Have you taken a good look at your ring recently? If not, take it off and inspect its shank, which is how jewelers refer to the body of your ring (or its band). If the shank’s wall is too thin and bends easily, you might be in for trouble – if you wait too long before having your ring repaired, it may break at some point.
Thin shanks are a common problem with rings (remember not to confuse the thickness of the ring’s shank with its width). But what are the reasons your ring is too thin, and what can you do to prevent or fix this problem?
Choose the Material of Your Ring Carefully
One of the most common reasons that rings bend and break is that they get thinner over time as a result of normal wear.
The more often you wear your ring, the more likely it is to wear down.
The result is especially visible in the band’s lower portion, which wears thin the quickest.
One way to ensure that your ring doesn’t wear quickly is to be smart about picking the metal its shank is made of.
Generally, softer metals and alloys are not a good choice if you are looking for durability. Yellow gold, for instance, is more prone to wearing and bending, and that’s why it is most suitable for rings that you will wear less frequently.
If you want a ring that will last a lot longer, go with one whose shank is made of a very durable material. For example, a platinum ring is a jewelry piece you can wear every day without seeing any significant signs of wear.
Don’t Buy Rings That Are Too Thin
Some rings are just not made with particularly thick walls. Before you buy a ring, make sure that its shank is not overly thin.
This is often the case with cheap jewelry, which costs less partly because less material has been used in its making.
Remember that even if you are attracted by the low price, once the ring wears too thin, you may have to pay more money for its shank to be fixed or replaced.
If for some reason you still want to go with that thin ring, at least minimize the risk of damage by picking a durable material or wearing the ring less often.
To keep any possible problems at a minimum, however, it’s best to buy rings with reasonably solid shanks.
Related: Browse a selection of fine diamond rings.
Get Your Ring Size Right Before You Buy
There is another way your ring can get thinner – in the process of adjusting its size.
Resizing a ring often involves carving out some material from the shank or cutting and rejoining it followed by polishing.
During this process, the walls of the shank can get too thin, depending on how drastic the change in size is. And sometimes, an inexperienced jeweler may remove too much metal.
Regardless of the particular reason, the best way to avoid ending up with a thinner shank is to make sure your ring fits well before you buy it so it won’t need resizing later.
However, no matter how well your ring fits at the time of purchase, there is always the possibility that the size of your finger may change years later – it happens more often than you think.
To make sure you are not surprised unpleasantly in the future by a resizing procedure that leaves your band too thin, get yourself a ring that is solid enough.
And, of course, pick your jeweler carefully to ensure he or she has enough experience in sizing rings.
Fixing a Worn Shank
Once your shank gets too thin from wearing, the best remedy is to get a new one. A jewelers can replace your old shank with one that is thicker and more durable.
Another possibility is to have only the worn portion of your shank cut out and replaced, but the viability of this option depends on the type of metal or alloy used and the severity of the problem.
You should have your rings inspected by a jeweler for worn shanks at least once every two years. It is even safer to do so every year if your ring is made of a softer material such as yellow gold and you wear it often.
If your shank is so thin as to bend, don’t put off fixing it as it may break very soon. You don’t want to lose your ring and your stones with it, especially if they are more expensive gems such as diamonds.