The Making of Your Wedding Ring

September 21, 2011 by  
Filed under Wedding Jewelry

big-diamond-ringThere are a variety of different methods used to create fine jewelry. Some rings are created using wire stock which is usually either half round or flat. The designer takes a precut length of this wire and uses a ring mandrel to make the ring the desired size. The two ends are then soldered together. Using filler and polishing the ring it is made to shine and the solder point isn’t noticeable. This type of ring looks good at first but eventually the place where it was soldered will become noticeable. This is because the solder seems to tarnish at a faster rate than gold alloys.

There are other methods used to make seamless wedding rings. These rings are created from cold worked tube which allows the finished product to be seamless and solder free. A long length of tube is used and ring “blanks” are cut and machined to the proper size. A seamless ring will wear better over time and will be tarnish resistant which makes the ring stronger. When you are buying a piece of jewelry you can ask about the method used for creating the store’s rings.

Casting is a manufacturing process where a mold is created and molten metal is put into the mold and set aside to cool. This process is sometimes referred to as investment casting or the lost wax process. This is a common process for making jewelry and is an easy way to produce multiple items. The drawback to casting is that the mountings are slightly porous and less durable than hand fabricated or die struck.

The process called die striking to produce a ring is the process using metal parts mechanically stamped out of a compressed sheet of metal using steel dies. This is the same type of process used for stamping coins. A bar of alloyed gold is rolled under heavy pressure to produce a metal ribbon. The pieces are cut out using steel dies, the whole process is repeated until the ring is formed. The die striking process is very time consuming and it can require up to 35 separate steps to produce a ring. The end result is a ring that is perfectly proportioned and has a superior finish.

Hand fabrication is when a mounting is made by sawing, filling and shaping metal parts by hand and then soldering them together. This type of mounting will be a one-of-a-kind piece of jewelry. This method is very time consuming and requires a high skill level and should only be done by a talented artesian.

A quality ring will look like one continuous piece of metal and will have no large noticeable pits or bumps. The ring will be of high quality if the metal looks perfectly smooth and does not show tiny pits or pores which are called porosity. This can result from cooling the ring too slowly or by casting too many rings together. All parts of the mounting should look symmetrical, balanced and well proportioned. The piece holding the stone should not be tilted or bent. The right side of the ring should look the same as the left side.

These are some of the methods used for making jewelry. It is always a good to ask the jewelry what specific method was used to produce the jewelry you are intending to purchase. These are some things to take into consideration when looking for that special piece of jewelry.

photo by Lori107