware, exquisite jewelry
92592,57,5Jewelry, interior items, high-grade cutlery, coins, commemoratives
960964Expensive jewelry items

Where you can find rare silver with a star today

The 916 hallmark of silver was popular even before the revolution and was actively used in jewelry production. It was only in time that it was replaced by the modern, higher-quality 925 proof. Today, the metal is no longer used by jewelers, but you can find items with a star on the shelves of antique shops. The items sold there are rarities, and most likely they exist in a single copy.

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What does the stigma on products look like?

916 sterling silver - what year was it made?
916 sterling silver

The first system of measurement used in Russia at that time was the spelt system. But it was replaced by the metric system with the advent of the new power of the USSR.

At first, the jewelry was branded with a numerical assay with the imprint of the worker's head next to it.

One more variant of the stamp on such items is a star with a sickle and hammer, which was the Soviet symbolism at that time. Next to the hallmark was a letter symbol indicating the district where the silver item was made.  

The cost of the sample relative to the exchange price

The price of noble metals on the market changes quite frequently. Over the past ten years, the 916 mark could be sold for 20-40 rubles per gram. On the exchange, the price is set as per troy ounce. Lately, prices are constantly changing, but there is a tendency of price growth, which can be seen in the chart:

Table - price per gram of silver
Price per gram of silver hallmark 916

Table - the price per gram of silver:

Price for 999 sample set by the Central BankThe cost of silver on the marketBuying scrapRetail price of silver in jewelry
61 ruble55 rubles50 rubles64 rubles

Antique appraisal of old silver

When evaluating a piece, professionals take into account many factors, such as the year of manufacture, weight, type of item, and preservation of appearance. So, for an antique silver ring with a mark 916, weighing about 7 grams, the owner can get not less than 2 thousand rubles. Most often, antique items are not accepted by pawnshops or assessment is too cheap.

Applications of sterling silver: dinnerware and jewelry

Silver, unlike 916-gold, is a versatile metal that can be used to make more than just precious costume jewelry. It is also used for more than just enameled cups, jugs, or other utensils, as compared to lower proofs.

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High-quality silver has always been considered the perfect gift for solemn occasions. For children's births, christenings, it was customary to give them a silver spoon that had bactericidal properties. Now at the antique market you can buy a variety of vintage items with unique design.

Antique 916 silver items

In modern salons, offering products of domestic masters gold and silver It is impossible to find 916 samples. This is due to the fact that now this precious metal grade is obsolete and no longer in demand.

But items with the mark 916, which have survived to the present day are now considered antique and are quite highly valued. By the way, products of this brand have always had a silver base, which means that the table gold, which was also often found, was only a gilded silver.

Antique 916 silver items
916 sterling silver flasks

How to Store and Wear Silver

Articles made of any precious metal require special care and proper storage. Only proper care will contribute to the preservation of the attractive appearance of silverware. Metal should be periodically wiped with a flannel or suede cloth.

It is important not to use abrasives for cleaning, which can not only destroy the material, but also leave scratches on the surface.

Wear vintage 916 jewelry with extreme care. It is best to limit the contact of rarities with water, moisture and sweat secretions. For storage dark cloth bags that can be hermetically sealed or special caskets are most suitable. It is important to keep together only items with the same assay.

Top 5 ways to clean antique silver

Proper use of silver cleaners will preserve its appearance for a long time. Precious antique objects are stored for decades and inevitably get covered with patina and rust, which only spoil the impression. To restore the antique objects to their former glamorous appearance you can use special modern means or seek help from a master. But you can also use methods designed for home cleaning. The best methods are:

  1. Tooth powder. Suitable for cleaning small jewelry without stones. It is necessary to have tooth powder, a soft brush and a small amount of water. Put the powder in a small container, add to it a few drops of warm water, mix well to a pulp. With a brush, take the resulting paste and rub the item well. After thoroughly scrubbing the surface, leave it for 5-10 minutes, and then simply rinse under running water. When you have finished cleaning, it is important to rub the silver with a cotton cloth.
  2. Citric acid. Pour water in a container (1 liter), add citric acid (1 tbsp.). The precious metal is also dipped in there. Depending on dirtiness, the items must be left in the solution for 5 to 20 minutes. If necessary, you can scrub the surface with a brush with soft bristles. After cleaning, the items should be placed in a solution of baking soda for a few minutes to help arrest the reaction. Then the silver is rinsed, dried, and rubbed until shiny.
  3. Ammonia alcohol. Used to clean small items with varying degrees of tarnish. You will need a tall container (bottle) with a wide neck. A liter of liquid is enough to add a few spoons of ammonia. The bottle is closed, shaken to mix the solution well. Now put the antique jewelry in the same place for 15 minutes. After this time, you need to drain the solution and rinse the items several times.
  4. Soda plus foil. Take 2 tablespoons of baking soda per half liter of water, boil it. Put a few small pieces of foil and silver in the container and leave it for 10-15 minutes. precious metal rinsed and wiped dry.
  5. Salt solution. Not able to clean heavy dirt, but will easily remove light plaque and return the former shine to jewelry. You need to boil half a liter of liquid, add 1 tbsp. salt and baking soda. Dip the silver in the solution for 15-20 minutes, then rinse under running water.
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It is important to remember that any item may be soaked in a mild soap solution beforehand to improve the quality of cleaning. Always wipe each item dry and wipe it with a cloth after cleaning is complete. To clean products Vinegar or citric acid should not be used with stones, as it can damage them. In general, it is better to entrust the cleaning of such fragile objects to a specialist.

Cleaning antique silver
Ways to clean antique silver


I have a plate at home that resembles a gold-colored candy dish with the unfamiliar marking 916. I didn't think it was precious until I found the branding. I don't know how valuable it is, but I decided not to get rid of it just yet. First, the plate needs to be well cleaned of years of plaque.

Svetlana K. Moscow
Rita L., Samara

I love vintage things. Often I find interesting items on Avito, in antique shops. My last purchase was a 916 silver coffee spoons made in the USSR. The seller was in Moscow, as for me the price was relatively small for these items. But so far I have not yet learned how to properly navigate the cost.

I inherited from my grandmother a box with a beautiful silver dinner set. I found a 916 mark and head imprint on the surface, but I never understood what year it was made. I found information online that the impurities in this alloy are only 8.4%, which is quite unusual. Inside was a booklet with care and cleaning tips from the manufacturer. Some recommendations are much better than modern methods.

Lydia I., Ivanovo

Video: all samples of silver

Jeweler's comment

Molokanov N.M.
Molokanov N.M.
Jeweler, experience in jewelry manufacturing 26 years.
Unlike the 585 hallmark 916 gold mark was used only abroad. In Russia, up until the twentieth century, silver and gilding were branded with this hallmark. The hallmark itself is quite malleable, high-quality and expensive. It used to be used in many countries around the world as one of the purest grades of silver.
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