Rings for Spring

The spring racing season is upon us yet again!

While the new season is usually met with a visit to the local menswear department to update to the seasons latest sports jacket and Blazer, many of our clients these days actually purchase jewellery for the spring carnival.

Some of the more popular rings that we sell in spring are our tungsten range with coloured carbon fibre inlays. Most notably the red, green and blue inlays which offer eye catching reflections in the sunlight. With prices around $100 per ring they offer exceptional value given the unparalleled scratch resistance.

 

 

For the spring period, Alpha Rings will be offering 10% off all our Tungsten rings! Contact us today to get a coupon code!!

 

 

Using Crypto in the retail environment

Neocrypto-Australia

As we mentioned recently, Alpha Rings will allow you to buy jewellery with cryptocurrency.

There are a few reasons why we made the decision to allow payments with crypto, and as we’ve been asked by a few customers, we thought it was appropriate to write a post for everyone that might have questions about it.

No Fees.

First of all the biggest benefit for us as a merchant is a reduction in the fees we pay. We currently use PayPal as our main gateway. PayPal is a wonderful service which allows seamless integration on our website and securely processes payments without issue. Whilst that has been a real positive for us to use PayPal (and we will continue to use it), the fees do add up.

The big benefit of using NEO and GAS is that transactions between wallets are free. This is a huge huge benefit for us. It means that neither us the retailer, or the client needs to pay a cent for the transaction. Over the course of a financial year, this does add up for us, in an industry where margins are much tighter than they used to be.

 

Fast transactions

The other option we have available to make payments with is bank transfers. The big problem with this is the time it takes. It still takes days for payments to be received. This means the client needs to wait before shipment, until the funds have landed and cleared in our account. Not only that, many banking apps still have a pretty poor UI.

NEO and GAS generally transfer from wallet to wallet within 30 seconds. This is an incredibly quick process. I can be instant messaging someone, and the payment lands within seconds, then I can go to the post office and post their ring.

 

Ease of use

The NEO ecosystem and in particular the NEON wallet are very easy to use. Whilst it takes a little getting used to, once you are set up, transferring between exchanges and wallets is incredibly easy. As long as you take care to always protect your private key, and ensure you double check the destination address, you should have no issue moving your funds around. A test can always be done with a fraction of a GAS, which is a matter of a few cents.

 

Divisible.

GAS is divisible, which means you can get the exact AUD figure you desire. You can also send payments with whole units of NEO and fractions of a GAS, if you wish.

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Mobile Apps

Although products like Ontology are not free, they do have a current Android and iOS mobile wallet with QR code. This allows easy wallet to wallet transfer of funds. NEO doesnt yet have a mobile wallet unfortunately.

 

So that is some of the main reasons why we’ve chosen to accept crypto as payment for our wedding rings. Consumers are always after choices. We’ve tried to provide a great spread of mens rings that Australians can choose from, which are not necessarily the same as every other websites. Likewise we’re offering the choice of payment options.

Should you wish to pay by Crypto, please don’t hesitate to get in touch!!!

Thanks for reading,

Nick

Carbon fiber rings reduced for August, to $99

To celebrate the last days of winter, Alpha Rings are offering a discount on our Tungsten rings with Carbon Fiber inlays. We’ve got Green, Red, Blue and our most popular inlay – Black.

We’ve sold these rings the world over and our customers always give us good feedback about them!

Unlike much of the product that you’ll find in some popular “marketplace” sites that you’ll find for $20 or $30 dollars, these are not made of junk material. Our rings are made of the highest grade materials and we use a nickel binding material, not cobalt, which is consistent with many of the cheaper products you’ll find.

Carbon fiber rings look great because they catch the light in different ways depending on the light that your in. The other thing is that the resin that we use is incredibly scratch resistant. We’ve seen friends who’ve worn this ring for years and there isn’t a single scratch on the face. Thats simply not going to happen with a cheap ring.

So for the rest of the month, all tungsten and carbon fibre rings rings are $99!!

tungsten ring alpha rings green-cf Red-Carbon-Fiber-Tungsten-Ring-300x300 8mmblueandblackcarbonfibertungstenthinner__71260_1335983493_1280_1280

The big 3 of mens Jewellery

mens omega watch

When men are looking to accessorise, its important that it is done tastefully and elegantly. Nothing looks worse than an overdone businessman, a try hard who thinks “the more gold I wear, the cooler I’ll look”

Unfortunately nothing could be further from the truth. There are 3 items that a man should always wear in the corporate world, and its so incredibly easy to pull off.

 

The Watch

The number 1 item that a guy should wear is the humble wrist watch. For years naysayers have been calling for the end of the wrist watch because a mobile phone will tell the time more accurately. However nothing completes the look of a well tailored suit like an elegant watch. A watch catches peoples eyes and captures their imagination. Watches are such a personal choice that its one way that men can express their personality so emphatically. Big and brash, or understated and classy – you can get an immediate insight to someones personality just by glancing at what’s on their wrist.

And you don’t have to pay thousands of dollars for a high performing watch either. Companies like Steinhart, Citizen, Tissot and even Seiko produce stunningly reliable and elegant watches. Heck you can even buy a Replica that most people can’t tell the difference. But if you buy a replica Rolex and drive a 20 year old commodore, people will call bullshit.

mens omega watch

Actor Daniel Craig wore an Omega 2220.80 Seamaster watch with co-axial movement as James Bond in the Eon Productions film “Casino Royale” (2006).

The Ring

Similar to a watch, a ring is a very personal item that a man can wear to express his personality. The great thing about rings are that they come in such a broad range of colours, materials and designs. Big, black and loaded with diamonds, or a simple Titanium wedding band, and everything in between. We find that there is such a wide range of products that people are interested in, and thats great because it shows guys are getting exactly what THEY want, not what the masses want.

mens titanium wedding band

The Tie Bar

The last item that every business man should wear every day is the tie bar. There isn’t a lot of worse fashion looks than a poorly done half windsor above a crooked tie. There’s no need for either. There are a million sites out there to help you tie your tie properly, and equally as many that you can buy a tie bar from. Tie bars come in pretty much any shape or size that you can imagine, and they do as advertised – keep your tie straight.

 

So it doesn’t take a heck of a lot to accessorise for your business day. Buying the above items could cost anything really. You could get a quality watch, ring and tie bar for under a thousand, or it could cost $50,000. But either way, nothing completes a look like a quality Watch, ring and tie bar..

Rings make great Valentines day gifts!!

mens ring valentines day

Here at Alpha Rings, our amazing customers choose our products all year round. There really isn’t any one time of year that is stronger than any other. One area where we are noticing that we are always busy however, is around Valentines day. Valentines day has traditionally never been a huge market for us, but now as clients become more and more aware of the versatility of contemporary metal rings, men and women are really taking to the idea of a ring for a gift.

Cobalt ring valentines day

Cobalt Rings are in demand all year round, and most certainly on Valentines day

Less expensive rings are in vogue at this time of year, so particularly plain tungsten or Cobalt rings are in demand. I think that is because when people are buying gifts, they aren’t sure exactly what their partner might like and therefore they don’t want to waste too much money on a purchase that isn’t perfect! So we don’t seem to see many Black Titanium and diamond rings being picked up at this time of year!!!

Mens Valentines day fashion rings

Wood grain rings have been particularly popular this Valentines day

One other great thing about the products we sell is that they are reasonably priced so it is not an insane investment to buy a product from Alpha Rings. Couple that with the fact that we have a great return and warranty program and you can be confident that your purchase is supported by reliable Australian family values that want to see you happy!

If you’d like to purchase a fashion ring for valentines day, Tungsten Rings are a great place to start!

Asian Football star launches new Jewellery line

Hidetoshi Nakata

Hidetoshi Nakata was dubbed by some as the David Beckham of Asia due to his well groomed appearance and his love of all things fashion. The Japanese sensation was never far out of the spotlight often featuring in many of the worlds largest publications.

Now Hideyoshi has ventured into the world of Jewellery and has a collaborative line with Italian designer Damiani, which is known as “Metropolitan Dream”. Metropolitan Dream is aimed at the Metropolitan man – but it is supposed to be overwhelmingly a unisex line.

Leather, gold and pink gold are common themes with these pendants and bracelets, which, Hidetoshi is hopeful will be a hit with the younger market.

Part proceeds of each sale will go towards helping a clean water project in Africa, which is something that is most dear to his heart. “Actually, one of the conditions for me to agree to do this project was that I would get a chance to go to Africa to see this Clean Water Project for myself. Giorgio said okay and next year, we’re going there. If he had said no, then I probably would not have signed on.”

Anodised Titanium Bands

mens blue rings

Although the ability to anodise steel has been around for many decades, its application in jewellery has been mainly associated with female lines, in particular rings and necklaces. Anodising creates remarkable colours by a process which involves electrically charged particles.

mens blue rings

grey titanium with 2 inset channels of anodised blue

Recently however, Edward Mirell have given the anodisation process something of a renaissance! Mens titanium bands are now seeing a splash of colour through them which has not previously been seen in any of the Edward Mirell lines in the past.

anodized-black-titanium-band with blue

The blue anodised effect is more subtle with black titanium

One of the key features to note with the anodised rings is the slight recessed channels where the colour is situated. This has the effect of protecting the colour and greatly increasing its life because it is not surface facing and therefore has a considerably reduced risk of being scratched.

blue titanium ring

Although Edward Mirell have had the ability to create these designs for many years, these are quite new lines so they have only released a select few bands. The theme is predominantly blue mens rings  although other designs are said to be following soon. The products are currently limited to both black titanium and grey titanium. There are no plans to have anodised Cobalt bands at this stage.

mens pattern band

So come and check them out, they’ve proven to be quite popular so far, particularly the grey titanium variety as the contrast between the blue and grey is quite remarkable.

black and blue mens ring

Comparing types of materials for mens wedding rings

One of the most frequently asked questions we ever receive revolves around the question “what is the best material to make mens wedding rings out of?”

This is a really tough question, and only the individual can really answer this, but here is a bit of a breakdown to help you make the decision. These are only general concepts, and there is some movement on these concepts. What is also important is the quality of the product you are comparing. Poor quality anything is not going to be great to make a wedding ring out of!!!

To make it easier, we’ve made a great infographic which makes things a bit more easy on the eye!

alpharings-infographic-2 copy

CLICK TO ENLARGE

 

Tungsten Rings – Tungsten Rings are arguably the most hardy from a scratcc resistance point of view, but they can still crack if hit with something or dropped from a tall height. Also, some people find the greyness of Tungsten to be less spectacular than other metals. Overall it is a very good choice for tradesmen or those that do manual labour and have their ring on. Tungsten Rings can be bought quite cheaply but it is very important to find a supplier of high quality Tungsten as there are big variations in the quality of Tungsten products. This is for a few reasons, including the binding agents used. Even non cobalt binders such as Nickel can be problematic if they fail a Nickel release test, which is a hallmark of poor quality rings. Its not possible to produce a quality product and sell it for $10 or $20 as seen on many of the popular “e-marketplace sites”.

Black Titanium Rings – Black Titanium Rings are exclusive to Edward Mirell who have the patent on the product. Click here to learn more about Black Titanium Rings.  Black Titanium has an incredibly hard outer shell but it maintains much of the grey titanium ductility which means that it is very scratch resistant, but not particularly prone to cracking. It is very hardy, is an amazing colour, and can be made into all manner of incredible shapes. Black Ti made by Edward Mirell is used by some of the worlds biggest companies in their manufacturing processes. An excellent choice for a wedding ring. Remember only Edward Mirell have the patent for true Black Titanium. Most other “black titanium” is just powder coated or electroplated which is a vastly inferior product.

Cobalt Rings – Cobalt is one of Alpha Rings favourites to make a wedding ring out of. Its more scratch resistant than Gold, Silver, Titanium but a bit less scratch resistant than Tungsten. It has the most brilliant colour which resembles Platinum, but at a fraction of the price. Cobalt is suitable for males of all walks of life, be it tradesmen or office workers. Cobalt wedding rings always look impressive and stay looking good for a long long time. If you are after a “silverish” colour, then Cobalt would be our choice. Cobalt is lighter than Tungsten aswell.

Ceramic Rings – Ceramic rings have had a big decline in popularity in recent years. Unless you are after a different kind of colour like blue or red or something, there are just better options elsewhere. Black was traditionally the most used colour, but Black Titanium has since far exceeded Ceramic in almost every regard (except that Black Titanium is more expensive). Ceramic rings are light and scratch resistant but they are very limited in the type of styles that can be made. We really don’t produce them much anymore.

Titanium Rings – Grey Titanium rings are some of the most versatile rings on the market. They are almost right in the middle when it comes to scratch resistance. Much more scratch resistant than Gold, Silver and Steel, but less than Cobalt, Tungsten and Black Titanium. One of the great things about Titanium is the incredible amount of design variations that can be produced. Titanium is incredibly light, has good resilience and is moderately priced. Scratches should be expected but this will add to the character of the ring. Titanium is another product that requires high quality production techniques to avoid weakness in the construction which can occur if not using Commercial Pure (CP) Titanium

Steel Rings – Steel rings are excellent as fashion or costume jewellery but make a poor choice for wedding rings. They scratch too easily and are too easily bent out of shape. Alpha Rings doesn’t sell steel because there are many better choices. We’d recommend you steer clear of rings where the outer surfaces are Steel.

Gold Rings – Gold Rings are still incredibly popular because of the traditional element and people still like the colour of Gold. Gold has attributes which make it good as a wedding ring as an alloy – but contemporary metals do a better job. Gold is also very expensive. Thats a good thing if you want to have a ring with a high intrinsic value, as in, the precious metal is actually worth something as resell value.

Silver Rings – Silver, generally speaking, makes a  poor choice for a mans wedding ring. Silver is way too soft and easily bent and disfigured. Silver is fine as an inlay but it will scratch. We would never suggest to use Silver for a wedding ring. A Silver ring just won’t stand up to the rigours of wearing it every day.

 

We’ve taken some images below to help you with a visual comparison between Cobalt, Tungsten and Titanium rings. It is quite hard to explain the visual differences with words, and photographs are often quite difficult to produce the right colour rendering. The below images do a reasonable job of showing the subtle differences between the three metals. Tungsten is clearly has a more “grey” hue to it. Cobalt has more of a “whiteness” about it, and Titanium has a yellowish type of grey to it. Have a look for yourself.

comparing ring materials

Here is a clear comparison in the same lighting. Cobalt brushed and polished is on the left, Titanium polished in the middle, and tungsten brushed and polished on the right

 

 

Tungsten ring on the left, Titanium ring on the right

Tungsten ring on the left, Titanium ring on the right

 

On the left is a Cobalt ring with a brushed face, on the right is a Tungsten ring with a brushed face

On the left is a Cobalt ring with a brushed face, on the right is a Tungsten ring with a brushed face

We’ve written another great article here to help you make with your purchase, the post is called “How to choose a mens wedding ring

How Tungsten Rings are made

Tungsten Rings

Much has been made of Tungsten Rings recently. Tungsten is one of the modern rings, or contemporary ring materials that has gained incredible popularity of late.
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This popularity is for a few reasons, such as the incredible scratch resistance and the mirror like finish.

However a number of our customers have asked us – how are these Tungsten rings made? With that in mind, it became appropriate to write a post on the topic.
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First and foremost, and as I’ve touched on with other posts in the past, and will certainly do so in the future, the quality of these contemporary metals fluctuates greatly. Poor quality rings are, unfortunately found all over the internet. Due to this, its most important that you do your research and ask questions which you can gain from this, and other posts within our blog.

First of all, Tungsten has the chemical symbol W, and has the atomic number 74. It is a greyish white metal. Importantly it has the highest melting point of all metals, at a whopping 3422 degrees. Tungsten rings are around 10 times harder than 18k gold, 5 times harder than steel, and 4 times harder than titanium.  Tungsten also measures somewhere around 8 to 9 on the Mohs hardness scale. Diamonds are a 10.

Tungsten in its pure form is prone to scratching and is quite brittle, so it needs to be combined with other materials, the main one being carbon. It is only at this point that it gains its incredible strength and scratch resistance. This is where the term Tungsten Carbide Rings comes from.
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Making Tunsgten Rings

Tungsten Rings start as a powder

Each Tungsten ring goes through approximately 30 stages, and they are individually crafted. This is another step in the process where error rates can creep in so it is essential that the quality personnel are used to ensure a high quality end product.
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For the purpose of making mens rings the tungsten starts off as a powder, containing Carbon, Nickel, Tungsten (around 85% is ideal) and various other trace components. This composition is critical to the finished product. This combinatin of powders is then highly compressed & fired in a furnace & this produces a blank ring of incredible strength and integrity.

From there the manual process begins where artisans go through various processes to create the finished product. Diamond abrasives and diamond cutting tools need to be used when machining the Tungsten blank, because of how strong the product is. The main stages to consider are the shaping of the ring which occurs with diamond grinding tools. This includes the inlay channel which is cut out. From there polishing occurs. Because of the hardness of the product, this is one of the most labor intensive stages.
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The resulting product is an astonishingly hard ring with a brilliant shine. If looked after properly these rings will last forever. I have had many tungsten rings over the years and they all look as good as when I got them.
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