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Antique look chains


#1

Would a tumbler give me an antique look on my chains and what do I
use to do that? Can I even put chains into a tumbler? Thank you
for your answer! Fgroovy@msn.com


#2

Hi,

 Would a tumbler give me an antique look on my chains and what do I
use to do that?  Can I even put chains into a tumbler?

I’m not sure what antique look you’re looking for, but placing chains
in a tumbler won’t do it.

In fact, quite the contrary. Tumbling chains with steel shot is the
preferred way to polish them. Depending on the finish desired, as
little as 1/2 hour in a vibratory tumble with steel shot will give a
nice shine to a chain just removed from the pickle pot.

The antique look may be the result of tarnish that’s accumulated
over time on parts of the chain that are not subjected to being
buffed by rubbing against clothes or skin while being worn.

If the chain is made from sterling, a short, quick dip in liver of
sulfur followed by buffing may produced the desired finish. If
buffing is done will a powered buffer, wrapping the chain around a
broom handle or similar sized dowel will aid the operation. The chain
will have to be unwrapped & re-wrapped 3 or 4 times to be sure all
areas are buffed. Even when wrapping a chain around a dowel, buffing
chain on a powered buffer can be dangerous. Extreme care should be
used.

Dave


#3

Charles,

   Would a tumbler give me an antique look on my chains and what do
I use to do that?  Can I even put chains into a tumbler? Thank you
for your answer! Fgroovy@msn.com 

Well, depends what you mean by an antique look. I’ve tumbled chains
just to polish and clean them up, which I would consider more likely
to make them seem new. :wink: Perhaps some media would be suited for
antiquing, but all I know about is abrasive plastic and stainless
steel shot.

The way I keep them from becoming inextricably knotted during the
tumbling process may be a useful trick for you, whatever media you
decide to use. I’ve got a couple of pieces of coat-hanger wire that
were crossed and twisted tightly together, so that the four ends could
be bent out into an “x” shape. I then bent loops in the legs and cut
off the excess, such that the thing could fit loosely into the barrel
of my tumbler. You have to have closed loops, mind you, not just
hooks, because the chain needs to be fed through the four loops in
turn, so that it goes all the way around, more than once if need be,
and clasped so that it won’t come out. If it’s an odd length and is
too short or too long to fit the pathway without a lot of slack, just
tie a string between the ends and pull it through the same path. The
chain shouldn’t be tight, since it has to move around and let the
media hit it from all sides, but there shouldn’t be enough slack in
it for it to make a knot in itself.

Drop that into your tumbler and let it run for a bit, not too long,
then take it out and see if it came undone. Chances are that if it
survives twenty minutes, it will survive an hour or so, but if it
comes undone and you have to untangle it, you’re far better off
finding that out early!

Loren (who has spent considerable time untangling fine chains)
http://www.golden-knots.com/
lorenzo@intnet.net @Loren_S_Damewood1


#4

Dear CHARLES ATWELL

    Would a tumbler give me an antique look on my chains and what
do I use to do that?  Can I even put chains into a tumbler? Thank
you for your answer! Fgroovy@msn.com 

A good question, but not easy to answer. I think we might need a
little first of all about:

  1. what chains are you making?

  2. how are you treating / planning to treat them before tumbling?

  3. what tumbling media will you be using?

When we do sterling chains that we want to give an ‘antique’ look, we
’oxidize’ them, - really a bad description, as in reallity we are
covering them with a layer of sulphides. After *oxidizing’ og
’blackening’ the chains the most protruding areas are then abraded
with a very fine abrading medium and by hand. This leaves us with a
chain where the protruding parts are shiny and the rest a matte
black.

I have tried to tumble some of these chains. The result is that
indeed the shiny parts will become even more shiny and also that the
’blackened’ parts will take on a shiny black look. We normally tumble
in a Lortone Nr 12 barrel with soap, a little ammonia, stainless
steel shots and for about 3 hours.

Just my 2 oere.
Kind regards
Niels L�vschal, Jyllinge, Denmark
@L_F8vschal
phone (+45) 46 78 89 94