About Tungsten

How Tungsten Metal Becomes Tungsten Jewelry

Tungsten is a hard and dense metal, with a high melting point; science and geology buffs might recognize it as W on the periodic table of elements. However, when it is combined with carbon alloy, it transforms into tungsten carbide (WC): one of the coolest metals on the jewelry market. Because this is relatively new metal to be used in jewelry, some common misspelling of "tungsten" are tungston, tungstan, tungstein and tungstin. The proper composition of tungsten carbide to have in a wedding ring is about 85% and the rest nickel, which is the purity level of all tungsten carbide rings carried by us. This optimal purity level gives the metal the most scratch resistant. Any more, the ring will become too brittle and any less, the metal will become too soft.

Our rings' unique formula of tungsten carbide allows our tungsten rings to be both visually stunning and incredibly durable for years of everyday use. Washing dishes? Working in the yard? You don't need to remove your tungsten ring to protect its finish or because it's uncomfortable. Tungsten carbide is four times harder than titanium and twice as hard as steel, so tungsten jewelry is virtually scratch-proof. And because our tungsten rings and tungsten wedding bands are comfort-fit, you won't ever have a reason to take it off.

Tungsten vs. Titanium

Many people think Tungsten and Titanium are very similar metals, but in reality they are actually very different. If you were to hold a tungsten ring and a titanium ring in your hands, the first thing you would notice is the weight. Titanium is very light weight. It feels as if the ring were made of plastic, many people do not believe they are holding a metal object. Tungsten, on the other hand, is a very dense metal. It feels as if you are holding a gold ring. Many people prefer the weight and heft of tungsten because they feel that their wedding ring should be something strong and heavy feeling. After all, one of the reasons people cherish platinum is because it also has a heavy weight. A difference between the metals that is not noticeable immediately is that tungsten is very hard, so it is very difficult for a tungsten ring to get scratched. In fact it is the hardest metal on earth, only non-metals such as diamonds are harder than tungsten. Titanium is about 4 times less hard than tungsten. It is quite easy to scratch a titanium ring. One drawback of tungsten being so hard, is the metal does not bend. If enough force is applied the ring can crack or break, whereas titanium will bend out of shape. This is why we offer a lifetime warranty on our tungsten rings if breakage should occur.

Why is "Tungsten" and "Tungsten Carbide" used throughout your site?

All of the tungsten rings on our website are made of 85% pure tungsten carbide. We do not carry rings made of 100% pure tungsten, as they would basically turn to powder without carbon to alloy. Throughout our website we use the words tungsten and tungsten carbide interchangeably. This is because often times having to say "tungsten carbide wedding bands" is a bit of a mouth full and we, as well as other retailers, just write "tungsten" when we mean "tungsten carbide". It is like saying "Gas" instead of "Gasoline".

Should I worry about a tungsten carbide allergic reaction?

Nope. All of our tungsten jewelry is made with nickel-binder alloy, which is superior to cobalt-binder alloy. Nickel-binder alloy is hypoallergenic, chemically inert and does not oxidize, cause rashes, or irritate the skin. Cobalt-binder alloy, on the other hand, can cause a tungsten carbide allergic reaction and can oxidize when the cobalt binds with you skin's natural oils. Virtually all people who are allergic to the nickel in white gold rings, are not allergic to the nickel in tungsten because there is such a small amount. However, in rare cases of super sensitive people, there may be an allergic reaction. Not to worry if you happen to be one of those few people. In most cases, we can make the ring in another metal to get around your allergy. We also offer a return policy that gives you 100% of your money back if it is within 30 days.

Is Tungsten Never Supposed to Scratch?

Tungsten carbide is the hardest and most scratch resistant or wear resistant metal known to man. This means it will resist scratching better than any other metal. This does not mean it is scratch proof, i.e. it cannot be scratched. Tungsten can be scratched by non metals, such as diamonds, sapphires and other crystals found in rocks. This is how tungsten rings are able to be machined and shaped into rings. If it cannot be scratched at all, then that would mean it can never be made into jewelry with different designs and finishes. Even the hardest material on earth, diamonds, can be scratched. If it could not be, then it would be impossible to cut and polish diamonds into the beautiful shapes that we see at the jewelry store.

It is normal to see small scratches on a tungsten ring over time, especially if the person wearing the ring is constantly working with their hands or comes in contact with rocks, construction materials, or any hard non-metallic materials. Tungsten does withstand scratching better than any other metal. This means if there is some amount of scratching on a tungsten ring, it would be 10 times worse if the ring were a gold ring. Every material on Earth has different physical properties that make it suitable for some things and not suitable for others. Consumers should take the time to get past the hype and become educated about the products they want to purchase. This will reduce the unpleasant surprises that come from lack of knowledge.

Can Tungsten Rings Be Cut off In Case of Emergency?

While tungsten rings cannot be cut off, they can be safely removed in case of an emergency. The most common method of removing tungsten rings from your finger is by using a pair of vice grips. The vice grips apply enough pressure that the tungsten ring fractures safely.

A full video tutorial on the proper removal of tungsten rings can be found here

Any ring can be be removed in an emergency. It does not matter what metal the ring is made of. Most rings will have to be cut off, but extremely hard materials like tungsten carbide and ceramic rings will need to be "cracked off" rather than cut off. This might sound scarier than cutting off a ring, but it is actually faster and easier to do than cutting off a ring.

To remove your ring, you will need a vice grip wrench or any kind of locking pliers. Most emergency personnel have this common tool, as well as your local hospital emergency rooms. You can call your local hospital to check ahead of time, and ask if they have a vice grip wrench or locking pliers that can crack a tungsten ring off because they cannot be cut off.

Once you have a vice grip wrench, simply close the wrench and adjust the jaw of the wrench until it clamps down on the outside of the tungsten ring. Next, release the vice grip and turn the screw in the handle a half turn to tighten the vice grip just a tiny amount. Then clamp down on the outside of the ring again. This time the vice grip will apply more pressure because it is tighter. If it does not crack, then release the vice grip wrench and tighten the screw another half turn. Then try clamping down the outside of the ring once again. Keep repeating this step and until the ring cracks.

Once cracked we advise people not to slide the ring up and down their finger. If your tungsten carbide ring has a precious metal inlay then the inlay portion of the band may be cut away. This entire removal process should take about 30 seconds to complete.

Size Chart

The following ring size guide is perfect for women or for men looking to purchase a ring online, that are unsure of their exact size. If you have an existing ring that is a comfortable fit on your finger and doesn't slip off your knuckle, then that would be perfect to find your ring size. Download our ring size chart here and print it out at 100%.