Here's a curious question for you, John; would it be worth looking into the idea of a DIY inlay replacement/re-finishing kit at some point?
I can understand that it could be difficult in the case of something like the dreaded carbon fiber but from the ones I have here it looks like the black and the blue at least have the colour in the epoxy coating. I've managed to pretty spectacularly gouge the black side of my Alpha ring and though it does still work it's fairly deep. The black side on my Normal ring is the one that has failed but still intermittently functions when I apply pressure in the correct spot, I guess because the chip as you said has seperated itself from the antenna. This one would be a good candidate for an inlay replacement kit if that were ever to be available - I'm not afraid to give it a try.