What are prongs?
Prongs, also known as claws, are metal projections that hold a gemstone securely in place in a piece of jewelry. They are typically made of platinum, gold, or silver and are designed to grip the gemstone at its girdle, which is the widest point of the stone.
Prongs can vary in size and shape, depending on the type of stone they are holding and the design of the jewelry. They can be V-shaped, rounded, or even flat. The number of prongs used also varies; typically, four or six prongs are used to secure a round stone, while a pear-shaped or marquise-shaped stone may require five or more prongs to keep it from slipping out of the setting.
What are the functions of prongs?
The only function of prongs is not to hold the gemstone in place, but also to allow light to enter the stone and enhance its brilliance and sparkle. Prongs should be positioned so that they do not block the light from entering the stone, which could make it appear dull and lifeless.
Prongs can wear down or become damaged over time, which may compromise the security of the gemstone. It is important to have prongs checked regularly by a professional jeweler and to have them repaired or replaced if necessary to ensure the safety and longevity of the jewelry piece.