There’s more to mens diamond wedding rings than meets the eye. While we all want our ring to look good, let’s take a look at the elements or ‘make up’ of a ring including metals and diamonds used and you’ll quickly realize that you’ll buy better after reading this article.
While pure gold gives a beautiful luster, it is harder than tin but softer than pure silver and therefore makes it practically useless for jewelry applications in its pure form and is the reason why other metals such as nickel, copper, silver or zinc are added to increase hardness, toughness and color variation.
While many elements or alloys can be mixed with gold, only a select group of metals are added to maintain appropriate working malleability and metal color control for jewelry applications while maintaining practicable wear ability. More than one alloy can be mixed together with the gold and adjusting the proportions or percentages of each result in the array of colors available in mens diamond wedding rings.
For example, 18 karat rose gold which has warm rich red copper tones contains 25% copper while 14 karat white gold has distinguishing gray tones and contains 10 parts white metal, either nickel or palladium. While the final color will depend on ratios and elements used, basically the addition of copper will cause reddening, silver will add green colorations, zinc will bleach and both nickel and palladium will whiten.
The number of Karats of gold in mens diamond wedding rings refers to the percentage of gold in the mix of metal or alloys used to make that ring. A 24 karat ring would be 100 percent gold. An 18 karat gold ring is 18 parts gold and 6 parts of alloy or 75% pure gold and likewise, 14 karat gold is 14 parts gold or 58.5% pure gold.
One thing that should be noted is that Gold standards vary around the world in relation to Karated gold. 18 karat gold is the standard for European jewelry and while gold can be sold in 18, 14, and 10 karats in the United States, 14 karats is the standard for American jewelry.
Another point that should be noted is that a Karat (not Carat) refers to the amount of gold in a particular item. Conversely, a Carat is a unit of weight for gemstones whereby one carat equals 1/5 of a gram, or 200 milligrams. It means therefore that a one carat sapphire will be smaller than a one carat diamond because sapphire is denser and hence heavier in weight for its size.
And when it comes to Platinum gold & White gold…, Platinum, a precious metal is extremely dense, heavier than gold or silver and costs more than gold. Platinum is highly durable, does not wear or tarnish like other metals and is usually mixed with other similar metals such as iridium, palladium, ruthenium, rhodium and osmium. Unlike white gold which may yellow or tarnish and require to be plated with rhodium every few years to maintain its whiteness, Platinum maintains its white appearance and will bring back its luster with a quick soak in a mild solution of soap and warm water followed by a gentle rub with a soft bristled brush.
When it comes to the diamond or diamonds used in mens diamond wedding rings, their value is based on four criteria or the Four C’s of diamond valuation being Cut, Colour, Clarity and Carat. Many experts name color as the number one consideration with the whitest white being most valuable. The clarity and color of diamonds are graded by using a system or scale however beware, because grading systems or the scales that are used are not uniform and can differ slightly so make sure you know how a particular scale and system grades the color or clarity of the diamond you’re considering. Diamond colors are given an alphabetic letter to identify its quality beginning with “D” for colorless and move downwards to “Z” with stones that have traces of color and visible shadings.
Subtle color differences are near impossible to determine with an untrained eye and gemologists often place stones on a white background next to another diamond that has been previously graded to grade another stone. The Diamond Color Scale is D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z Fancy Colors – Colorless Near Colorless Faint Yellow Very Light Yellow Light Yellow
A diamond’s ability to reflect and refract light is dependent on its whiteness. When white light enters the diamond, part of the ray is reflected back to the observer’s eye, but the rest of the light penetrates the stone. Refraction occurs when the ray is deflected toward the center of the stone and then bounced back to the surface. The whiter the color the greater the refraction and better the stone.
When it comes to Diamond Clarity, a “flawless” diamond can only be so described if it has no visible surface or internal imperfections when viewed under 10-power magnification. Flaws in a diamond can seriously affect the stone’s potential durability and affect the transparency and brilliance of the stone.