Ever heard the story of a bridegroom who could not find a perfect ring for his fiancee? Yes, he could never get a suitable piece for his lover and the blame was on the myths he had heard and the truth he had missed about a number of items of jewellery . The story was never concluded on what he ended up doing. Forgetting his plight, what do you know about titanium rings that will make you buy or leave them alone? On my part I have heard that they will not come off easily during emergencies (never had an emergency to remove mine though but my jeweller assured me I can get it out when I want). You might have also heard that they never scratch. But one thing we cannot doubt is that titanium is stronger than most of other metals in its league. As titanium rings become more and more popular, whether titanium rings can be resized is a question that gets raised quite frequently.
A lot of Titanium ring suppliers give a warning about taking care with getting the size right as it can't be altered in the future - this isn't strictly the case as it all depends on different factors.
- Grade of Titanium
- Is it diamond set
- Does it have a precious metal inlay
- Does it need to go up or down in size
Although it isn't normally within the capabilities of a traditional jeweller to do a quick resize, there are often various options that the manufacturer can take.
Grade 2 commercially pure Titanium is quite ductile and will stretch and compress quite readily. If it has a precious metal inlay set into the outside it is probably better to take a skim out of the bore to make it bigger - stretching will normally cause the inlay to split. The quantity of increase could be up to about two sizes.
Compressing a ring with an inlay is usually feasible for about one size. Compressing plain rings depends on the outside pattern. If it is patterned then the amount of force required to compress it will undoubtedly cause too much damage to repair the outer surface economically and so should be avoided.
Domed or flat rings don't present much of a problem. Diamond set rings are fairly limited in their potential to be resized, stretching or compressing causes deformation at the weakest points where the holes have been drilled for the diamonds and so, here again, the only option is to remachine the bore to make it larger. (1 to 1.5 sizes)
Higher ductile grades of titanium, such as aircraft grade Ti/6Al/4V (or grade 5 as it is also known) will not stretch or compress. The only option with these is to increase the ring size slightly by remachining the bore larger. In many cases, particularly with plain rings, due to the amount of refinishing required with resizing it is simpler to make a new ring. This isn't always an option, for example, when a ring has been bought as a wedding ring and has been personalised with engraving and blessed in church.
To sum up, the myth about resizing titanium rings is only true in most cases. Most people need to have the size of the ring increased and this is a problem with titanium rings. The reason for this is that these rings are made from a solid piece of titanium which cannot be melted down like metal. Skilled jewellers will be able to increase the size of the ring by half a size through shaving the inside of the band. For enlarging past this size you will need to purchase a new ring in the size you need. The same problem is faced when trying to make the ring smaller. The inability to melt the metal makes it difficult to make the ring smaller.