A life well-lived involves wearing your jewelry – and good times can be bad news for rings, bracelets, necklaces, earrings and pins that are in less than stellar condition. When clasps let go or links break, fine jewelry gets lost. Problems with prongs means the diamonds and gemstones in your favorite rings can go flying when you wave to a friend – and you may not even notice the loss until hours, even days later!
Why Does Jewelry Break?
While diamonds are forever, the fine metals diamonds and other gemstones are set in are not. Like all natural materials, platinum, gold and silver are subject to the laws of physics. There are two ways that these metals deteriorate to the point where they break: erosion and metal fatigue.
Erosion occurs when a precious metal comes into contact with a substance harder than itself. Erosion is a huge issue in rings, because we all use our hands constantly. Countertops, stone or metal, and even other jewelry can contribute to erosion, gradually wearing away the metal in your jewelry until it becomes so thin it breaks.
You may be familiar with the term metal fatigue from airplanes. The airline industry has to vigilant inspect planes for sign of metal fatigue – the points where the metal on the plane has been flexed and bent so many times that it just gives up and fails completely. The same thing can happen with your jewelry. Metal fatigue is especially common on heavy bracelets and necklaces. You don’t have to wear the piece frequently for it to experience metal fatigue: any piece of fine jewelry that is stored by hanging, as is very common for necklaces, can develop metal fatigue with time.
There are other reasons jewelry breaks, including accidents and misadventure. When rings, bracelets or necklaces get caught on something, the tension of being tugged free can be too much for the object and breakage results.
How Do Diamonds and Gemstones Get Lost?
When we talk about lost diamonds and gemstones, often, the prong is the problem. Gemstones are set in place with metal prongs that are subject to erosion, metal fatigue, and other damage. There are other ways to set gemstones, and these methods aren’t foolproof either: when the setting fails, the gemstone is lost.
The Signs You Need Jewelry Repair
There is a quick, simple, and reliable way to ensure your jewelry is in good repair. Before you put a piece of jewelry on, take a moment and look it over carefully. You’re looking for any obvious damage, as well as places where the metal seems thin or weak. Gemstones should be set securely, and not moving independently of the piece of jewelry. Pay special attention to clasps: if they don’t close securely, the risk of losing your jewelry is high.
You want to be able to wear your jewelry with confidence. If you find yourself anxious or concerned about your jewelry when you wear it, you’re not really enjoying your jewelry ownership experience.
Fine Jewelry Repair in NYC
Jewelry repair addresses all the issues a piece of jewelry may have so you can wear it confidently once again. There are some important things to know about fine jewelry repair. The first is to choose an experienced master jeweler to do your repairs. Be selective – just like you wouldn’t take the Mercedes to any random mechanic, you don’t want to take your fine jewelry to a chain store for repairs.