JEWELRY REPAIRS 101: Glossary of Jewelry Repairs

Jan 9, 2021 | Jewelry Repair, News & Events

Get to know the jewelry repair jargon before dropping off your piece of jewelry to get fixed.

You look down at your hand and a diamond is missing from your engagement ring. You’re playing with your dog and a paw snags and breaks your chain. Your gold bracelet isn’t as secure as it once was and the latch continues to come apart. Don’t panic!

At Les Olson Jewelers in Palm Harbor, we fix jewelry of all kinds. The majority of your fine jewelry has remedies that we can work on. Just like going to a dentist, we recommend coming in as soon as you notice an issue instead of waiting for it to become a bigger issue. It is a lot more cost effective to fix a broken prong than replacing a missing gemstone.

Understand what is happening to your precious jewelry so you can feel comfortable dropping it off for Les Olson Jewelers onsite jewelry repairs. We breakdown the following in the jewelry repair 101 guide:




There are some jewelry repairs that are universal across the board. The majority of these jewelry repairs can be applicable to everything from rings to bracelets to necklaces.

Ultra-Sonic Cleaning:

The first step of every jewelry repair is cleaning the piece. This helps reveal any other potential needed repairs that weren’t visible while the jewelry was dirty. The ultra-sonic cleaner pulsates the dirt and grime out of a piece.

Rhodium Plating:

White gold is inherently yellow. Over time the rhodium that makes it white fades away revealing a natural yellow gold found within. Rhodium plating brings it back to that shiny white color that white gold should be. Depending on the condition of the jewelry it can be a fairly quick process. It requires the jewelry to be thoroughly cleaned, then polished before any plating can be done. This simple onsite jewelry repair can be done in about a week if there is no other issue with the piece.

Gold Polishing:

If you’ve noticed scratches forming on gold jewelry, bring it in to be polished out. White gold will need to be re-rhodium plated after being polished, due to the rhodium being removed during the polishing process.

Platinum Polishing:

While platinum is a strong metal, it is still susceptible to scratches and dings. When you notice that, bring your platinum jewelry in to be polished.

Jewelry Soldering:

Soldering involves the use of an open flame to attach gold or silver to itself. Solder itself is a mix of a precious metal and an alloy that has a lower melting point. Soldering works best when sizing rings.

Jewelry Laser Welding:

Laser welding involves the use of a laser to weld precious metals together. A laser is an amplified beam of light that when focused on a fixed point can weld with precision. Our laser welder has revolutionized the way we do repairs. A laser is extremely safe to use around all gemstones because it doesn’t heat the area around the weld. There is also no need to use solder when welding because the laser fuses the metal together without the use of solder.

Get more detail about Laser Welding.



Every day you use your hands so it’s no surprise that a ring may face a lot of activity. With that activity the ring becomes susceptible to damage. Even when you are extremely careful with your rings, over time ring repairs may still be necessary.

Tips & Prong Repair:

Over time the prongs that hold your gems in place can start to wear. It is better to get this fixed sooner rather than later to avoid your gem from falling out.

Ring Prong Repair

Ring Sizing:

One of the most common ring repairs is ring sizing. When a ring doesn’t fit we can size it up or down. This is done with the use of either a torch or laser welder depending on the rings structure.

Dive deeper into ring resizing with “How A Ring Gets Sized.”

Ring Guard:

A cost effective option for changing the size of the ring without getting too intrusive with the ring’s design is a ring guard. This base metal piece is inserted and folded inside the ring. It is adjusted to fit your finger. This is also an option if the ring spins on the base of your finger after it goes over the knuckle.

Channel Repair:

Channels are a way to secure diamonds and/or gemstones on a ring that snuggles the gems between two solid pieces of precious metal. This can be an extensive repair. If you notice your diamond or gemstone wiggling in the channel, make sure to bring it in as soon as possible to minimize the risk of losing them.

Channel Ring Repair

Head Replacement:

When prongs have been neglected for too long, it is more cost effect to simply replace the head of the ring. We replace the ring’s head with a replica so your ring repair can look like new again.

Gemstone Replacement:

A gemstone falling out can be a big disappointment. Whether it was from wear or an accident with a prong being pulled, Les Olson Jewelers can help with this ring repair. We have access to a plethora of gemstones from around the world and can find just about any gemstone that exists. Not to mention we have a Graduate Gemologist in our studio that can assist with any gemstone request.

Gemstone Setting:

If you have an heirloom gem that you want set in a different setting, we can make that happen.




Necklace Clasp Repair:

If a clasp is fixable, we can do it. Otherwise we recommend a total clasp replacement for your necklace repair. The typical clasps used are a lobster claw or trigger clasp, a spring ring, plunger and barrel, toggle, sisterhook, swivel, easy lock, box, barrel, fold over, and more. These clasps can be used on bracelets as well.

Bail Replacement:

Whether it’s for aesthetic reason or the bail has worn, we can get you a new one to keep your pendant secure on your chain.

Broken Chain Repair:

A link on a chain can wear or weaken and break. We utilize our laser welder to fix the broken link.

Pearl Restringing:

Pearl restringing requires the tedious hands of a well-trained re-stringer. The types of restringing we do are single strand, multi-strand, intricate weaves, knotted, unknotted, complex and a variety of other techniques. We use a variety of cords including silk, nylon coated, multi-colored to match or compliment the color of your beads. We take the extra step of including bead cups also known as bead tips on each end of the strand for extra protection.

Find out exactly how often your pearls need restrung.




Bracelet Clasp Repair:

Gold can wear after time and can weaken its hold. Depending on the severity of the damage, we can either fix or replace the clasp. See the list above in Necklace Clasp Repair to learn about the types of clasps we use.

Jewelry Restringing:

It’s not just pearls that are strung. A bracelet sees a lot more activity than a necklace since it is on your wrist. See the list above in Pearl Restringing to learn about the types of restringing we do.



Earring Post Conversion:

Need a new look? Earrings uncomfortable? We can change out your earrings’ current post to make it how you’d like. There are many options and styles of earring posts. Here are some of the styles of earring posts we offer at Les Olson Jewelers. We can convert your earrings using a straight friction post, screw post, double notched, single notched, la pousette, shepherds hook, guardian, leaver backs, omega backs, French backs, non-pierced and many more.

There is also the option of switching out your ring back – discover some of the ring back options that we offer.

Earring Prong Repair:

Earring prongs usually don’t wear down very fast however they are susceptible to chemical contamination due to the use of hair products. If you feel like yours are worn, we can evaluate the condition of the prongs.


Don’t go long without getting your jewelry inspected for possible damages.  Jewelry damage usually starts small and sometimes goes unnoticed. Like most things, repairs can end up expensive if you neglect to get your jewelry repaired. Just like you maintain a car, you need to maintain your jewelry.

We do all our repairs onsite at our Palm Harbor, Florida jewelry studio. You don’t have to worry about your jewelry getting shipped out. You can even see our jewelers working when you swing by our downtown Palm Harbor jewelry studio!

If you have any questions about our repair process, do not hesitate to swing into our jewelry studio. Or contact us on our website:

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