24 Karat Iridium Ring December 10 2015

Wedding bands have traditionally been made of gold with 14 karat (or 58.5% pure) being the most common and 18 karat (or 75% pure) also available. Gold is too soft to make a durable ring out of at 24 karat purity (99.9% pure and up). There are many other alternatives to gold which are becoming popular including silver, platinum, palladium, tungsten, cobalt and stainless steel. The hardness, corrosion resistance, durability, purity, beauty, and cost are all factors to be considered. There are also several alloys out there that include iridium. PT950 (95% platinum and 5% iridium) and PD950 (95% palladium and 5% iridium) are the most common iridium containing rings. Iridium is the most corrosion resistant metal and is a close second to osmium as the most dense metal (weighing 22.56 g/cm3 compared with osmium at 22.59 g/cm3, platinum at 21.45 g/cm3, gold at 19.30 g/cm3 and silver at 10.49 g/cm3). Iridium also has a very high melting point of 4435 degrees F and Moh's hardness of 6.5 compared with gold (1948 degrees F and 2.5) and platinum (3215 degrees F and 3.5). Our essentially pure iridium rings have a very subtle random pitting pattern on the surface which is virtually invisible to the naked eye, yet can be easily seen with a jewelers loupe. This may be a characteristic of the casting process of pure iridium. A solution would be alloying iridium with platinum, palladium, tin or some other softer metal, but of course that would diminish its purity. Some might consider this a negative, but if you just consider it a nearly invisible quirk that gives your ring an identifying feature when viewed under a jewelers loupe, much akin to inclusions in a diamond and therefore something that cannot be duplicated exactly, then we think you might even find it has a certain appeal.

 

There something else very special about iridium. Most of the iridium in the earth's crust is thought to have come from outer space via meteorites as it is so dense that most native iridium sank to the earth's core when our young planet was a molten ball of magma. Its relatively high concentration in the K-T boundary of the earth's crust and the Alvarez hypothesis support these assertions. It is among the most rare metals on earth with only about 3 tonnes mined per year worldwide compared with over 3000 tonnes of gold. If you want a wedding band cast from a pure precious metal that rained down from the heavens in a ball of fire around 65 million years ago, one that is among that is among the rarest, hardest and most corrosion resistant metals, and certainly one that will reflect a pure, timeless love as boundless as the universe from which it came, then we believe this is your ring.

 
Our 24 karat, 99.95% pure iridium rings will be available in the most common US men's sizes 8-12, hopefully by late Spring of 2016. The prototype pictured above, for which we will have more detailed pictures soon, is a US size 9 and is being etched along the inner surface with RWMM - Ir .9995 - 0001, reflecting our brand, the element symbol, purity and serial number (which will be unique for each ring). This prototype will be available by the end of February 2016. Other sizes will be considered but can take as long as 6 months to complete. These rings cannot be resized, but as with our other products we will allow 30 days for returns. Own and wear what is rare!