Attire & Accessories Forum

Help! Heirloom engagement ring broke!

My fiance proposed about a month ago with his grandmother's ring, and he had it resized before I even saw it. He took it to Ashcroft & Oak, and I was a little disappointed that he trusted a mall jeweler with such a precious job, but I didn't think much of it until my ring broke this weekend. Basically they made a small cut in the ring and rebonded it, and this is where the band broke. The cut was on the side of the ring and not centered - which now explains why my ring is almost always tilted to the side. I am going to try to get some sort of refund from A&O, then take the ring to a few local, credible jewelers to see what they have to say. I'm not sure if the structural integrity of the ring will be compromised if we just rebond it, so I'm wondering if I should just look into resetting the entire ring or having just the band repaired.

Re: Help! Heirloom engagement ring broke!

  • Maggie0829Maggie0829 Ravens & Bohs & Crabs & O's member
    Eighth Anniversary 10000 Comments 500 Love Its 25 Answers
    My fiance proposed about a month ago with his grandmother's ring, and he had it resized before I even saw it. He took it to Ashcroft & Oak, and I was a little disappointed that he trusted a mall jeweler with such a precious job, but I didn't think much of it until my ring broke this weekend. Basically they made a small cut in the ring and rebonded it, and this is where the band broke. The cut was on the side of the ring and not centered - which now explains why my ring is almost always tilted to the side. I am going to try to get some sort of refund from A&O, then take the ring to a few local, credible jewelers to see what they have to say. I'm not sure if the structural integrity of the ring will be compromised if we just rebond it, so I'm wondering if I should just look into resetting the entire ring or having just the band repaired.
    That is not the reason why it is tilted to the side.  Right now my e-ring is off to the side.  It is because you have a large portion of the weight on the top, center of your ring.  Gravity will do its thing by trying to bring that heavy portion down, thus causing your ring to spin slightly.  It happens, unless of course your ring is so tight it is cutting off your circulation.

    And how they resized the ring is how, I believe, any jeweler will resize the ring.  They have to make it smaller some how and that means cutting away some of the metal.  The bonding just didn't take.  I would talk to your FI and see what all the A&O jeweler said and if you don't want to use them then don't.  But just because they happen to be in a mall doesn't automatically make them crappy.

    OliveOilsMomemmaaa
  • lovesclimbinglovesclimbing Alaska member
    Seventh Anniversary 2500 Comments 500 Love Its First Answer
    My fiance proposed about a month ago with his grandmother's ring, and he had it resized before I even saw it. He took it to Ashcroft & Oak, and I was a little disappointed that he trusted a mall jeweler with such a precious job, but I didn't think much of it until my ring broke this weekend. Basically they made a small cut in the ring and rebonded it, and this is where the band broke. The cut was on the side of the ring and not centered - which now explains why my ring is almost always tilted to the side. I am going to try to get some sort of refund from A&O, then take the ring to a few local, credible jewelers to see what they have to say. I'm not sure if the structural integrity of the ring will be compromised if we just rebond it, so I'm wondering if I should just look into resetting the entire ring or having just the band repaired.
    That is not the reason why it is tilted to the side.  Right now my e-ring is off to the side.  It is because you have a large portion of the weight on the top, center of your ring.  Gravity will do its thing by trying to bring that heavy portion down, thus causing your ring to spin slightly.  It happens, unless of course your ring is so tight it is cutting off your circulation.

    And how they resized the ring is how, I believe, any jeweler will resize the ring.  They have to make it smaller some how and that means cutting away some of the metal.  The bonding just didn't take.  I would talk to your FI and see what all the A&O jeweler said and if you don't want to use them then don't.  But just because they happen to be in a mall doesn't automatically make them crappy.
    ----------------------------------------boxes-----------------------------------

    Does that depend on the type of ring?  When we got ours, H's was a bit big, but the jeweler said it would be easy to resize. They would put it in a clamp of some sort and constrict it so it would shrink down all over and the metal would just get slightly thicker all over.  

    Maybe that only applies to bands?

  • OliveOilsMomOliveOilsMom South Jersey member
    Ninth Anniversary 5000 Comments 500 Love Its 5 Answers

    The way your ring was resized is the exact same way my ring had to be resized.  When we picked out the right, I could barely get it to my knuckle.  So when the jeweler resized it, he cut it, pried it apart and added the new metal to make it the correct size.

    To me, part of the problem looks like there was not enough metal put on the underside.  The band just looks really thin there and probably wouldn't take too much to get it to break.

    I also think it was unfair to just discount a jeweler because they were in the mall.  The jeweler my H went to he has been going to forever.  This jeweler even made a ring for my H from scratch and worked closely with H to get the design just right.  However, if you went to his store, you wouldn't think much of it.  When I first walked in, I couldn't believe that this was the place where H wanted to get the e-ring.  He didn't even have any e-rings in the store.  He had me look through books and show him what I liked.  He then went to his suppliers and brought back samples for me to see.  But my experience with them has been so great, my sister and a co-worker both went there based off my recommendation that the jeweler knows what he is talking about. 

    If you are scared to bring your ring back there, then try to find a recommendation for a different jeweler.  Ask family, co-workers, or friends for recommendations.

  • Maggie0829Maggie0829 Ravens & Bohs & Crabs & O's member
    Eighth Anniversary 10000 Comments 500 Love Its 25 Answers
    My fiance proposed about a month ago with his grandmother's ring, and he had it resized before I even saw it. He took it to Ashcroft & Oak, and I was a little disappointed that he trusted a mall jeweler with such a precious job, but I didn't think much of it until my ring broke this weekend. Basically they made a small cut in the ring and rebonded it, and this is where the band broke. The cut was on the side of the ring and not centered - which now explains why my ring is almost always tilted to the side. I am going to try to get some sort of refund from A&O, then take the ring to a few local, credible jewelers to see what they have to say. I'm not sure if the structural integrity of the ring will be compromised if we just rebond it, so I'm wondering if I should just look into resetting the entire ring or having just the band repaired.
    That is not the reason why it is tilted to the side.  Right now my e-ring is off to the side.  It is because you have a large portion of the weight on the top, center of your ring.  Gravity will do its thing by trying to bring that heavy portion down, thus causing your ring to spin slightly.  It happens, unless of course your ring is so tight it is cutting off your circulation.

    And how they resized the ring is how, I believe, any jeweler will resize the ring.  They have to make it smaller some how and that means cutting away some of the metal.  The bonding just didn't take.  I would talk to your FI and see what all the A&O jeweler said and if you don't want to use them then don't.  But just because they happen to be in a mall doesn't automatically make them crappy.
    ----------------------------------------boxes-----------------------------------

    Does that depend on the type of ring?  When we got ours, H's was a bit big, but the jeweler said it would be easy to resize. They would put it in a clamp of some sort and constrict it so it would shrink down all over and the metal would just get slightly thicker all over.  

    Maybe that only applies to bands?
    That would concern me when it comes to settings and the stones in those settings.  But I could see this working with an all metal band though.

  • blabla89blabla89 Atlanta member
    Sixth Anniversary 2500 Comments 500 Love Its Name Dropper
    From the pictures, it looks like the shank of the ring has been worn thin from years of wear. I have my grandma's ring and it was like that. Getting it reshanked was quick and only cost about $300 and when it was finished it was sized for me.

    I recommend taking it to a reputable jeweler who does all their work on site (I don't know enough about Ashcroft & Oak to comment) and ask what they suggest, and if having a new shank made would fix it. I do not recommend taking heirloom jewelry to a jeweler or store that sends it off-site for repairs.
    Wedding Countdown Ticker



  • edited May 2015
    I work in a jewelry store where we have an onsite jeweler and I will tell you what he would tell anyone.
    The ring probably needs to be reshanked but if you are putting a band on it you may be able to get away with spot welding it and having the bands welding to the engagement ring, this will give it a bit more thickness for the time being. Its defiantly not a permanent solution especially if the band is as old as the engagement ring.
    Given the age of the ring I would also have all of the prongs checked, and if it is as brown as it looks in the pictures its probably needs to be replated. 
    Other than that I think its beautiful and I wouldn't have it reset unless you really want to. :)
    CMGragain
  • I agree that it needs a new shank.  The ring has a lot of wear, and the original shank has thinned down over the years.  I had my ring re-shanked after 25 years, and I have had no problem with it.  I wear it 24/7.
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  • cgss11cgss11 member
    250 Love Its 100 Comments Name Dropper First Anniversary
    Ditto the shank being thin. I also have an old ring, and I recently had it resized. They were very hesitant to do it, and said it would probably be the last time it could be sized, because of the state the shank was in. I had lost considerable weight though, and really wanted to be able to wear the ring at the wedding so I signed off on the doing it with their hesitations. I know though that I will most likely need the shank redone soon. 
  • pennydlpennydl member
    Third Anniversary 10 Comments 5 Love Its
    I agree with everyone else. My e-ring was my Grandmother's as well and the shank was very thin. When I had it resized they added some gold to the shank to make it a little thicker. I haven't had any problems.
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