How A Ring Gets Sized

Sep 13, 2019 | Jewelry Repair, News & Events

Jewelry resizing is situational, depending on the ring. Factors like the history of repairs done on the ring, engravings, the type of gemstones, and if there are holes in the ring determines the type of resizing method used. Cutting the ring and either removing gold to make it smaller, or adding gold to make it bigger, is the most common ring resizing method.


To cut a ring and size it up, the ring is cut at just the right spot. Robert Shinsky, a designer and jeweler at Les Olson Jewelers, checks the ring for a weak point, whether it be a porous spot on the ring or a part where the ring has been cut into and sized before. It’s ideal for jewelers to cut into the ring at a weak point or where it has been previously sized. The ring is then placed on a sizer and expanded to the desired shape and size, creating an opening on the shank. A small piece of gold, wider than the shank (band on the ring) is added and then solder (gold and other alloys mixed together) is added on top of the new piece of gold being added. Finally, a torch is then taken to the ring to fuse everything together.

Sizing a ring down by cutting into it follows a very similar process. The ring is cut at the shank and the appropriate amount of gold is removed. Solder is then added, and the ring is soldered back together. Here at Les Olson Jewelers, we always give the piece of gold back to the customer, giving them option to sell us the piece of gold for cash or a store credit off their sizing.



Rob Shinsky stresses the importance that jewelers take precautions to protect customers jewelry when sizing a ring. “I always put a ring with gemstones head down into a cup of sand when sizing it. Temperatures up to 1200 degrees are used when soldering, so the sand protects the precious gemstones against the extreme heat temperatures.” The jeweler sizing your ring should also always use a bigger piece of gold than needed when sizing up so that theycan craft the ring back to its original shape once everything’s fused together.

Many people have an idea that rings are commonly stretched when sized. Stretching is a rarity when sizing a ring but still occurs depending on the ring. The entire ring can be heated up and stretched to go up half a size (maybe a size at most). If the ring is engraved, has gemstones, or has holes stretching is not an option as the engravings, holes, and gemstone settings will become warped or distorted in shape. Like stated previously, stretching a ring to size is rare and is only used for a select few rings.

Different jewelers have different methods/practices for sizing a ring. For any jeweler, starting with a clean ring is super important when doing any kind of repair work. After the ring is sized, it gets polished and cleaned again. It’s important to note that metal fatigue can happen if a ring gets sized too much, causing the ring to break or snap. Les Olson Jewelers always adds gold when cutting a ring to size up so that we don’t thin out the shank on the ring. All ring sizing’s and repair work that we do is done on the premise and never leaves our studio. To inquire about getting your ring sized, please stop in or call us at 727-785-9624

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