Stop what you’re doing and look at the prongs on your ring right now.
Are they spaced evenly apart?
Do they have the same sized gap in between all the prongs all the way around your diamond?
With most heads (the nubs that hold in your diamond), you will either have 4 prongs or 6 prongs (see picture), that come up and wrap over the top of your diamond, holding it securely into the mounting.
With a round brilliant cut diamond (the most popular cut of diamond), the spaces between each and every prong should be evenly spaced.
Those gaps should be equal in every way. Whether it’s 4 prongs or 6 prongs, it doesn’t matter. The prongs should have the same distance between them.
Why is this so important?
Prongs serve great purpose and why they are spaced evenly.
So let’s look at them:
- To prevent your diamond from accidental blows.
- To keep your diamond from falling out of the mounting.
- To make it easy to clean underneath your diamond.
- To add an even amount of light into your stone.
- To be aesthetically and visually pleasing.
- To enhance the shape of the stone.
- To protect the weakest part of the diamond; the girdle.
- To make your diamond appear larger.
Prongs do all of this?
Yes, they do.
So if you ever look down and see your prongs bent (the prongs should be perfectly straight except where they bend over the stone), or your see them leaning towards another prong, take it to a local jeweler and have them checked out professionally.
Usually uneven gaps mean that you bumped your prongs, or hit them hard enough to bend them sideways. Make sure you have the jeweler check your diamond for damage as well (bent prongs can harm your stone and leave the girdle vulnerable to chips and cracks).
Can’t take the stress?
Have them check your prongs for signs of stress or cracks in the metal (especially gold).
Most of the times, the jewelers can bend the prongs back into position with jeweler’s pliers, and your ring will be good to go (don’t do this yourself, you may break the edge of your stone).
The jewelers can also check to see if your prongs have microscopic fissures or cracks in the posts (which is normal if it’s bent really good). Prongs with cracks have to be soldered to fix them.
If you can’t tell if your prongs are straight or spaced evenly, have a jeweler take a closer look.
Better safe than sorry.
Do keep in mind, not all prongs are meant to be spaced evenly in all types of rings. Some prongs and heads are made differently for different shaped stones, along with some custom designed mountings.
Head and prongs for a marquise cut diamond (football shaped), are different than a round head (like the one shown in the picture). Marquise heads will normally have 6 prongs, 2 on each side of the diamond, and 2 at the tips of the diamond (a lot of times those prongs at the tips are actually thick, flat, V-tipped prongs that cover the points).
Some heads have double prongs
Some rings have basket heads, some have built in prongs, others have designer curved prongs with rounded tips or beads. The list is endless. Jewelry is an art form with no bounds.
It just all depends on your ring, your mounting, and of course your diamond.
If you don’t know for sure, see a jeweler.
If you have a round brilliant cut diamond (see picture), chances are good that if your prongs are bent, leaning, or too close to one another, you probably hit your ring with a sharp blow, and it may have caused some serious damage to the mounting or the diamond. It’s wise to keep an eye on your prongs.
If you bump something really hard, check your head.
Prongs are good indicators
Your prongs are usually a good indicator as to the condition of the rest of your ring, too.
If your prongs are strong and straight, you’re in good shape. If they’re leaning and bent, look out! Your ring and diamond is in danger. Get it taken care of a.s.a.p.
For you don’t want to risk chipping or breaking your beautiful diamond.
Prongs can be fixed, but a chipped diamond can’t be.
So have your rings cleaned and checked a couple of times a year at your local jeweler just to be safe.
If you take care of your prongs, your prongs will take care of your diamond.