This doesn't mean that estate jewelry is bad, but there is a time an place for it. Unlike an antique cocktail ring, that is only worn briefly on rare occasions, an engagement ring is subject to daily wear and must hold up over time. It will be bumped, banged, scratched, covered in hand lotion and soap residue, and will be subjected to unavoidable wear and tear. Save the estate ring your first anniversary gift, and shop with the long term in mind.
What are the potential problems of estate engagement rings?
Unfortunately, used jewelry can have significant structural problems that can lead to damage or loss. Not only are these losses a financial burden, but there is also an emotional loss when an owner looses symbolic piece of jewelry like this.
The concern come when the structural integrity of the become compromised in one of three main areas; the prongs, shank, and/or stones. Any of these losses can jeopardize the entire integrity of the ring.
A prong is a thin metal projection that holds a stone(s) in place. When prongs become damaged they can no longer the stone(s) in place and will put the entire ring in jeopardy. Damaged prongs can occur from
The band of a ring is called a shank. It is the structural foundation of any engagement ring, wedding band, cocktail ring, etc. However, with older rings you can end up with:
- Cracked Shanks
- Worn or Thinning Shanks
- Bent Shanks
- Sizing Concerns
I mentioned sizing concerns because this can affect the ENTIRE Ring (stones too). A poorly sized ring, can loosen stone if the prongs are not adjusted properly. Likewise, a ring that has been sized too many times may have compromised structural integrity.
Certainly, the stones are a focal point of any ring. When they need to be replaced it is not only expensive, but it is an emotional loss too. Therefore, you need to be aware that stone with the following issues are at a higher risk of loss:
- Chipped Stones
- Broken Stones
- Loose Stones