Prong Failure Causes Lost Diamonds
The number one cause for people losing diamonds and gemstones from their rings and other jewelry is prong failure. Just last week we received a ring from a client in Colorado that they had purchased from us just a little over a year ago. It is one of the very popular halo designs with a round diamond set at center with 4 prongs. His wife had caught one of the prongs on something and bent it causing the center diamond to fall out and be lost.
There are a number of reasons that can cause prong failure. Most prongs are made of either gold, platinum or silver. When a head or ring is cast there can be impurities introduced into the metal that will cause porosity which is porousness inside of the prong. This porousness represents a weak spot that is more susceptible to breaking.
Another more common reason for prong failure is wear. The very nature of the noble metals makes them usable for jewelry applications. They are malleable so they can be bent and can be cut, worked and trimmed by a jeweler. This property also makes them susceptible to wearing down over long periods of use. When prongs get very thin they become weak and can break very easily.
Another thing that happens frequently is that a prong can be caught on something and bend thereby exposing the edge of the diamond and not holding it in place. This happens more frequently in a setting with four prongs than six or more prongs.
Prong failure is a very common occurrence and in most cases is not due to negligence or poor workmanship. At Suncoast we are always responsible for any loss that should occur due to a defect but are not responsible for a loss that happens due to normal wear or a prong being pulled or bent by a client.
The best way to make sure that your diamonds and gemstones are safe and secure is to have them checked regularly to make sure they are in good shape and to make sure they are appraised and insured. It is our policy to clean jewelry and check prongs for our clients at no charge.
No time better than the present to have your jewelry checked for any wear that could result in a loss. Give us a call or just stop by today.