“I’ve got a gap!”
Ladies bring their wedding sets in for us to look at all the time.
And there’s a problem that a good portion of them have:
A gap in their soldered wedding rings.
Their wedding rings used to fit nice and snug together without any spaces or gaps.
But suddenly, their lovely little engagement ring and wedding ring have opened and pulled apart.
Now there’s a huge ugly gap in between them (and I’ve seen some large gaps).
So what causes this?
They weren’t made to fit like that. Especially since they’ve been soldered together to fuse them shut. There really should be no reason for that gap to ever exist. But it does, and here’s the main reason why:
Your rings are soldered only at the bottom.
Take a look at your rings right now. The place where the jewelers weld your rings together is at the very base of the rings (the bottom of the shank). Just a little drop of solder is all it takes. That little solder is usually enough to keep your rings safely and snugly held together and to keep that gap closed forever.
(Do keep in mind that soldering your rings together also makes them more durable and keeps them from wearing each other down because they don’t rub up against each other.)
So what causes this gap?
Somehow you caught your rings (or hit them accidentally – Snagged them on your sweater – Something!) and it was enough to pull your rings apart. You may not know you did it, but that’s the only way it can happen. Your rings were physically knocked and pulled apart (they weren’t like that when you bought them).
So what’s the cure?
Have the jeweler separate your two rings again. They’ll fix the bent rings, realign them back together, and solder them once more so they look brand new again. That’s it.
Easy as pie.
Do note that there’s not much you can do to prevent something like this from happening in the first place. And trying to be careful doesn’t work because that’s just how life is. Things happen.
You bump your rings everyday and that little solder joint at the base of your rings can crack or cause the bands to bend out of shape. The point is, something’s going to give.
Why solder only at the bottom?
Why do jewelers only solder the rings at the base… (especially since they know that gap happens?) They only solder at the bottom because it makes separating them later easier.
Yes! If you ever need your bands separated for whatever reason (say you only want to wear the wedding band now, or you want to upgrade your engagement ring later, or you just need to get heavier shanks put on them, or sized…), all it takes is just a little cut by the jeweler’s saw blade and your rings are apart.
One little solder joint does no harm to your rings. Jewelers can then work on them – No problem at all. It’s easy to file and polish up again and you’ll never know they were once joined at the hip.
See, there is a method to their madness.
If your rings were soldered all the way around (which you can always ask the jeweler to do – but I don’t recommend it), the jewelers would have to cut and file all around, smoothing everywhere, fixing both rings, sides, and shanks just to make them single again. That’s a lot of work.
And all that filing and reshaping will probably damage your mounting, thin out your channel walls, weaken your prongs, or damage your diamonds and gemstones. It may even break down the structure, durability and integrity of your rings (much worse than dealing with just a little gap. – You don’t want a frail mounting).
It’s just not worth it.
That’s why you get one small solder at the bottom of your rings.
The jeweler knows best.
And if you do have a gap… Whatever you do, don’t ignore it.
If the gap is not fixed, you could easily catch it again and rip your rings back. It could tear the mounting and do some serious damage to your diamonds and gems (I’ve seen diamonds actually get crushed in the channels). So don’t let it go. Get it fixed. It’ll save you a lot of money and headaches in the future.
Plus, it can also rip your finger, pinch it, tear it, break it… All because your rings got separated and caught.
So if for any reason you happen to catch your set and pull the rings apart, don’t worry. Take it to the local jewelry store and have the jeweler close that gap.
No more holes!
Good as new.