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Bent Ring? Here’s What to Do with a Warped Shank

Written by Anna Currell
October 10, 2023

You reach for your favorite ring only to find that it’s no longer perfectly round. Instead, it’s all bent out of shape, and now it doesn’t fit your finger the way it once did. A bent ring is a pretty common occurrence that happens when it is hit on hard surfaces or snagged on sharp objects. While it’s disappointing to see, don’t stress. You may be able to repair a bent ring at home. In this article, we’ll teach you some simple do-it-yourself methods to try and unbend your ring. Ready to give it a shot? 

Determine the Type of Bend

The first step is to look closely at the bent ring and determine what type of bend it has. Take a close look at the shank, which is the metal part of the ring that encircles your finger. It should be a perfect circle, but if it’s warped it could look like the following:

  • Oval: This is the most common type of bend, usually seen in softer metals like gold. This is when the entire band is misshapen into an oval instead of a circle.
  • Wavy: Often seen in harder metals like platinum, sections of the band get a wave-like bend or a crumpled look. 
  • Flattened: This is when one section of the ring band becomes flattened or slightly wider. The rest of the ring is still round until it meets this straight line section. 

Knowing the bend type will help determine the best approach. Take a look at your ring and see which type of bend most closely matches your situation. 

bent-ring

Methods to Reshape Your Bent Ring at Home

For slight oval bends in softer metals, you can try rolling the ring back into shape using just your fingers. Gently manipulate and massage the ring to regain its round form. Pliers with plastic tips can also help grip and shape without scratching. This is the best case scenario for rings that are just slightly bent.

For wavy type bends, a ring mandrel can help roll and shape the ring back to round. A mandrel is a cone-shaped metal tool often used in jewelry making. Slowly roll and press the wavy sections against the mandrel until they straighten out and the shank starts to look round again.

In some cases, you can tap a ring band with a flattened section back into shape using a rounded jeweler’s hammer against a ring mandrel. Place the flattened part of the ring over the mandrel and gently tap only on that section to push it back out. This can be a tricky process, so be sure to be extra careful — and don’t let your fingers get in the way of the hammer!

When to See a Jeweler

While many slightly bent rings can be fixed at home through careful DIY methods, some more extreme or delicate cases do require professional help. Here are some instances where you should leave your ring repair to the pros:

  • Rings with very delicate bands that are thin or filigreed. Home repair could cause further damage or even breakage that is more difficult to repair.
  • Rings that are antique or vintage. Their older metals and settings are often delicate and fragile, requiring professional care.
  • Highly valuable rings with precious gemstones. It’s always better to leave your most expensive or special pieces in the reliable hands of professionals. 
  • Rings with a severely flattened or cracked band. This requires more than a simple reshaping because the shank will have to be repaired with a soldering iron. 
  • Rings with loose gemstones or bent prongs. It’s risky to try to work on a ring with loose gemstones because you could end up damaging or losing them. A professional jeweler can retip prongs or tighten gemstones while reshaping the ring.

ring-shank-repair

Professional jewelers have access to the specialized tools necessary to gently straighten and repair bands and re-secure stones and settings. It's worth investing in professional care for rings that are unique, hold special meaning, or are expensive investments. 

Bent Ring Prevention Tips 

Most bent rings are caused by some sort of bump or ding — like if your ring falls off the counter and onto the hard tile floor, or if it gets whacked with a paddle during a pickleball game. The best thing you can do is to try to prevent your ring band from getting warped, so you can save time and energy. Here are some useful tips:

  • Remove rings before physical exercise or activities where you’ll be using your hands a lot, like playing sports, gardening, washing dishes, etc. 
  • Store rings in a ring box or jewelry case when you’re not wearing them. Don’t leave them loose in a bag where they can bang into things or on the counter where they can fall to the ground.  
  • Consider buying jewelry with alloyed metals that are intentionally mixed to make the metal more durable. 

Discovering your ring has become bent can make your heart sink, but don’t panic! In many cases bent rings can be repaired. With some patience and care, you can get your special ring back to its original beautiful shape. To make sure your ring is treated with the utmost care and attention, send it to our team at Quick Jewelry Repairs. Our seasoned professionals will have your ring back to its original shape in no time.

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