Back to Ganoksin | FAQ | Contact

Advice requested on tumbling


#1

Happy New Year to All, I am looking to consider thepurchase of a
tumbler but have never used one and would appreciate any
professional advice.

I would only tumble or polish occasionally and I’m guessing that
most of my items would be mixed metals - small bits of unique
jewelry for mywife and a few of our friends, so…

1 - Is the above enough for someone to make a
recommendation? If it is not, what other should I
provide?

2 - What type of tumbler should I purchase - rotary drum of
vibratory?

3 - What is better about one versus the other?

4 - Any general tumbling suggestions?

May your 2015 befilled with blessings, many thanks and I look
forward to any advice you may be willing to share.

Bob A. DeMarcki


#2

Bob - what do you want the tumbler to do? Refine surfaces, harden
surfaces, burnish?

The short answer is rotary machines are used for shining and
hardening and run with stainless steel. Vibratory machines are used
to refine surfaces and run with mild to very aggressive media. They
can also run dry media charged with a polishing compound for a high
shine.

The subject is multifaceted. Best answer is get the book “Tumble
Finishing for Handmade Jewelry”. It starts at the beginning and
helps you understand the terminology, machines, media, liquids - all
that stuff. Not available from Amazon - get it from Rio Grande, Otto
Frei, Gesswein. It should give you enough to figure out
what you want to do and how to do it with tumblers. Book is not
expensive.

Judy Hoch, G.G.