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Barrell trouble!

I’ve been told by engineering customer service at Gesswein, the way
to clean the barrel with stainless steel shot is to run it with
sudsy ammonia for 20 min. Drain, rinse, and repeat until the shot and
barrel seem clean and do not feel greasy. Run a clear water rinse
for 10 min after that. Sometimes ammonia is hard to find in the
grocery store these days, it’s too old fashioned and efficient for
new soaps. :slight_smile:

One other way to protect the barrel is to first use Rio’s pyramid
ceramic medium with deburring compound and take off antiquing such
as liver of sulphur, tarnishing, etc. and rinse well. Then, put in
the burnishing compound with the stainless shot and that keeps the
medium from darkening and the work comes out brighter. I keep two
barrels on hand with the deburring, and two with stainless shot. My
tumbler holds two barrels and it’s more efficient this way. Each is
rinsed well, drained through a sieve and left open ready for the next
production items.

Kay, Carin, Ruth - thanks for all of these comments. There is a lot
of common points you make and, like I said to Kelley, a good clean
out and empty runs with different water and mild detergent is my
first plan of action. Did a quick check for ammonia Ruth and looks
like I can get it from Boots here in UK no problem. I’ll go with the
coke as I have it at the moment (and I don’t even want to think of
its similarities to ammonia!) Thanks folks - invaluable advice. All
your tips almost make it worth having a disaster at the outset! :slight_smile:


Hi Ruth–

I’m hesitant to disagree with engineering customer service at
Gesswein and i know this sounds goofy but it has always worked for
me: I use coca-cola, the beverage. I too use cheapo harbor
freight-chicago- tumblers and a couple of times have have the gunk
problem, especially after running deeply patinaed work in it. I just
run the shot in the tumbler for several hours with a can of flat coke
in there and rinse it well. Make sure the coke is flat or the barrel
will swell up when it starts tumbling and get so fat that it refuses
to roll. Hope this helps…

Mark Kaplan