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Platinum vs Tungsten Carbide for wedding bands

StoopidMonkey

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Mar 11, 2011
Messages
127
Hi everybody,

I was wondering if I can get your input on something that's been bouncing around my head for the past few days. I was at a local maul shop browsing their inventory for kicks, and I really found myself drawn to their selection of tungsten carbide wedding bands. It's hard to find any local B&M shop with any platinum rings and "modern metal" rings have flooded the marketplace. While my initial reaction was to feel like these rings were somehow inferior to rings made from noble metals, tungsten carbide rings are intriguing me with their platinum-like appearance (albeit darker), high scratch resistance, substantial weight, and variety of design options. I found myself wondering, just why is it that I'm set on spending $2000 on a platinum wedding band when TC bands can be had for about $200? Is it all about the purely subjective feeling of owning a rare noble metal, or is platinum actually a preferable metal for this kind of jewelry for objective reasons? Let me know what you think!

EDIT: BTW I am aware TC rings can't be sized but many stores' warranty plans cover the exchange of rings for new ones of a different size if need be. It wouldn't be the same ring I'd be married with so I know to keep that in mind.
 

Asscherhalo_lover

Ideal_Rock
Trade
Joined
Aug 16, 2007
Messages
4,880
My husband went the route of a tungsten ring for daily wear since it does not scratch. We bought his on ebay from heavy crown for $35. No need to spend $200 on one. He loves the weight of it and prefers the look of the darker metal.
 

StoopidMonkey

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Mar 11, 2011
Messages
127
Such a strange dynamic that would make, to spend 200x as much on an engagement ring than on my own wedding band. Really makes you wonder about jewelry and "worth" and all the emotional connotations that go along with it.
 

MustangGal

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Jun 18, 2004
Messages
2,029
I have a tungsten band I wear for rough days, like camping, yard work, water park, etc. and I love it. While we did get my DH a gold and diamond band, he wears it about once a year and instead wears a titanium band that never comes off his finger. I get the point above that a woman's e-ring costs way more than a $35 tungsten band, but most men aren't into jewelry to begin with, and can also be much rougher with their hands. My DH works outdoors, and his hobby is fixing up cars. A platinum or gold band would have been a sorry sight after 10 years of wear in situations like that. I'm trying to convince him he needs a new Scott Kay Cobalt band (about $300) for our 10th anniversary next month, and he tells me not to bother :rolleyes:
 

kindred

Brilliant_Rock
Premium
Joined
Dec 3, 2008
Messages
945
We bought my fiance an inexpensive ($50) tungsten ring. He is really happy with it and figures he can just buy a new one in the future if his ring size changes.
 

miwa

Rough_Rock
Joined
Feb 24, 2010
Messages
25
I wear a tungsten as well. Firstly, after all the spending spree from everything (wedding, etc), I felt like I didn't need another big expense and secondly, I wanted something that'll survive anything --much like what mustangal said. Car work, outdoor stuff, grit, grime.
 

diamondseeker2006

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Jan 11, 2006
Messages
56,139
My son-in-law got his wedding band from Tungsten World. They do exchange for free if your size ever changes. It looks great and is amazingly scratch resistant!
 

StoopidMonkey

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Mar 11, 2011
Messages
127
Wow, I have to say I'm surprised that nobody's jumped in saying "Forget that stuff, go platinum all the way!" Makes me wonder if platinum was as inexpensive as tungsten carbide whether anybody would choose it. Still, the ability to have it resized if needed holds a lot of sway. When I lost my first wedding band from a previous marriage and got a replacement, it did suck knowing it wasn't the original.
 

oldminer

Ideal_Rock
Trade
Joined
Sep 3, 2000
Messages
6,449
Forget that stuff, either go all the way or don't wear a ring!!!! :lickout: :loopy: :tongue: :snore:

This is a matter of romance, tradition and an advanced celebration of longevity. These days, the modern metals have surely given people wonderful alternatives. We are so modern in so many respects, how can you fight what looks like progress. Something highly attractive, very durable, and less costly. Somebody is going to figure out how to make a halo ring, or a solitaire style in one of these new metals and before you know it, there will be many alternatives to gold, platinum and silver in lady's engagement ring jewelry, too. Jewelers are driven to sell consumers what consumers have decided they wish to buy. Fashion leaders influence consumers attitudes. Whatever the consumer wants will dictate the process in the long run and there are no real reasons behind any particular choice of metal other than the practical reasons of these metals being up to the task of being properly formed, holding stones securely and reasonably durable in finish. We have yet to solve the problem of re-sizing many of the exotic metals when they are made into rings.
 

MustangGal

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Jun 18, 2004
Messages
2,029
StoopidMonkey|1313501986|2991844 said:
Wow, I have to say I'm surprised that nobody's jumped in saying "Forget that stuff, go platinum all the way!" Makes me wonder if platinum was as inexpensive as tungsten carbide whether anybody would choose it. Still, the ability to have it resized if needed holds a lot of sway. When I lost my first wedding band from a previous marriage and got a replacement, it did suck knowing it wasn't the original.
Have you seen the Cobalt ones? http://www.scottkay.com/skcobalt/ they claim they can size them, yet are still more durable than regular metals. This is what I want to get DH this time around. They are a little more pricey then tungsten, but still way less than gold.
 

Gypsy

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Aug 8, 2005
Messages
40,198
My husband's original wedding band is a Palladium Scott Kay. The scratches were driving him batty (he's not a 'patina' guy) so I got him a Tungsten. He loves it and gets so many compliments on it.

They do have "emergency" Tungsten kits. If you are in a bad situation and need the ring OFF there are kits that will break the ring. Yes the ring gets destroyed, but you keep your finger.

We paid 20 bucks for his. At that price I can replace them every year. The Palladium ring (which sits in a box) was 1100 three years ago. I totally think the Tungsten is the way to go.
 

Mrsacornblue

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Mar 23, 2011
Messages
229
I have both...a platinum eternity band and a plain band to wear with my e-ring and a tungsten ring to wear on it's own. I wouldn't mix platinum and tungsten...I won't wear my tungsten against my platinum e-ring. However, for my job as a nurse, the tungsten has held up incredibly well, hasn't scratched and is very durable for the $20 investment. If I lose it, it's easily replaceable. I think it's a matter of lifestyle and preference rather than cost. For me, both work and have different uses.
 

StoopidMonkey

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Mar 11, 2011
Messages
127
Does anybody know of any color comparison charts that show the difference in color/sheen between platinum, tungsten carbode, or even white tungsten carbide? I tried looking but couldn't find much.
 

should i be here

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Dec 30, 2010
Messages
136
Tungsten carbide sounded perfect for my fiance since it doesn't scratch (the scratching on my own platinum ring drives me crazy), but I ordered one from etsy ($20!) and didn't know that it was such a dark metal. Tungsten is gunmetal colored, I see that some companies sell "white tungsten" as well, which I've never seen.

Also, even the jeweler (PS Vendor) said not to bother with anything too expensive for a guy - they lose these pretty often. And they don't seem to care what it's made of anyway.

I ended up ordering him a classic 14k white gold band instead.
 

CatrinaKitty

Rough_Rock
Joined
Jun 25, 2012
Messages
12
The biggest concern for most people is the fact that tungsten carbide rings can shatter if they drop from a high enough distance, and platinum scratches much easier. I guess it depends on how careful you are with your ring and your own personal taste in regards to shine and weight. There's a great article by Tungsten World about everything there is to know about tungsten carbide rings. They also have other articles comparing tungsten to other precious/modern metals, such as cobalt and titanium.
 

baby monster

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Jul 2, 2007
Messages
3,631
Oldminer|1313504174|2991868 said:
Forget that stuff, either go all the way or don't wear a ring!!!! :lickout: :loopy: :tongue: :snore:

This is a matter of romance, tradition and an advanced celebration of longevity. These days, the modern metals have surely given people wonderful alternatives. We are so modern in so many respects, how can you fight what looks like progress. Something highly attractive, very durable, and less costly. Somebody is going to figure out how to make a halo ring, or a solitaire style in one of these new metals and before you know it, there will be many alternatives to gold, platinum and silver in lady's engagement ring jewelry, too. Jewelers are driven to sell consumers what consumers have decided they wish to buy. Fashion leaders influence consumers attitudes. Whatever the consumer wants will dictate the process in the long run and there are no real reasons behind any particular choice of metal other than the practical reasons of these metals being up to the task of being properly formed, holding stones securely and reasonably durable in finish. We have yet to solve the problem of re-sizing many of the exotic metals when they are made into rings.
Interesting thought there. I feel no particular attachment to the metal my diamonds are set in. Durability, color and cost are typically the biggest concern. Why aren't settings made from tungsten? It would certainly bring down the costs given the run up in price of gold and platinum.
 
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