questionstungsten rings are popular because?

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People think they are worth money ?

They should be nearly indestructable though.

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This is my take on it- They are attractive enough as a wedding band, and inexpensive enough that if you lose it you're not in the dog-house. If you work on your own car/house/yard, or have to remove your jewelry for your work it's nice to have one as an everyday band and save the fancy band for when you know you don't have to take it off.

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@combustiblekitty: someone just told me that they are less likely to cause allergic reactions?

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The Tungsten carbide rings also don't scratch, or it is rather very hard to do so. Because of this the downside is that they can't be resized. Also, I've seen a demonstration showing if it happens to get stuck (so stuck you can't butter your finger/use ice to get it off) you can use a vise clamp and it'll break off without hurting your finger - in other words, no need to call someone to cut it off for you...just my 2 cents

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@twerp02: Thanks, these are all good things to know. I guess my question was mostly because I don't see them as very attractive, but apparently they are practical.
Since they don't scratch, can you engrave something inside or is that just really hard to do?

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And just look, in the bottom right corner of my screen, I see Tungstenworld.com - how do it know?

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@prettywootprincess: Now that I have looked at the TungstenWorld.com site and seen some of the beveling and inlay and engraving, I think I like them too. Of course, I like it because you like it.

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They are okay, but I am a Tiffany Girl all the way. Only gold or Platinum will ever grace the hands of my ring fingers.

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Because Tanga has a metric f-ton of them?
My brother wears one now, after losing 2 very expensive nice wedding rings he decided to stick with a $20 tungsten one.

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@combustiblekitty: i scratched my white gold wedding ring in the pool on my wedding day. my wife bought me an expensive tungsten ring which i only wear out for special occasions, dates, etc. so i picked up a cheap tungsten ring from tanga to wear everyday in place of my white gold ring.

my reasoning is in-line with yours:
1) they're cheap to buy/replace
2) they're somewhat semi-durable (resistant to scratches)
3) i won't be crushed if i lose it or it gets damaged
4) if it has to be cut off, it's supposed to be fairly easy (see #3).

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@sand4me: I'd be very surprised if these inexpensive rings are pure Tungsten. Most of them use nickel as a binding agent and nickel allergies are one of the more common metal allergies. (I hear some men are just allergic to wedding rings, haha)

Even in the case of titanium - another wedding ring replacement metal nickel is often used, unless the company says otherwise. It's not a surgical implant, and even in that case the FDA considers them "pure" if it's contaminated with under 2% of some other metal.

Good quality tungsten or titanium is cheaper than platinum so for folks with metal allergies, you make a good point.

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@hobbit: Nice thing about Tiffany is that they polish all their gold & platinum for free :-)

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I see a lot more Titanium rings specials. I think this is because the sound of a Titanium ring is appealing to most males because it's not a "precious metal" like gold or silver...it's a "stronger metal" which to us (especially those that work with our hands) makes more sense...practical is more important then precious. I was gonna get one until I read that Titanium rings scratch easy. That wasn't what I wanted...even at only $9 a ring.

Then I read the Tungsten Carbide rings are virtually scratch proof and I was sold. True they cost about 2 to 3 times as much as the low priced Titanium rings but come on...for less then $30 you get a ring as nice looking and shiny as the Titanium rings are when they are new and they stay that way.

I got a TC ring a few weeks ago and have been very happy with it...plus I can play the "ring spin" game on just about any surface and not worry about scratching it. :)

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I wear a tungsten carbide wedding band. It's awesome! It has zero scratches, dents, marks; still looks brand new. I have even rubbed it against brick to try to damage it.

However, my wife spent $200 on it, and I would NOT call that inexpensive.

Overall- I love the band and can't imagine wearing anything else

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I also wear a tungsten carbide ring as my wedding band. Compared to other rings, it will never lose its luster. My ring will have the same shiny new look to it years down the road without ever having to take it in to get cleaned up.

It's also more dense which gives it a very nice heavier weight. (Something that I think most guys like)

To me, it is a "manly" ring. I don't know how I would feel with some of the more delicate rings. It just doesn't look right for some guys.

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I've had a TC wedding band for over 2 years now, it only cost like $60 online and looked identical to 1 at a local jeweler that went for like 10X as much. It's great! I don't baby it and it basically looks brand new. I only take it off when I'm doing something with my hands and I don't want to damage the other non-ring thing. Tungsten Carbide is actually used to do engraving.

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Where are people getting these rings for $30!!!!!!!!! That's crazy.

Is there a difference between the $200 from Kay Jewelers and these $20/30's?

Seriously!

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I haven't worn a wedding ring in years, because my 14k band won't fit any more. If I get a replacement, it will be titanium. Why? (1) I have a titanium watch, and I love the look. (2) They made these: out of titanium. I rest my case. ;-)

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@dsorgnzd: Wow! Really cool picture. Thanks. I have certainly learned a lot about these rings. At first, I just couldn't see why anyone would think they were all that attractive. Most of the ones I have seen look like someone whacked a ring off a pipe of some kind. However, I have now seen some really beautiful ones, and can see the attraction. Still, not for me. Thanks to everyone for their input.

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I have had a thing for this alloy since I was about 5-6 years old (I'm weird, and it's a long story) but tungsten-carbide is the hardest non-diamond substance known to man, IIRC it's harder than depleted uranium. It will not bend, break, or scratch unless you use something which can also scratch diamonds such as tungsten-carbide blades. It's used for drill-bits by oil companies. The only way that you can destroy one of these rings would be a sudden drop under the right circumstances will cause it to shatter, diamonds will shatter if dropped as well. It's so hard that it cannot survive sudden impacts because it has no give to transfer and absorb the kinetic energy which can cause it to shatter rather than dent or scratch like other metals will do.

Tungsten isn't popular, but tungsten-carbide is and they are very different metals.

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@hobbit: Ring fingers can have hands? You do a lot of writing for LOLCats, don't you?

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@redlohkrub: Oooo... Do not make fun of the hobbit. She will get you. Yez, ringz fingerz can has handz..

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@sand4me: funny I didn't even notice that. I guess I should explain @shrdlu already knows this. I have a 2 month old kitten, I guess he is 3 months old now and he helps me type, a lot. So I have been missing a lot of my typos.

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@hobbit: Wish I could blame my typing errors on something else, but they're just me, not paying attention.

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Tungsten is 71% heavier than lead and it has the highest melting point of all pure metals. The only element with a higher melting point is carbon. Pure tungsten can be easily machined but not so with carbide which is commonly used for cutting most of the toughest metal alloys.

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@user12345: If you're more interested in the actual science behind why this is true, take a look at this page: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dislocation

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@dissatisfiedcustomer: So what you're saying is we need to find carbon rings?

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Bought a Tungsten ring 8 years ago as a wedding band. They were $500 at the time. If these are the same, it would be the biggest price drop of any ring material I have ever seen. I wonder if these rings are composed or tungsten or coated. Tungsten coating is used in a lot of industrial applications.

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Speaking as a goldsmith, tungsten and alloyed tungsten bands are popular due to their relative inexpensiveness, durability, and look. My company sells tungsten carbide rings for $75 - $200 depending on size and style, where as similar dimensioned gold and white gold rings could cost $600 - $2,000. Particularly in the mid-west, men like to look more manly and tend to shy away from shiny metals that look delicate; TU has a darker color and often comes with duller finishes, like satin, Florentine, and brushed/sanded finishes that are harder to come by in gold. Finally, its hardness is far greater than that of gold, as it is nearly unbendable is highly scratch resistant.

Down sides are typically minimal especially considering initial costs. Alloying with TU is necessary because pure (i.e. 9999 parts per 10000) TU is extremely brittle and often has problems being machined and formed. I will finish this thought in a second comment, since they are so limited.

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I haven't done much looking into it, but nickel seems a poor alloy as it is also brittle, though its color may be desired as a part of other alloys. Sizing is usually impossible since there are no commercial solders and the smithing would be excessively dangerous and difficult (TU doesn't anneal very well and rounding the ring would have to be done at really hot temperatures, like 2500C+ I would imagine). Getting someone with the skill and knowledge of your particular alloy so they could weld, not solder, the TU after sizing operations would likely cost a great deal more than buying an identical patterned ring in a larger size. The only other downside that I can think of is that it isn't very accepting of alterations; gold and silver and platinum can be modified and added to, like having more stones or building up new design elements. TU, TI, ceramics and other alternative metal rings all have these problems.

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Tungsten's increasingly popularity stems from its unique properties - it durability, scratch resistance. The tungsten rings designed with faceted bring people new meaning of fashion jewelry. No supernumerary decor, but every faceted tungsten ring shows the aesthetic feeling with clever glorious of tangent plane,this special rings make us understand the simple beauty.
http://www.tungstenjewellry.com

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I think tungsten rings are gaining popularity because gold has now reached $1400 an ounce. That's 3x what it was a decade ago. People are now searching for something that looks similar, but isn't really a precious metal. Guys also like the fact that tungsten is maintenance free and permanently polished.
http://www.weddingringsforever.com

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Tungsten rings can keep shine for years. I love them!

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@jakewalczak: your wife overpaid, sorry.

she probably got it in a jewelry store? you can find tungsten carbide rings on Amazon regularly with no nickel for less than $30.