Essex, Florida (PressExposure) May 29, 2009 -- Some of the most popular collections of wedding rings today are those made from tungsten carbide. Other than gold, platinum, or white gold, tungsten carbide ring has become in demand primarily because of its affordability, hypoallergenic composition, long lasting luster, and more particularly its durability. Tungsten carbide is considered to be the most durable wedding ring compared to gold and platinum because it is highly resistant to scratches. So what is tungsten carbide?
What is Tungsten Carbide?
In its purest form, tungsten is a very hard and dense metal, with the highest melting point of all non-alloyed metal (metals with no other mixtures). It is used for heavy duty applications and high temperature applications such as on light bulbs and jet or rocket engine nozzles. However, tungsten alone could still be vulnerable to scratches and damage just like any other metal. It gains its extreme hardness by being combined with a carbon alloy, producing tungsten carbide, with hardness between 8.5 and 9.5 on the Mohs hardness scale.
The strength of tungsten carbide has made it widely used for decades in industrial applications. It is four times harder than titanium, twice as hard as steel and almost impossible to scratch. The resulting metal can be designed into a tungsten carbide ring which is both glamorous and durable enough to withstand everyday use. These kinds of wedding rings can only be damaged through extreme measures, such as abrasion from diamonds or being struck with a hammer.
Other popular features of Tungsten Carbide as Wedding Rings
Aside from its durability, tungsten carbide is also known for its hypoallergenic composition. Also, because of carbon, a tungsten carbide ring has a glossy black hue often buffed to a mirror like finish. Its glossy black hue and its bulky feature makes a tungsten wedding ring popular as a man's wedding ring. Tungsten carbide is more affordable than gold and platinum thus allowing marrying couples to spend less yet attain a quality better than that of gold.
Its advantage also serves as its disadvantage. Because of its durability, jewelers find it very difficult to repair once fractured. There was also a popular myth pertaining tungsten carbide ring in surgical operations. A common misconception held concerning tungsten carbide rings is they cannot be removed in the course of emergency medical treatment, requiring the finger to be removed instead. Emergency rooms and many full-service jewelry repair shops are equipped with jewelers' saws that can cut through tungsten carbide rings without injuring the hand or finger. An easier way to remove tungsten carbide rings is to use a tool such as vice grip style locking pliers.