How much media to add to vibratory tumbler?

Hello all, I’m back with another question. I can’t seem to find any tips on how much media (plastic blue pyramids) and burnishing compound you’re supposed to use. I have it filled a little over halfway with the water/compound mix about 1/4" above the media. I just want to make sure I’m not over or under-doing it.


If your media is new and if you have Judy’s book, please go back and read it again before you start. Some of the information in her book is complex and I needed to read it multiple times.

Based on what you said in your recent threads about this subject, if you don’t already have Judy’s book, I think you need it and doubt you would regret buying it.

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I have Judy’s book. It is a great resource. Go to Rio and search on Judy Hock. You should find it for $15…Rob

I ordered it last night! I wish there was a pdf version though. It’s going to take a week to get here. Would have been nice to have for the weekend.

I have always been told that what size the bowl is the media should fill ¾ of the bowl

Andy the Tool Guy

Director Tools Business

800-877-7777 Ext 4194

If you don’t have cash to splash on books… here’s a great post on tumblers.

I hope this helps.

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Fill vibe at least 80 percent, then up to 10 percent of jewelry. Flow thru liquid is best, if not, use minimal liquid. For example, with TV5, 8 ounces liquid. Check at 3 to 4 hour intervals. Change out to clean liquid if dirty. Run times matter and are based on quality of preprocess, metal, media, desired finish.
And never run rotary with steel more than an hour. Steel will only burnish, not smooth metal.


Thanks Judy! Your book is on the way too! Ordered it two days ago.

You can get a load of info from Rio support team. they will tell you what medium to use and how long to tumble. Rio blue Sunshine burnishing liquid is better than Dawn.

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