Gimli the dwarf once tried to split The One Ring with his mighty axe, but the weapon merely bounced off of the shiny band. Not a scratch or ding could be found. They said the ring was forged from the fires of Mount Doom with metals not of this age. I say the more likely material was none other than tungsten carbide.
Just as Boromir from the Fellowship of the Ring was nearly overcome with the Ring of Power’s seduction, I find myself strangely playing with my tungsten carbide wedding band, twirling it and caressing its smooth half shiny/brushed outer surface. I realize I’m taking the geek theme a little far here, so I’ll try not to strain the imagery.
But humor me one more example. Unlike Gollum and Boromir’s fate, I’m counting on my ring to be with me in times of peril. For instance, recall James Cameron’s Abyss which made a huge splash in 1989. Remember Ed Harris’ character Bud and his near-death escape from the flooding submersible? And what saved him, you should ask?
Why his ring of course! He thrust his hand desperately into the closing flood hatch, his wedding ring preventing his hand from being crushed. You can imagine Bud’s gratitude to this nearly discarded little piece of jewelry.
What could possibly withstand the immense pressures of an hydraulic door? My guess is tungsten carbide.
I’ve also heard it said that should you be exposed to lethal levels of radiation while wearing a tungsten carbide ring, the thin strip of skin around which the ring is wrapped will be preservable; say, for some sort of stylized, albeit macabre, museum display.
Now I know what you’re wondering. Just what is this so-called “tungsten carbide”, and why is it the stuff of legends?
Well for starters, it’s 10 times harder than 18k gold and 4 times harder than titanium. It has a melting point of 2,500 degrees Fahrenheit. Take that, Mount Doom! It’s so hard and forges at such a high temperature that it’s virtually impossible to scratch. It’s nearly indestructible.
With that, I give you… my wedding band:
What I love about my ring is its weight. I wasn’t prepared for how significant and symbolic it would feel on my hand. I like touching it as it reminds me for which it stands. This ring will bind me soon to Sarah. And I’m so grateful for that.