A question about Titanium and wedding bands. Could this happen?

My brother’s wedding band happens to be Titanium. He said that when he bought it he was told make sure nothing crushes that band on his finger because they’ll never be able to get the ring off. They won’t be able to cut it. Apparently they don’t recommend the ring to construction workers or those who work with their hands a lot. How true is this? Is titanium really that strong? And how would an emergency room get it off your finger if it got crushed or bent in?

Well, I am not a metal worker by any means, but I have used Titanium screws before. I have snapped them in two using a hammer. I think the jeweler is just sales pitching your brother.

According to this site, your brother should feel free to crush his fingers while wearing a titanium band.

Can a Titanium ring be cut off?

Titanium? Sheesh, isn’t that a bit cheap? I know it’s an exotic metal, after a fashion, but they build airplanes out of it! Or at least they were planning to build supersonic transports out of a titanium alloy at one point.

So he is saying that Titanium is impossible to cut but it is possible to crush the band on his finger? That doesn’t even make any sense.


It depends on what alloy is used. Some rings are made of structural grade intended for high pressure hydraulic lines and I have seen warnings to that effect. Others are made of softer alloys and fairly hard can be ground easily. My own ring scratches more easily than others I’ve seen so I presume it’s a softer alloy. The jeweler had to grind out the inside to get a correct fit and he did say it was very labor intensive so it is much harder than typical gold alloys but that’s not saying much.

Not sure how they would but I’ve seen pictures of a sex toy that had to be cut from a guy’s now damaged tallywhacker. It appears they used a grinding disk to cut a steel sleeve off. This resulted in a long scar where the grinder got through metal and hit skin but I suppose it beats the alternative. With an air powered die grinder instead of electric they could pour water onto the metal to keep it from heating up and burning.

IMO it’s a bad idea to wear rings when doing potentially dangerous work anyway. A ring can get caught on an edge or nail and result in a very nasty “degloving” injury to the finger. Also it makes working with electicity more hazardous. When learning electronics in the navy I heard many stories of corpses where the only visible injury was the burn mark where a wedding ring melted away when it contacted a conductor.


That llink has an interesrting bit about cutting off aerospace grade titanium rings.

This is nonsense. Any 12 year old with a little Dremel Moto-tool and an abrasive carbide cutting wheel could buzz that ring off in under a minute and I’d be willing to bet a big pair of bolt cutters would snap it like butter. People love to believe hype about their posessions.

See Machining Titanium

So in a crushing incident, would a titanium ring offer more protection than a gold ring? (Not that I’d rely on it…)

(I’m not sure that cite from the jewelry store reassured me – sounds like they just use a Dremel tool with a cut-off disc to remove the ring. Not exactly a precision tool where flesh is involved. And it generates * a lot * of heat. You’d probably have to use a water bath to do it comfortably.)

There’s only one way that this makes partial sense. The tool that most ambulances use for this is a manual ring cutter. It has a handle, a little piece that you slip between the ring and the finger, and a small cutting wheel that you turn by hand. The second picture on this page shows some common ones. These might have some trouble with Ti. I remember it taking ~10 seconds to use one on a (cheap) 12 carat white gold ring.

OTOH, I don’t know if more ambulances are using electric ones (like the one at the top of the page) now. Maybe Cartooniverse can say what’s common equipment today.

There are procedures for dealing with issues like this for hard metals (tungsten carbide), etc. Check out the article here titled “Emergency removal of hard metal or ceramic finger rings” from the Annals of Emergency Medicine.

For starters no one said it’s impossible to cut. Also hardness and strength are two different though not completely unrelated properties. Harness is resistance to being cut or ground. Yield stregth is resistance to being permanently bent. Because of its shape even a strong ring can be crushed out of round by the right load and only hardness and material thickness determine how easily it can be cut.

I think he got it because the jeweler said it was the strongest toughest metal for a ring. And my bro is very spiritual and probably equated it to the strength with-in his new marriage.
He’s certainly not vain.
So I guess he could get it off with a dremmel and a water bath…Hopefully it’ll never happen

** Phlosphr **, since your question has already been answered do you mind if I do a small hijack?

Can anyone provide proof or an actual cite where even one person has been electrocuted because they were wearing a wedding ring?

no prob…I can’t find a cite on a quick google search.

IIRC, Titanium rings aren’t that cheap. IMHO they are not inherently unromantic either. “It’s the only material strong enough to cantain our love”

Are there carbon fiber wedding rings? Kevlar?

Wow, I always suspected my posts were invisible, but here’s proof! The same site, even the same dang quote a mere six minutes later!

Hehehehe. He said “Tallywhacker.” Haven’t heard thazt in a while.

You aren’t invisible darling. You are just faster then me.

Your response wasn’t there when I hit reply and I was six minutes late be the time I hit submit.

Slightly OT but those “de-gloving” injuries are terrible. I knew a girl who got her ring caught on a nail while climbing a tree (no, I don’t know why there was a nail in the tree) and the ring tore off all the flesh from her middle finger. When I saw her next, the doctors had sewn her entire finger into her stomach skin. It was supposed to regrow the flesh torn off from the accident. Unfortunately, it worked a little too well and when they removed the finger from her stomach, there was a bulb of flesh on top of her finger (like a lollipop).
It certainly made me think twice about wearing a wedding ring.
Just a note: this happened in Argentina not the U.S. and I know for a fact that it happened because I saw her finger sewn up in her stomach.

I believe in the “de-gloving” accidents. I don’t believe in the electrocution accidents. At least, I won’t until someone provides some proof that they are real.