Rhodium Plating — Adding More Strength and Shine to Your Wedding Band

Rhodium is a highly expensive precious metal that belongs to the Platinum group. However, unlike Platinum and Palladium that are used for making jewelry, Rhodium is not suitable for the same purpose. It is a hard metal that is not easily malleable. This makes it difficult to give the required shape, and mold designs from it. Its availability is also a problem. However, it has a close link to jewelry made from other metals like white gold, silver and platinum. So, how does Rhodium breathe new life into your wedding band? Let us discuss in detail.

Using Rhodium in jewelry
Metals that are used for making jewelry should be hard and durable. The hardness ensures that the surface does not get scratched easily, and even if it happens, it can be buffed to regain the prior smoothness. Durability ensures long life of the item. The metal should retain its luster and shine for long period. White gold, an alloy of 24 carat gold and silver that are used for making wedding bands, is a soft metal that gets scratched easily, and its shine also tarnishes soon. However, due to reasons of affordability, white gold is widely used for ring making. Rhodium is needed for jewelry plating purposes. Wedding bands are plated with Rhodium to make them scratch resistant. According to experts at Meteorite Wedding Bands, this type of plating gives wedding bands a white shine and also retains the polish and shiny appearance for long duration.

Rhodium plating on Platinum
Although Platinum is a hard metal that can resists scratches, it is also sometimes plated with Rhodium. Despite Platinum having a white and shiny appearance, those who want to make it shinier, use Rhodium plating on it. Unlike white gold and silver, for which use of Rhodium plating is almost mandatory, plating Platinum with Rhodium is an optional choice.

Why use Rhodium
The special characteristics of Rhodium make it the best choice for plating soft metals that are used for making jewelry. Plating means applying a very thin coating of the metal on jewelry like rings and other items. Its high resistance to scratches, corrosion and tarnishing together with high ability to reflect light and durability makes it the best choice to provide added strength to weaker metals.

The process of Rhodium plating
Rhodium plating is done through a process known as electro plating. In this process, the Rhodium strip is connected to a positively charged electrode known as the anode while the wedding band is placed on the cathode or negatively charged electrode. Both pieces are immersed in a bath containing an electrolyte, which is a solution that allows flow of electric current trough it. When electric current is passed through the anode, the atoms of Rhodium are dissolved in the electrolyte. The dissolved Rhodium ions are reduced at the cathode, and deposited on the jewelry.

Plating is temporary
Rhodium plating is a temporary process that enhances the physical properties of other metals for some time. In order to retain the benefits of plating, the process has to be repeated at intervals as the coating tends to give away with time. How long the coating can last will depend on two factors — the thickness of coating and the nature of use of the coated item.  The coating on a wedding ring might last for a year or two as it is exposed to the toughest conditions as a result of constant wear. On the other hand, a pair of Rhodium plated earrings can last for many more years. Thinner coatings last shorter periods of time. Rhodium plating of jewelry is a service that most jewelers offer. Whenever you need re-coating to be done, they can help you out.

Plating thickness
Rhodium is highly expensive and the cost of coating would depend on the thickness that is desired. Since wedding and engagement rings are exposed to the maximum wear and tear, coating or plating thickness of 0.75 microns to 1.50 microns have to be considered.  For items like earrings that are not worn daily, plating thickness of 0.10 to 0.50 microns would suffice. However, plating of thickness higher than 2.0 microns can become very brittle. For those, who might not understand the unit of micron, it needs to be explained that the thickness of human hair is 100 microns. Therefore, it can be well understood how strong Rhodium is in imparting the required strength to other metals even when used in minute quantities.

Pay the right price
Rhodium coating is not cheap. Always stay alert to avoid the lure of cheap white gold and silver jewelry that might have been plated with the thinnest possible layer of Rhodium. This can turn out to be quite dangerous if you are using an alloy jewelry made from copper and nickel. The plating vanishes in no time and the skin is exposed to nickel that can be very harmful for your health as it causes allergies. If the whiteness and shine is the prime requirement in jewelry, then rings made from stainless steel tungsten and titanium are better options. These come without Rhodium plating, and you are free from the worries as explained earlier.

Conclusion — Precautions to be taken during re-plating
Accepting the fact that Rhodium re-plating is a necessity no matter how well it might be done, there are some precautions to be taken before re-plating.  It is quite obvious that the piece of jewelry especially wedding band is likely to have been scratched when it is sent for re-plating.  The scratches have to be removed by buffing before re-plating, or else it will be visible even after re-plating has been done. Some gemstones that react with sulfuric acid like topaz, peridot and enhanced rubies can get damaged in the process of re-plating by Rhodium.

About the author – Tim Hathaway is a journalist and a fashion enthusiast who is obsessed about jewelry. He is engaged in serious research to satiate his passion about the subject. He helps in spreading awareness about various aspects of jewelry use.  He is an advisor to companies like Meteorite Wedding Bands. When not writing, he spends time at his sea side home with his family.

Tungsten Rings – Setting Men’s Fashion on Fire

In the last few decades, there has been a rapid awareness among men that they too need to look good and fashionable. Nowadays, it is the norm for a man to take care of his appearance in each and every way he can think of; clothes, accessories, and grooming are no longer just for women. Apart from apparel and grooming, men have also given a lot of importance to accessories. However, just an expensive watch, a snazzy tie, or even a pair of glam shades is not enough today; there is a lot of accent on personal jewelry. Among the most-favored jewelry items is the tungsten ring because of its unmatched ability to lend a touch of real class to wearers looking out to make unique style statements.

The Rising Popularity of Tungsten Rings with Men
Even people with the slightest interest in jewelry would not have failed to notice the rapid rise in popularity of tungsten rings, particularly among men who are no longer satisfied with conventional metals and styles. Apart from having an appearance that is quite distinctive, the reasons for men taking to tungsten rings are many.

With an increasing number of men becoming averse to spending a huge amount of money on something that is essentially a style accessory, rings made out of precious metals like gold and platinum have become passé. Even for the wedding ring that is prized by both the bride and the groom, men are opting for tungsten rings because they cost far less but at the same time elevate their fashion quotient substantially. Something that looks good but doesn’t cost a lot has a universal appeal to men all over the world.

No Polishing or Maintenance Necessary
One of the most common complaints among men is that their rings made out of traditional metals lose their attractiveness after some time because of scratches and dents that they accumulate due to the typical lifestyle of men, who are not as careful with their accessories as women tend to be. As a result, gold or platinum rings, for example, have to be periodically sent over to the jewelers to be polished or reshaped for the removal of marks, dents, or dings. On the other hand, tungsten rings come with a luster and finish that stay intact even with the roughest of use because of the very nature of tungsten carbide that has a very high hardness index. Consequently, these rings are virtually scratchproof and dent proof.

A mere wash in soapy water is good enough to clean them of any accumulated dirt, and they are back again sparkling like new on your finger. For men who are careful about money and not so careful about what their fingers do, tungsten rings are a big blessing as there is none of the trouble and expense associated with regular maintenance that can be quite substantial over the lifetime. On top of that, they are assured of a ring that retains its good looks all through.

No Sacrificing Reliability for Style
It is commonly seen that stylish accessories tend to be mere fads that are transient. One of the principal reasons why this is so is because the material often is very flimsy and thus does not prove to be reliable. In tungsten rings, you have a wonderful situation where not only is the material very affordable, but due to its physical properties, extremely tough, durable, and reliable. With the exception of diamonds, tungsten is the toughest material known to mankind so it is ideal as an accessory for tough men in tougher conditions. If you are one of those men who couldn’t be bothered about taking off his gold or platinum ring to keep it protected from the environment then tungsten is the way to go because it is more than capable of taking everything that life can throw at it and more.

No Need to Break Out In a Rash for Fashion
Among the numerous good qualities of tungsten, one that can prove particularly useful to men with sensitive skin is that the material is hypoallergenic. This means that, however, sensitive your skin may be, you can wear a tungsten ring without any fear of having an allergy even with protracted use. This, therefore, means that you can continue to look your best all the time without having to worry about allergic reactions and skin rashes. There are some who worry that due to the extra toughness of the material these rings may be difficult to remove in case of an accident; however, this is not the real truth as tungsten rings can be very easily cut open without any hazard to the wearer. This makes these rings ideal even for those who are engaged in heavy manual work but want to look fashionable nevertheless.

Boost Your Style Quotient with Tungsten Rings
Tungsten rings look stunning even as a lone accessory but can add a whole lot of glamour when paired with conventional fashion accessories such as designer wristwatches or even a bracelet. If you prefer an understated look, you could even consider including a tie-pin or cufflinks. For the man who really cares how he looks, tungsten rings are the perfect accessory that can elevate his style quotient like nothing else. If you do not have much idea of the versatility of tungsten rings, you will be surprised to see them in a wide variety of stunning options. For the macho, apart from a minimalist band, there is a choice of a wide range of surface finishes and inlay work in exotic materials like meteorite and caribou antler, or if you so prefer, fine-grained wood, among others.

It can be a very hard choice deciding what tungsten ring to buy; there is a bewildering choice of avant-garde designs that go very well with fashionable outfits. You can get the best effect if you consider the visual weight of the ring so that it complements your physical appearance as well as your personality.

For the man who is truly fashionable and has a liberal attitude to life, there can be nothing better than a tungsten ring to discreetly flaunt his personality and contemporary outlook on life. Because of its toughness, it can be worn on all occasions and its innate minimalist appearance whispers your personality like perhaps nothing else.

Author bio: Jessica Simpson is the fashion correspondent of a leading lifestyle magazine. Jessica has been following the rapid rise of tungsten carbide rings as a fashion accessory for discerning men and women. An avid rock climber, Jessica has firsthand experience of how well-suited tungsten rings can be for the outdoor life.

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Diamond Candles – A Surprise Inside Every Candle {Ends 1/26}

I love surprises. Absolutely love them. Nothing makes me smile more than an unexpected surprise.

diamond candlesThat’s why I love Diamond Candles so much. Not only do these fabulous soy candles smell amazing, but each candle also contains a surprise!

Inside every Diamond Candle, there’s a ring! It might be worth $10, but it could be worth $100, $1,000, or even $5,000! Isn’t that awesome?!

I received a Gingerbread scented candle for my review.

I lit the candle, so anxious to find out what kind of ring was inside, and patiently waited.

It burned for a few hours the first day. The next day, I took the candle with me to our new house and lit it while Ashley and I painted. Even over the smell of the paint, there was a fresh gingerbread scent lingering in the air. I swear it smelled like someone was baking gingerbread cookies in the oven. Mmmmm.

ring from diamond candleAfter a few hours that second day, I checked again. Sure enough, there was the coveted little foil pouch. I was so excited! I extinguished the flame, grabbed a key, {the only thing I had on hand}, and pulled out the foil pouch. I quickly opened the package, and inside was a pretty little ring. Ashley immediately fell in love with it and decided it was her’s. I’m pretty sure it’s just a $10 ring, but it sure was fun waiting to see what surprise the candle held.

And I’m not done with the candle yet! There’s still lots more to burn, and I plan to use it until it’s gone. The candle smells so good, and I love how evenly and cleanly it burned.

I highly recommend Diamond Candles to any one who loves candles… or jewelry…. or both!

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Disclaimer: I received a Diamond Candle in exchange for my review. I was in no other way compensated for this post. The giveaway is sponsored by Diamond Candles.