Why is My Ring Cracked? Preventing Pinched Fingers
When your finger feels pinched, it’s probably because your ring has cracked.
My client Sarah called me two weeks ago. “My finger hurts so bad. It got pinched when my ring cracked. Why would it crack? It’s not even that worn down.” She asked.
“Thinness of a ring shank, that bottom part that goes around and under your finger, isn’t the only cause of cracking.” I answered.
“Really?” Sarah asked.
A Ring Sized too Large Cracks Easier
“Is your ring at all loose on your finger?” I asked her.
“Well I did lose some weight.”
“Well I better come see you.” So we made an appointment.
When I showed up she had lost weight.
“My mother gave me some personal trainer sessions. That was one good gift.” Sarah enthused.
“You weren’t insulted?”
“I asked for them.” She said.
“Ah.” I remembered a client whose husband had given her a gym membership she didn’t ask for and it was hurtful to her. I was relieved this was an asked for gift. Maybe I should ask for that. She looked great.
I checked her finger size and she’d gotten a half a size smaller.
“Was your ring loose before you lost the weight?”
“We’ll re-size it smaller and repair it at the break.” I told her.
“Sounds like a plan.” Sarah said.
“When you wear a ring that is too large, it gets a lot more stress as it’s not as protected by the skin and muscle of your finger.”
“Who knew?” Sarah asked.
“Actually, at first I didn’t’ know either. But I saw about four cracked rings my first year as a jeweler and they all needed to be sized smaller as well as repaired.” I explained.
Ring Back Too Thin? That Causes Cracking Too
The other reason a ring cracks and the more common cause is that your ring has become too thin at the back.
Most of the time a ring cracks at the bottom of your ring’s shank, in the middle, under your finger. This is because that spot gets the most stress.
Your ring gets more stress than normal at that spot, if it is too large for your finger. In the case of a too large ring it can crack even if it seems to have plenty of metal at the back.
What Do You Do for a Cracked Ring? Just Solder it Back Together?
If we just solder it at the break, and do nothing else, then it is destined to break again in the same place. The first thing I check with a cracked ring is the thickness of the shank. I mean its depth.
If it’s depth is thin I recommend a re-shanking.
Re-Shanking Strengthens the Structure of Your Ring
A re-shanking involves making your ring’s shank thicker and deeper to give it more strength.
Sometimes a ring is very thin in width. And its thinness creates a weakness problem. Whether it is designed to be thin or just wore thin rubbing next to another ring, I like to make it wider during the re-shanking process.
A widening of the shank can be done just on the lower part of a ring in case you like the thin design look up top.
Another Reason Your Ring Cracked
Sometimes you don’t know your own strength. Sometimes the world is an unyielding place. I’ve picked up cracked rings from people who left them on while lifting at the gym.
I recently picked up a cracked and bent ring from a traveller. She’d picked up a heavy suitcase with a thin hard plastic handle and ouch, her ring cracked.
Rings can be heroes too. I’ve picked up more than one ring that saved someone from a broken finger. I’d say avoid all doors, but then you couldn’t have a life.
Sarah’s Pinched Finger Fixed
We sized Sarah’s ring smaller, fixed it and soldered it to her wedding band which hadn’t cracked.
She’s wearing the set comfortably.
I hope you never get pinched by your ring, but if you do now you know why.
Your Personal Jeweler,
I never knew that a ring that is sized bigger than your finger is actually more likely to crack. As you mentioned int his article my ring is too big now because I have lost some weight. I might have to go get it resized soon so it doesn’t crack.
Many of my clients are surprised to hear that when ring is worn that is too large that it can stress the ring to the point of cracking. Once you’ve lost weight and your fingers are smaller I always recommend sizing a ring down. It is more comfortable to wear too when properly sized.
Your Personal Jeweler,
Hi Calla, I just found your blogs and I am loving them! They are so informative and I am learning so much. I have a friend who lost weight after getting engaged and her ring is now too big. She is using one of those spiral ring size adjusters. Will that help prevent weakness in the ring? Your blogs have also encouraged me to have a ring I inherited from my grandma checked out and resized so I can actually wear it. I don’t want to lose the amethyst stone because of bad prongs. I’ve had it for 10 years… Read more »
Hello Anne, Thank you for responding with a couple of juicy situations. For your friend, using the spiral thingie is not a good idea. This is a ring she wears daily. The sides of the ring shank, or part that goes from the top main design, down and around your finger, counts on the protection of the muscular part of the finger. When a ring fits properly and you pick something up or grab a wheelbarrow handle your ring is less vulnerable to bending or damage. That is because the finger itself takes the brunt of what you are grasping.… Read more »
I had my ring resized because it was too small. A year later it cracked right where they up sized it.
That is most unfortunate.
I hope the next repair goes better.
Your Personal Jeweler,
So I have a ring I was given when I was 18, I’m 33 now and it has a crack. I wanted to get it repaired and check if it needs to be resized. Do you have any suggestions of where to go?
Ideally, you’d go to a jeweler who designs and repairs jewelry as opposed to a store that just sells jewelry. Although someone who only sells other people’s designs is valuable, a jeweler, who understands how jewelry is made will better care for your sweet ring.