HOW THE HECK DO YOU SIZE A RING?
A new ring that you thought fit,
an old ring that's gradually become tighter until it's left an
indentation, a ring you inherited. For whatever reason you need to get
your ring sized.
Q: My ring only needs to go up a little bit, can you stretch it?
A: Yes, you can stretch a ring but you probably don't want to.
Stretching a ring, like anything, can be done the right way or the
wrong way. The right way, in our opinion, is a two step process: 1.
ONLY plain bands can be stretched. 2. Quite literally, baby steps. A
careful process of annealing the metal after baby steps of stretching.
The inherent problem with stretching is that the ring can crack.
Likewise, a plain band can be compressed in a similar annealing
process. It's risky stretching a ring, and, properly done, can take as
much time as properly sizing a ring.
Q: OK, so how do you "correctly" size a ring?
A: Simply done (a ring with a plain band on the back) we cut the ring shank in the back. Going
up in size we carefully cut a little piece of metal that we then shape
and finish both of those teeny tiny ends of that little piece of metal,
sandpaper the open ends of the cut ring shank to match the insert,
protect the metals with firecoat, prepare and place the solder, heat it
up, flow the solder, clean it up, file it, sand it, polish it with two
different compounds, clean the ring and VOILA! The ring is sized and, under most conditions, you can't tell where the ring was altered.
Q: My ring needs to be sized down, so will I get the metal that's cut out?
A: Yes, you can, but it will be
smaller than you think, and, the cost of sizing takes into account the
bit of gold, so returning the piece will result in the sizing cost more.
Sizing half a size means cutting, sanding and soldering everything
Q: Is sizing a white gold ring the same as sizing a yellow gold ring?
A: Just about. The process is the same, however a problem
can arise if the ring has been rhodium plated. Then you've got a
complication that is also more expensive. Once the ring is sized and
the polishing is completed, the rhodium around the site is gone and that
usually means that the exposed base metal has a bit of a yellow cast to
it. Newer white gold alloys are not as problematic as older alloys.
The only fix is to plate the ring and not every shop does rhodium
plating, so be prepared. It's a little bit of trouble but your ring is