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Can you Scratch a Platinum Ring?

People are always under the impression that Platinum Can’t Scratch!

Why they think this, I don’t know.

It could be because everyone says that Platinum is so Durable. It could be because it’s a Very Heavy Metal. It could be because of Price?

Who knows what people really think.

But the truth is, once you lift a Platinum Ring, you’ll understand their thinking. Platinum Feels HEAVY! It Feels Very Solid. People are always Surprised at how Massive it feels.

Platinum Feels like a Ring!

And if the Weight doesn’t get you, the Price Tag will. Not only is Platinum Twice as Heavy as Gold, but it’s also about 4 times the Price! Ouch!

What ever you may think about Platinum and Scratching… put it out of your mind. Because…

You CAN Scratch Platinum!

Obviously anything that Platinum comes in contact with, that’s Stronger than it, will Scratch it.

The Strength and Hardness of Platinum is based upon the Mohs Mineral Scale of Hardness. Platinum is a 4-4.5 on that Scale. Which also means that anything higher up the list is bound to Scratch Platinum. Let’s take a look at 12 things higher up the list that will Scratch Platinum:

What Scratches Platinum?

  1. Tooth Enamel – (5 on the Mohs Scale) Yep, your teeth will Scratch Platinum.
  2. Glass – (6-7 on the Mohs Scale) Be careful with that Glass of Wine.
  3. Knife Blade – (5.5 on the Mohs Scale) Look out for Freddy Krueger!
  4. Moonstone – (6-6.5 on the Mohs Scale) Does it really come from the Moon?
  5. Pyrite – (6.5 on the Mohs Scale) Even Fools Gold is Harder than Platinum!
  6. Garnet – (7-7.5 on the Mohs Scale) Garnets are the Birthstone for January!
  7. Quartz – (7 on the Mohs Scale) Gemstones like Amethyst, Citrine and Agate!
  8. Beryl – (7.5-8 on the Mohs Scale) Gems like Emerald and Aquamarine!
  9. Steel File – (7-8 on the Mohs Scale) This is why Files are used for fixing Jewelry!
  10. Topaz – (8 on the Mohs Scale) Blue Topaz, Yellow Topaz, Smokey Topaz!
  11. Corundum – (9 on the Mohs Scale) Precious Gemstones like Sapphire and Ruby!
  12. Diamond – (10 on the Mohs Scale) Actually 4 times harder than Corundum!

Keep in mind that these are only things Harder than Platinum and will Scratch it! Gold and Silver only rate a 2.5-3 on the Mohs Scale! Other items on the Mohs Scale are just irrelevant for our topic!

Platinum is Malleable

The interesting thing about Platinum is that not only is it Durable, but it’s Malleable at the same time. You see Platinum normally will not Bend and Break. That’s why Platinum Heads and Prongs are great for holding in your Diamonds. Gold Prongs as a comparison, will Bend Back easily and Snap off. You could Lose your Diamond if you’re not careful.

Platinum is Stronger than Gold!

Much Stronger! But even though it’s Stronger, it can still be Scratched. The odd thing is, it Scratches differently than Gold does. When you Scratch Gold, you actually Dig out Chunks of Gold in the process. (You Lose Gold!) Platinum when it’s Scratched, will not remove any Platinum. Instead it leaves Indentations that Rise up like a Wall. Jewelers can actually Push that Wall back into the Crevice again, making it Flat. Cool eh?

So even though Platinum is 4 times the Price of Gold… Even though it Weighs Twice as much and Lasts Ten Times as Long.. You still have to be careful with it. It’ll still show signs of Wear and Tear. It’ll Scratch up, get Dull, and look Frosted. Granted, you may have to hit your Ring Harder to Scratch it, but…

It’s not Scratch Resistant!

Take it to any Jeweler a couple of times a year and have them Polish out those Scratches. (This also takes 4 times as long as Gold does!) Removing the Scratches will make your Platinum Ring look brand new again. (Now if you’ll only stay away from Elm Street and the Nightmare, you’ll be fine!)

If you want to learn more about Platinum, read my blog on “Is Platinum worth the Price?

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  1. I have a platinum wedding ring that I have had for almost 14 years. Up until recently I would take it to the jeweler I purchased it from and they would clean and buff it out perfectly – looked brand new. My husband took the ring in recently to have it cleaned and buffed and the scratches were not removed at all. I took it back and had them do it again and it still does not look as good as it used to. When I asked why I was told that it’s too hard to do and that not many people are brave enough to tackle buffing platinum. They also told my husband that it’s not as strong as gold and that is why gold is more preferred for wedding bands. I was under the impression, and reading your article says the same, that it was stronger than gold. So is there a way I can buff out the ridges of the platinum myself? I have access to a grinding wheel that has a buffer attachment. would that work? I am very frustrated with this as my ring looks like crap all the time.

    • Hi Sandy. You can buff out Platinum, but it is much harder to do than Gold. Gold is malleable and polishes easily. But Platinum requires force and time. And even then it’s possible that it won’t buff out as perfect or smooth. Platinum is more durable than Gold, as far as scratching and wear and tear. Jewelers do prefer Gold, just because it’s easier to fix, polish, shape, size… No matter, it can be done, you just need to hunt around town and find a local jeweler that is more experienced with Platinum and polishing it. :) -Richard

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