Tension setting for diamond ring is a modern engagement ring trend serving a contemporary look for those who want something unique but unconventional. The setting captures a modern-classic essence which is almost ethereal!
Unlike the prong setting where the center diamond is held between prongs or claws, in a tension setting, the center stone appears as if levitating mid-air (diamond suspended between two metal shanks) Intrigued? If so, keep reading to know more about this magical setting!
Understanding the physics of tension set diamond
To get a little technical, a tension setting primarily secures the center stone between two metal arms by compression pressure. Let’s paint a more detailed picture to give you a better idea of this ring setting design.
- A tension settings ring is a partial band that’s not quite a complete circle. The gap space is exactly wide enough to hold the stone.
- Tension setting rings are held by pressure exerted from both sides (around 12,000 pounds per square inch of pressure). This is no less than an engineering marvel! Tension set diamonds are placed so precisely that the stone is held perfectly snug in the ring, without no grooves, adhesives holding it in place!
- It’s just the ring’s metal body acting as a clamp to hold the diamond between its two ends.
- When you choose a high quality lab grown diamonds with superior 4C’s you would want to show the diamond off as much as you can, right? Since the stone is not held within metal casings, unlike a pronged setting, your diamond now has significantly more surface area for light to hit and light up.
Due to the lack of solid prongs clutching at the diamond, tension set diamonds have their own distinct aura and the end result is a very modern engagement ring.
In 1979, first tension ring which was called the Niessing Spannring was created by a German jewelry company called Niessing. An employee of this company, Friedrich Becker is said to have crafted the first tension set diamond ring.
And later, Steven Kretchmer, who was a metallurgist and an American jeweler, received a patent for these rings. Kretchmer was able to use a lighter-weight band with these rings without compromising on strength of the metal.
Pros & cons of a tension set diamond ring
Let’s begin with what’s actually the good part of owning a tension set engagement ring:
- It’s easier to clean – Intricate work or smaller diamonds in prongs make most rings harder to clean. Sometimes, it’s almost impossible to dislodge residue from the edges of prongs or smaller diamonds thus requiring professional cleaning services every now and then. This is something you would not face with tension setting. Prong-less setting makes these rings easy to clean and maintain.
- Avantgarde style – The setting style is bound to give you truly a one-of-a-kind engagement ring. Cheers for a minimalist and modern engagement ring!
- Diamond is the focal point: The limitation of other diamond rings is their prong setting, that block a clear view of the gem. In a tension-setting ring, the view of the diamond is not compromised, allowing maximum light to pass through the gem allowing it to shine more brilliantly.
- Intriguing: With young couples always looking ways to create their own unique ring, a tension setting is a stunning alternative to the traditional pronged setting. Plus, this unusual and distinctive style of the ring is a perfect conversation starter. Imagine explaining to your friends and family about the unique engineering feat of the ring.
With all that good, there is also some distinct disadvantages that one must be aware of while choosing a modern engagement ring.
- Resizing: Let’s say if there may be, in future, the need to resize your ring or perhaps you decide to upsize your tension-set diamond, then it may not be the easiest thing. As explained earlier, a tension-setting ring uses the exact length of metal and is co-dependent on the proportions of the diamond that’s being set. Both, the metal and the diamond are then secured together in this “pressure” prong-less mounting.
- Pricing: These rings are special, and require skilled craftsmen with precise knowledge to create the perfect tension setting to last a lifetime. Importantly, the metal alloys used and the thickness of the metal shanks (amount of the precious metal used) is higher. As a result, these ring settings may be little costlier than others.
- Needs a watchful eye: In general, high quality tension settings are sturdy and will keep the diamond in place securely. But just like prongs can come loose over the time or if the ring faces a direct/blunt impact then the center stone may loosen up or fall out.
- Bulky look: For security and practical purposes, tension set rings typically have bulky metal shanks because to create the necessary compression to hold the diamond. This can cause the diamond to appear smaller in size. Thus, a tension-setting ring might not be ideal for women who love dainty jewelry pieces.
Some tension set engagement rings that have our heart!
A variation that can give a very similar look is the’ tension-style’ setting is where there are supports tying the two sides of the ring together to prevent accidental separation. Normally the supports are underneath and not very noticeable allowing the style to evoke the same sense of the diamond suspended in air. This is generally a more practical way to achieve the unique and modern look of tension while maintaining adequate security.
To complement your tension set solitaire engagement ring, we would recommend you can stack it up with a classic round diamond-studded wedding band.
If you want some inspiration, take a look at socialite Paris Hilton’s 20-carat three stone emerald engagement ring featuring 2 tension set trapezoid diamonds. As Hilton revealed on ParisHilton.com they “pushed the limits of jewelry using a tension setting to align diamonds seamlessly without metal.”
Final thoughts on modern engagement ring styles
Rings with tension settings are gorgeous and very avantgarde. They can be a bit more expensive and do have their limitations as far as the diamond shapes that the setting can accommodate. But there’s no other ring setting style that comes close to the display of how laws of physics are used to display the best form of carbon – the dazzling diamond.